Quotable: The Big Lebowski

The Big Lebowski is the movie I turn to most on the quoting front. It's so good it hurts, and everyone in my family now catches the references too. When I meet a movie fan who hasn't seen this I basically put the DVD in their hands, I'm like an Amway salesman about this movie.

Maude Lebowski: What do you do for recreation?

The Dude: Oh, the usual. I bowl. Drive around. The occasional acid flashback.

We don't know it at the time but Maude is looking for a suitable DNA.

Walter Sobchak: You want a toe? I can get you a toe, believe me. There are ways, Dude. You don't wanna know about it, believe me.

The Dude: Yeah, but Walter ...

Walter Sobchak: Hell, I can get you a toe by 3 o'clock this afternoon ... with nail polish.

The ultimate in over-the-top buddies, Walter is trying to explain to The Dude why a toe has appeared from a hostage situation they were negotiating. The Dude is upset. Walter's comeback is classic, and can be used in any situation. Someone needs a TPS report? There are ways, dude. Need green monster playoff seats? You don't want to know about it, believe me. I use this once a week minimum.

The Dude: Also, my rug was stolen.

Cop: The rug was in the car?

The Dude: No. It was here.

Cop: Oh, separate incidents.

Maude Lebowski: [on answering machine] Jeffrey, this is Maude Lebowski. I need to see you. I'm the one who took your rug.

Cop: Well I guess we can close the books on that one!

Picture The Dude in his ratty apartment with drug paraphernalia all over the place. He's trying to track down a briefcase full of cash in the city of Los Angeles. Insert two cops who clearly can't help in any manner. Then watch the dude tip toe around the fact that he's a pot-smoking accomplice to a hostage situation. What a lovely scene.

The Dude: These are, uh ...

Brandt: Oh, those are Mr. Lebowski's children, so to speak.

The Dude: Different mothers, huh?

Brandt: No.

The Dude: So racially he's pretty cool then?

Brandt: They're not literally his children. They're the Little Lebowski Urban Achievers -- inner city children of promise but without the necessary means for a ... necessary means for a higher education. So Mr Lebowski is committed to sending all of them to college.

Brandt is played by Philip Seymour Hoffman long before the accolades poured in! The pair is looking at a wall of photographs, and Brandt is clearly uncomfortable with even The Dude's right to exist. Then The Dude lobs out the other Lebowski fathering multiple children with multiple women. Boom!

The Dude: That rug really tied the room together.

The Dude, the biggest dirtbag in California throwing out interior decorating thoughts regarding the dingiest living area ever. Exquisite.

Walter Sobchak (while bowling): OVER THE LINE!

Smokey: Huh?

Walter Sobchak: I'm sorry, Smokey. You were over the line, that's a foul.

Smokey: B.S. Mark it 8, Dude. (The Dude is keeping score).

Walter Sobchak: Uh, excuse me. Mark it zero. Next frame.

Smokey: B.S., Walter. Mark it 8, Dude.

Walter Sobchak: Smokey, this is not 'Nam. This is bowling. There are rules.

The key thing to note here is next Walter pulls out a gun. During a bowling game. If you aren't laughing at this you're probably dead. Mark it zero!

The Dude: And, you know, he's got emotional problems, man.

Walter Sobchak: You mean ... beyond pacifism?

Walter was in 'Nam. And he's not afraid to let you know it.

The Dude: Did you ever hear of the Seattle Seven?

Maude Lebowski: Mmm.

The Dude: That was me ... and six other guys.

This encapsulates the type of subtle humor that The Big Lebowski is full of. It's hard to tell if Maude has actually heard of The Seattle Seven; but The Dude fills her in with a detail that would seem fairly obvious.

The Dude: Yeah, well. The Dude abides.

Sam Elliot (as a sort of narrator cowboy): The Dude abides. I don't know about you but I take comfort in that. It's good knowin' he's out there. The Dude. Takin' 'er easy for all us sinners. Shoosh. I sure hope he makes the finals.

The ending of the movie, a very western feel. The Dude abides. I do indeed take comfort in that.