Chinatown (1974) quotes

Director
Sidney Lumet.

Cast
Jack Nicholson.
Faye Dunaway.
John Huston.

A private detective hired to expose an adulterer finds himself caught up in a web of deceit, corruption, and murder.

Forget it, Jake. It’s Chinatown.
– Walsh

Are you alone?
– Ida Sessions
Isn’t everybody?
– Jake Gittes

‘Course I’m respectable. I’m old. Politicians, ugly buildings, and whores all get respectable if they last long enough.
– Noah Cross

Can you believe it? We’re in the middle of a drought, and the water commissioner drowns. Only in L.A.
– Morty

All right, Curly. Enough’s enough. You can’t eat the Venetian blinds. I just had them installed on Wednesday.
– Jake Gittes

You’re a very nosy fellow, kitty cat. Huh? You know what happens to nosy fellows? Huh? No? Wanna guess? Huh? No? Okay. They lose their noses.
– Man with Knife
Next time you lose the whole thing. Cut it off and feed it to my goldfish.
– Man with Knife

My goodness, what happened to your nose?
– Yelburton
I cut myself shaving.
– Jake Gittes
You ought to be more careful. That must really smart.
– Yelburton

Do you accept people of the Jewish persuasion?
– Jake Gittes
I’m sorry, we do not.
– Mr. Palmer
Don’t apologize – neither does Dad.
– Jake Gittes

What can I tell you, kid? You’re right. When you’re right, you’re right, and you’re right.
– Jake Gittes

How’d you get past the guard?
– Lt. Escobar
Well, to tell you the truth, I lied a little.
– Jake Gittes

What happened to your nose, Gittes? Somebody slammed a bedroom window on it?
– Loach
Nope. Your wife got excited. She crossed her legs a little too quick. You understand what I mean, pal?
– Jake Gittes

You’re dumber than you think I think you are.
– Jake Gittes

Mulvihill! What are you doing here?
– Jake Gittes
They shut my water off. What’s it to you?
– Mulvihill
How’d you find out about it? You don’t drink it; you don’t take a bath in it… They wrote you a letter. But then you have to be able to read.
– Jake Gittes

May I speak frankly, Mrs. Mulwray.
– Jake Gittes
You may if you can, Mr. Gittes.
– Evelyn Mulwray

But, Mrs. Mulwray, I goddamn near lost my nose. And I like it. I like breathing through it. And I still think you’re hiding something.
– Jake Gittes

You’ve got a nasty reputation, Mr. Gittes. I like that.
– Noah Cross

So there’s this guy Walsh, do you understand? He’s tired of screwin’ his wife… So his friend says to him, “Hey, why don’t you do it like the Chinese do?” So he says, “How do the Chinese do it?” And the guy says, “Well, the Chinese, first they screw a little bit, then they stop, then they go and read a little Confucius, come back, screw a little bit more, then they stop again, go and they screw a little bit… then they go back and they screw a little bit more and then they go out and they contemplate the moon or something like that. Makes it more exciting.” So now, the guy goes home and he starts screwin’ his own wife, see. So he screws her for a little bit and then he stops, and he goes out of the room and reads Life Magazine. Then he goes back in, he starts screwin’ again. He says, “Excuse me for a minute, honey.” He goes out and he smokes a cigarette. Now his wife is gettin’ sore as hell. He comes back in the room, he starts screwin’ again. He gets up to start to leave again to go look at the moon. She looks at him and says, “Hey, what’s the matter with ya? You’re screwin’ just like a Chinaman!”
– Jake Gittes