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Hilarious Lines From Iconic Movies That You Probably Missed


The overlooked scenes from your favorite movies.

One thing I like about comedies is the subtle humor that normally gets missed. It's that special line that makes you go "OOOH," and really makes you smile. It's like a juicy secret someone told you, or some interesting fact you discovered.

A comedy that makes you laugh when you watch is merely getting the job done, but a comedy that you remember for years to come and makes you laugh long after the credits roll becomes truly great.

The Princess Bride


For those of you unable to watch the video for some reason, that is the iconic death of Vizzini in "The Princess Bride" (1987).

The whole scene is great, but the important part here is the setup. Westley States "Iocane Powder is oderless, tasteless, dissolves instantly in liquid, and is among the more deadly poisons known to man."

Later, Prince Humperdinck sniffs the empty vial Westley had the powder in and instantly proclaims...

Iocane Powder, I'd bet my life on it

Iocane Powder, I'd bet my life on it

Iocane Powder, I'd bet my life on it

I always think everything could be a trap...which is why I'm still alive.

How did he know? What clues did he have? Yet, Prince Humperdinck takes a sniff and immediately draws the correct conclusion.

He couldn't taste it, other than being tasteless, the iocane would have killed him. The Dread Pirate Roberts already stated "It is odorless" and Vizzini agreed "I smell nothing."

There are no obvious signs on Vizzini, other than being dead.

Prince Humperdinck was played by Chris Sarandon, and he did a great job of playing the straight man. This line caught me off guard, and still makes me smile.

The Princess Bride is one of my favorite movies. Do not be fooled by the title, it is so much more than a "chick flick." I was incredulous when I first watched it as well, but every minute of this movie is gold.

Ghostbusters investigate the library

This scene is already full of "one liners."

I think the most overlooked line is by Peter Venkman (Bill Murray). Ray (Dan Aykroyd) comes across a stack of books, and says "Symmetrical book stacking. Just like the Philadelphia mass turbulence of 1947."

Peter's response "You're right, no human being would stack books like this," as if there were some other way to stack books.

I feel this line gets lost due to the more popular line by Ray "Listen... do you smell something?"

Venkman's ESP study

I love this scene because it has layers

It's like an onion, the more you pay attention, the more layers it has.

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The first layer is obviously Dr. Venkman is more interested in the blonde student than actually performing his study on ESP. He smiles, flirts, and says she is getting the answers right even though she isn't.

The second layer is that the male student actually gets the last one right, Venkman was holding up a card that has "A couple of wavy lines" on it, but shocks the student anyway.

The final layer is that the male student does appear to have ESP, he just can't control it well. The electric shocks seemed to improve his focus and ability. Watch the clip again.

The male student's first answer was "square" which was technically wrong, because it was a star.

The next card Venkman holds up to the blonde is a circle, which Venkman never shows either student.

The student's next card is a square (as he stated earlier), which he responds "circle" which is what the blonde's card was previously!

Finally, the male student gets it right, stating "a couple of wavy lines."

Dr. Venkman, shocks him anyway!

Venkman's hypothesis is now revealed. He has been studying "the effects of negative reinforcement on ESP ability." And Venkman seems to have found some concrete data here, the student's ESP ability improved after the shock. Venkman doesn't seem to care, and returns to hitting on the blonde.

The cards Dr. Venkman uses are called Zener cards, and they were developed to test ESP.

What is your favorite comedic scene?

Devin Gustus (author) on January 23, 2014:

@sousababy: I plan to add Airplane at some point, I just am not quite as familiar with it as some.


sousababy on January 23, 2014:

The Bill Murray (Dr. Venkman) scene was great. I also enjoy some of the one-liners in the movie Airplane.

CaztyBon on July 20, 2013:

I enjoyed your lens and your right Ghostbusters does have a lot of funny one liners.

ghoststorylover on July 14, 2013:

That's funny, I never paid attention to why Prince Humperdinck thought that's how Vinnzini died. Loved that movie and "Ghostbusters" too. I always thought that "Listen.. do you smell something" was funny. He even acted like he heard something!

abslim lm on June 27, 2013:

Awesome! my favorite line is "Listen... do you smell something?" lol

Mobley5 on June 27, 2013:

Nothing beats a great film for good entertainment and you've covered some great ones!

triley76 on June 24, 2013:

Great lens. The Princess Bride is one of my favorite movies of all time. There are still so many people that, when I suggest they watch it, laugh at me and don't believe it is anything more than a kid movie.

KTPT13 on June 24, 2013:

You're right, I never noticed those lines.

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