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16 Kick-Butt Military Movie Quotes That Will Fill You With Adrenaline

Get ready to tingle with patriotism.

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A Few Good Men (1992)

“I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide, and then questions the manner in which I provide it. I would rather you just said thank you, and went on your way. Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a weapon, and stand a post. Either way, I don’t give a damn what you think you are entitled to.” Watch a clip here.
—Col. Jessep (Jack Nicholson)

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Apocalypse Now (1979)

“I love the smell of napalm in the morning.” Watch a clip here.

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The Great Escape (1963)

Col. Von Luger: Group Captain Ramsey, in the past four years the Reich has been forced to spend an enormous amount of time, energy, manpower and equipment hunting down prisoner of war officers.
Group Capt. Ramsey: At least it’s rather nice to know you’re wanted, isn’t it? Watch a clip here.

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The Longest Day (1962)

Brigadier General Norman Cota: I don’t have to tell you the story. You all know it. Only two kinds of people are gonna stay on this beach: those that are already dead and those that are gonna die. Now get off your butts. You guys are the Fighting 29th. Watch a clip here.

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Stripes (1981)

“We’re all very different people. We’re not Watusi. We’re not Spartans. We’re Americans, with a capital ‘A.’ You know what that means? Do ya? That means that our forefathers were kicked out of every decent country in the world. We are the wretched refuse. We’re the underdog. We’re mutts! Here’s proof: his nose is cold! But there’s no animal that’s more faithful, that’s more loyal, more loveable than the mutt. Who saw ‘Old Yeller?’ Who cried when Old Yeller got shot at the end? I cried my eyes out. So we’re all dogfaces, we’re all very, very different, but there is one thing that we all have in common: we were all stupid enough to enlist in the Army.” Watch a clip here.

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Black Hawk Down (2001)

“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.” Watch a clip here.

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Patton (1970)

“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.” Watch a clip here.

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Dr. Strangelove (1964)

“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.” Watch a clip here.

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Glory (1989)

“And what are you? So full of hate you want to go out and fight everybody! Because you’ve been whipped and chased by hounds. Well that might not be living, but it sure as hell ain’t dying. And dying’s been what these white boys have been doing for going on three years now! Dying by the thousands! Dying for you, fool! I know, ’cause I dug the graves. And all this time I keep askin’ myself, when, O Lord, when it’s gonna be our time?” Watch a clip here.

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Pearl Harbor (2001)

“A brilliant man will find a way not to fight a war.” Watch a clip here.

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All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)

“At the next war let all the Kaisers, presidents and generals and diplomats go into a big field and fight it out first among themselves.” Watch a clip here.

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The Americanization of Emily (1964)

“War isn’t hell at all. It’s man at his best, the highest morality he’s capable of. It’s not war that’s insane, you see. It’s the morality of it. It’s not greed or ambition that makes war: it’s goodness. Wars are always fought for the best of reasons — for liberation or manifest destiny. Always against tyranny and always in the interest of humanity. So far this war, we’ve managed to butcher some 10 million humans in the interest of humanity. Next war it seems we’ll have to destroy all of man in order to preserve his damn dignity. It’s not war that’s unnatural to us, it’s virtue. As long as valor remains a virtue, we shall have soldiers. So, I preach cowardice. Through cowardice, we shall all be saved.” Watch a clip here.

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Cromwell (1970)

“Every man who wages war believes God is on his side. I’ll warrant God should often wonder who is on his.” Watch a clip here.

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Saving Private Ryan (1998)

“I just know that every man I kill the farther away from home I feel.” Watch a clip here.

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Private Benjamin (1980)

Judy Benjamin: To be truthful with you, I can’t sleep in a room with 20 strangers.
Capt. Doreen Lewis: Oh dear.
Judy Benjamin: And I mean look at this place. The army couldn’t afford drapes? I’ll be up at the crack of dawn here! Watch a clip here.

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Sands of Iwo Jima (1949)

Pfc. Al Thomas: That’s war.
Pfc. Charlie Bass: What’s war?
Pfc. Al Thomas: Trading real estate for men. Watch a clip here.

Reader's Digest
Originally Published in Reader's Digest

Andy Simmons
Andy Simmons is a features editor at Reader's Digest.