The Lady from Shanghai

The Lady from Shanghai quotes

38 total quotes (ID: 1108)

Arthur Bannister
George Grisby
Michael O'Hara
Others


[describing Acapulco] There's a fair face to the land, surely, but you can't hide the hunger and guilt. It's a bright, guilty world.


[Michael's pre-signed confession note] I, Michael O'Hara, in order to live in peace with my God, do freely make the following confession...We arrived at the boat landing at approximately 10:20. Mr. Grisby said he heard a sound, something suspicious. He said he was frightened of a hold-up and asked me to get the gun out of the side pocket of the car just in case. I reached in and got the gun, but I had hardly taken hold of it when the gun went off by accident in my hand, and I saw that Mr. Grisby was all covered with blood. It took me a minute to realize that Mr. Grisby was dead, to realize that I, Michael O'Hara, had killed him.

[to Elsa, as he is dying] You know, for a smart girl, you make a lot of mistakes. You should have let me live. You're gonna need a good lawyer.

[to Michael] This is one case I've enjoyed losing. I'm coming to see you in the Death House, Michael, every day. Our little visits will be great fun. I'm going to ask for a stay of execution, and I really hope it will be granted. I want you to live as long as possible before you die...I've got an edge. I know you're going to the gas chamber.

[voiceover] I began to ask myself if I wasn't out of my head entirely. The wrong man was arrested. The wrong man was shot. Grisby was dead and so was Broome. And what about Bannister? He was going to defend me in a trial for my life. And me, charged with a couple of murders I did not commit. Either me or the rest of the whole world is absolutely insane.

[voiceover] It was early October when we made San Francisco, and dropped anchor across the bay from the city in Sausalito. It had been a most interesting cruise, all very rich and rare and strange. But I had had no stomach for it. To begin with, living on a hook takes away your appetite. You have no taste for any pleasure at all but the one that's burnin' in you. But even without an appetite, I had heard it's quite amazing how much a fool like me can swallow.

I knew I'd find you two together. If I hadn't, Elsa, I might have gone on playing it your way. You didn't know that, but you did plan for me to follow you...I presume you think that if you murder me here, your sailor friend will get the blame and you'll be free to spend my money. Well, dear, you aren't the only one who wants me to die. Our good friend, the District Attorney, is just itching to open a letter that I left with him. The letter tells all about you, lover. So you'd be foolish to fire that gun. With these mirrors, it's difficult to tell. You are aiming at me, aren't you? I'm aiming at you, lover. Of course, killing you is killing myself. It's the same thing. But you know, I'm pretty tired of both of us.

I never make up my mind about anything at all until it's over and done with.

I was right. She was the killer. She killed Grisby. Now she was going to kill me. Her servant Li and his friends smuggled me out into the darkness and hid me where I'd be safe from the cops, not safe from her. One of the Chinese worked in an amusement park. It was closed for the season. An empty amusement park makes a good hide-out and she wanted me hidden. Well, I came to in the Crazy House and for a while there, I thought it was me that was crazy. After what I'd been through, anything crazy at all seemed natural. But now I was sane on one subject - her. I knew about her. She planned to kill Bannister, she and Grisby. Grisby was to do it for a share of Bannister's money. That's what Grisby thought, but of course, she meant to kill Grisby too after he'd served his purpose. Poor howling idiot, he never even did that. He went and shot Broome, and that was not part of the plan. Broome might have got to the police before he died. And if the cops traced it to Grisby, and the cops made Grisby talk, he'd spill everything and she'd be finished. So she had to shut up Grisby but quick. And I was the fall guy.

I went to call the cops, but I knew she'd be dead before they got there and I'd be free. Bannister's note to the DA would fix it. I'd be innocent officially, but that's a big word - innocence. Stupid's more like it. Well, everybody is somebody's fool. The only way to stay out of trouble is to grow old, so I guess I'll concentrate on that. Maybe I'll live so long that I'll forget her. Maybe I'll die trying.

I've always found it very... sanitary to be broke.

Just tell 'em you're taking a little tarrrr-get practice.

Mike's got a lot of blarney but he knows how to hurt a man when he gets mad.

Mr. Bannister tells me you once killed a man. You are Michael, aren't you?...I'm very interested in murders. Forgive me if I seem inquisitive, but where'd it happen?...How'd you do it? No, let me guess. You did it with your hands, didn't you? Does it ever bother you when you think about it? What did he do to you?...You just killed him for the fun of it, eh?...Then it wasn't murder, I suppose. Tell me, would you do it again? Would you mind killing another man?...Would you kill me if I gave you the chance? I may give you the chance.

New York is not as big a city as it pretends to be.