Film monologues: the ten greatest

Primarily a theatrical and literary device, the monologue nevertheless enjoys a special place in the realm of cinema. While advocates of realism may dismiss it for its essential artificiality, it cannot be denied that the monologue has framed some of the greatest and most powerful scenes in the history of film. Unfortunately, the words alone can only convey so much of a great soliloquy – there are mannerisms, delivery, filming styles and, most importantly, context that get lost in the process of transferring from screen to paper; nevertheless, this is an attempt to showcase these cinematic moments as best possible within the confines of the written (English) word.

Here, then, are the ten best monologues I have come across:

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I wrote this in 2011 while studying poetry at Monash University. I thought it’d be a fitting first post.

A Review of the Short Film ‘Darkness, Light, Darkness’ by Jan Švankmajer

Little stings like incompetence:
the knowledge
that my body, at the
peak of its faculties,
will give way;
and what I’ve learned with
age (if not posted in blogs)
will revert to vapour.

I acquire whilst nostalgic
for a
limbless state:
the safety of ignorance;
the freedom of naiveté;
dependence of infancy.
I acquire and
exchange, clinging to parabolae.
I acquire,

but the silo bursts.
The metal rusts.
The salt floods out
for ants and birds,
dissolving in the morning dew.