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I was wondering...

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Hey you guys, sorry if any of you dont think this a great topic..

I am in highschool and for theatre class we have to do a monolouge 4 to 5 minutes long and I would preferably do one from an old movie..I was just wondering if and of you have any ideas of a movie you know with a good monolouge in it..

thanks!

phoebe

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I think it *is* a great topic, Phoebe (great name too!). Alas, there probably aren't many 4-5 minute long monologues in the movies, since they'd rarely keep the general public's interest riveted for that long. Still there are some great monologues or near monologues. I'll toss out a few, others may well think of better ones.

 

Some of the 'good guy's' longish sequences from Twelve Angry Men can't be too bad. There's also a great monologue in The Fountainhead (that's the one bout the architect, right, not Atlas Shrugged? --always mix those novels/movies up), but of course Ayn Rand's philosophy isn't everyone's cup of tea. It isn't mine either, but the movie, and the monologue, are still great!

 

Then we can't overlook To Kill a Mockingbird, which should have lots of great material for you. Possibly you could 'stitch together' a monologue from some of Bogie's lines in Casablanca. Oh, and one more, Paul Newman's summation to the jury in The Verdict. That's the newer movie of that title, not the old one, but possibly it's still old enough now to fall in the 'classic' category; great movie in any case.

 

Well, that's enough from me. Maybe some other folks will be more discriminating.

 

Ike

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Hi! Many great classic films are also plays like "The Philadelphia Story," "The Women" and "Of Mice and Men." There are lots of great monologues out there from movies and since they are also in play form should be readily available. Good luck and let us know which one you chose!

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Thank you guys yall have great suggestions.. I've been thinking about it all day and I found my self stuck.. I couldnt think of any thing, so thank you I'll check some of those out..

ike, I love your idea about twelve angry men, last year I was actually in a play of that movie but we had to change it around because we hade boys and girls.. great movie

balletstar86.. first off WELCOME! I just saw your post, thanks for your suggestions I love the philadelphia story...great ideas.

 

-phoebe

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Spencer Tracy's closing monologue in Guess Who's Coming to Dinner? Is it suppose to be funny? Maybe you and a partner can do the classic Who's on First?

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You might want to check out Watch on the Rhine which will be airing on TCM tomorrow (Friday) afternoon at 4 PM ET. It's excellent!

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phoebe, of course, I have no idea what the criteria is for your class, but since I teach drama, I thought I'd throw in my 2 cents...you should check with your teacher (if you haven't already) about doing a monologue from a film rather than a play. It has been my experience that most acting teachers/classes want students to work on material from a published play, not a film, tv show, or one of those pieces from a book of original monologues.

 

Also, 4-5 minutes is very long for a monologue. It will be tough to find one that long, although there are a few out there. 1-2 minutes is usually the standard length. One thing that I do with my students is piece together a monologue from an entire scene of a play, taking out the other characters' lines. This is an accepted practice at most theatre auditions. I had a beautiful monologue from Tennessee Williams' Summer and Smoke that I performed at several auditions, that I pieced together that way. Just an idea for you.

 

Sandy K

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I would like to suggest the 1967 movie "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner". Spencer Tracy has to make up his mind about the engagement of his daughter to Sidney Poitier. At the end of this movie Spencer Tracy gives one of the best monologues ever recorded on film. I believe his monologue is close to five minutes long. You should study Spencer Tracy's technique and delivery as he delivers his monologue. You will be enchanted and mesmerized.

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thank you guys for yalls suggestions, sandy k thanks for your idea thats what I am thinking about doing because like people have said it is really hard finding monolouges that long.. at first our teacher told us it had to be 5-10 minutes long and we talked her to bring it down a bit.

P.S. thats really cool you teach drama!

-phoebe

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If you are still interested in monologues you might want to rent "Mrs. Miniver" with Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon. At the end of the movie when Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon are worshiping in the bomb out church, the preacher gives an uplifting speech of hope, strength and endurance to the worshipers who have experienced and come to the conclusion that the war has come to the their very own back yards.

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Years ago, when I had to prepare a monologue for an acting class, I had just seen the movie HOLIDAY with Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn, and thought that might be a good source. So I checked out the original play by Philip Barry from the library.

 

In it, I found this wonderful speech from Nick Potter on how he invented the bottle -- and it wasn't in the movie! I found out that author Donald Ogden Stewart, who played Nick Potter in the original stage production, had written the monologue himself. It was also Stewart who adapted the play for the screen, and I guess he left it out of the screenplay for personal reasons.

 

Anyway, I successfully used "How I Invented The Bottle" as a comedy audition piece for several years, and directors always asked me where I found it!

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Great topic! Greta Garbo's abdication speech in "Queen Christina" might be too lofty but the way she delivers it, chills go up and down your spine because of its power. Vivien Leigh's monologue toward the end of "Gone With the Wind," when she's comforting Ashley over the death of Melanie and Scarlett realizes that she's loved only an illusion, is also memorable. How about Katherine Hepburn and Liz Taylor in "Suddenly, Last Summer"? Liz's long monologue toward the end, when she remembers what happened to her cousin Sebastian "suddenly, last summer" is unforgettable. Liz shines again in "Taming of the Shrew" when she's at the banquet toward the end of the movie and she delivers her reasons why she loves that lumbering, lovable, macho man named Richard Burton. And don't forget Bette Davis as the school mar'm in "The Corn is Green" and she talks with her protegee about the power of learning and dedication.

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given by Maggie Smith in monologues in "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie".

 

Okay, she turned out to be a bit wrong, but still they sounded great when she intoned them to "her girls".

 

There's a nice little speech in "Harvey" that is in the play, and of course for some real frenzied melodrama, there are always lines from "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf" one can use about the nonexistent baby.

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I just saw a film which I hadn't seen previously that includes a great, long monologue that goes with this topic (even though the time has long since past). In any case, Gary Cooper's speech near the end of "The Fountainhead (1949)" is unforgettable!

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I recently saw a documentary on Ayn Rand who wrote the Fountainhead. That speech took her an unbelievable amount of time to write.

 

Anyway, this is a funny story: When Rand came to the U.S. from Russia, she worked as an extra in films and kept a diary. Among her favorites was Gary Cooper.

 

Years later, Cooper starred in The Fountainhead, and Rand posed for a photo with him. She was a small woman. In the photo, she is gazing up at him with stars in her eyes, practically drooling, and who could blame her?

 

The joke of the whole thing is, this woman had one of the great intellects. And at the end of the Fountainhead, Cooper told her he had never really understood the big speech. Not that he was stupid, of course, but she could be pretty out there. I thought it was a cute story.

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Another long monologue can be found in a film that recently premiered on TCM called "The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943)". Some of it has been transcribed in the quotes section for this movie on imdb.com, but not all of it. In the final third of the film, Anton Walbrook's German officer character gives a stirring speech about why England, in lieu of his native land, now feels like home to him. There were also some strikingly prescient words spoken by his character wrt fighting against an enemy that doesn't fight by the rules (of decency)!

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i had to do a monologue in a drama class last year and i found the script for The Philadelphia Story and Arsenic and Old Lace so i really wanted to do one of those but we couldn't cross gender and there weren't any ones long enough for a girl. i ended up doing one from a play that i had never heard of. anyway this was kind of irrelevant but i just thought i'd share and i hope you have better luck. =D

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