Top 10 Stupid Movie Quotes About Reading

Greg Zimmerman

Staff Writer

Greg Zimmerman blogs about contemporary literary fiction at The New Dork Review of Books and holds down a full-time gig as a trade magazine editor. Follow him on Twitter: @NewDorkReview.

Have you ever had a conversation that consists solely of movie quotes and references? I know! Me too! To be able to do so is a gift…that’s by turns annoying or hilarious, depending on who you’re talking to.

And so, what follows is 10 quotes from good, crappy movies all about books or reading, complete with usage suggestions. Enjoy!


10. “I don’t know how to put this but I’m kind of a big deal. People know me. I’m very important. I have many leather bound books and my apartment smells of rich mahogany.”     — Ron Burgundy, in Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy

(You can drop this in just about any context, and you’re 99 percent assured to get a laugh …and a response about a whale’s vagina.)


9. “So join now, ’cause at the Derek Zoolander Center For Kids Who Can’t Read Good And Wanna Learn To Do Other Stuff Good Too, we teach you that there’s more to life than just being really, really, really good looking. Right kids?” — Derek Zoolander, in Zoolander

(Use this quote verbatim for correcting your dumb friends on Facebook when they make grammar errors. It goes over much better than just telling them they’re idiots.)


8. “And you know what the worst part is? I never learned to read!” —Wayne Campbell, in Wayne’s World

(Good to throw this quote in when you make a boner, and want a humorous way to shrug it off.)


7. “Have you seen my Balzac? … Have you seen my Dickens? … Have you seen my Longfellow? —young Austin Powers, in deleted scene from Austin Powers in Goldmember

(Pretty sure this one requires no suggestions for when to use.)


6. “Muhammed is the most commonly used name on Earth. Read a fucking book for once.” — Fogell/McLovin’, in Superbad

(When something is obvious to you, but obscure to others, this is your go-to quote.)


5. “I don’t read the script. The script reads me.”  — Robert Lazarus, Tropic Thunder

(Hopefully, your friend will immediately rejoin: “What the hell does that even mean?” If not, you can still giggle to yourself.)


4. “Oh, and I might be a charter member of Oprah’s book club.” — John Beckwith, in Wedding Crashers

(Ever try to make yourself seem something you’re not, but then realize you’re talking out of your ass? This quote. It’s all deadly.)


3. “Whoa whoa whoa, Miss Lippy. The part of the story I don’t like is that the little boy gave up looking for Happy after an hour. He didn’t put posters up or anything, he just sat on the porch like a goon and waited. That little boy’s gotta think ‘You got a pet. You got a responsibility.’ If your dog gets lost you don’t look for an hour then call it quits. You get your ass out there and you find that fucking dog.” —Billy Madison, in Billy Madison

(For any instance when someone asks you what you thought of a book or movie you hated.)


2. “So what is it? You’re still sore I never read Moby Dick?” — Jake Taylor, in Major League

(Fellas, is your lady hassling you for something that’s not your fault? Use this quote, and you’re guaranteed to defuse any argument. I mean, probably.)


1. “It’s called reading. Top to bottom, left to right — a group of words together is called a sentence. Take Tylenol for any headaches. Midol for any cramps.” —Richard, in Tommy Boy

(Use this one to any of your neanderthal friends who try to make fun of you for loving to read, or for knowing more things than them as a result of your love of reading. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve trotted this out.)