The 11 Best Military Movie Quotes

Hollywood has a tendency to mess up uniforms, customs, and tactical thinking when it comes to military movies, but they sure know how to give us quote-worthy characters. From the masterful intro speech of “Patton” to the character of Hoot in “Black Hawk Down,” these are the films that we remember for having characters with great dialogue.

We picked out some of our favorite quotes from classic military films. Here they are:

“I love the smell of napalm in the morning. You know, one time we had a hill bombed, for 12 hours. When it was all over, I walked up. We didn’t find one of ‘em, not one stinkin’ dink body. The smell, you know that gasoline smell, the whole hill. Smelled like … victory. Someday this war’s gonna end.”  — Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore, “Apocalypse Now” (1979)

Apocalypse Now - Robert Duvall as Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore

“You have to think about one shot. One shot is what it’s all about. A deer’s gotta be taken with one shot.” — Michael, “The Deer Hunter” (1978)

The Deer Hunter - Robert Dinero

“Keep the sand out of your weapons, keep those actions clear. I’ll see you on the beach.” — Capt. John Miller, “Saving Private Ryan” (1998)

Saving Private Ryan - Tom Hanks

“When I go home people will ask me, ‘Hey Hoot, why do you do it man? What, you some kinda war junkie?’ You know what I’ll say? I won’t say a goddamn word. Why? They won’t understand. They won’t understand why we do it. They won’t understand that it’s about the men next to you, and that’s it. That’s all it is.”  — Norman “Hoot” Hooten, “Black Hawk Down” (2001)

Black Hawk Down - Eric Bana

“Are you smoking this sh-t so’s to escape from reality? Me, I don’t need this sh-t, I am reality. There’s the way it ought to be, and there’s the way it is.” — Staff Sgt. Barnes, “Platoon” (1986)

Platoon – Tom Berenger as Sgt. Barnes

“Now I want you to remember that no bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country.” — Gen. George Patton, “Patton” (1970)

Patton – George C. Scott as General George Patton

“Mandrake, do you recall what Clemenceau once said about war? … He said war was too important to be left to the generals. When he said that, 50 years ago, he might have been right. But today, war is too important to be left to politicians. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought. I can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration, Communist indoctrination, Communist subversion and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids.” — Gen. Jack D. Ripper, “Dr. Strangelove” (1964)

Sterling Hayden as General Jack D. Ripper

“Are you quitting on me? Well, are you? Then quit, you slimy fucking walrus-looking piece of sh-t! Get the f–k off of my obstacle! Get the f–k down off of my obstacle! NOW! MOVE IT! Or I’m going to rip your balls off, so you cannot contaminate the rest of the world! I will motivate you, Private Pyle, IF IT SHORT-D–KS EVERY CANNIBAL ON THE CONGO!” — Gunnery Sgt. Hartman, “Full Metal Jacket” (1987)

R. Lee Ermey as Gunnery Sgt. Hartman

“Aim small, miss small.” — Capt. Benjamin Martin, “The Patriot” (2000)

The Patriot – Mel Gibson as Benjamin Martin

“All right, sweethearts, what are you waiting for? Breakfast in bed? Another glorious day in the Corps! A day in the Marine Corps is like a day on the farm. Every meal’s a banquet! Every paycheck a fortune! Every formation a parade! I LOVE the Corps!” — Sgt. Apone, “Aliens” (1986)

Aliens Sgt. Apone

“Out here, due process is a bullet!” — Col. Mike Kirby, “The Green Berets” (1968)

Col Mike Kirby The Green Berets

What’s your favorite military quote? Did we miss any? Share yours in the comments.

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