In 2004, a small, innocuous comedy called Napoleon Dynamite premiered. As with other irreverent teen comedies like Superbad and Juno, it wasn’t afraid to focus on celebrating the ‘weird’ kids in high school. What was special about Napoleon Dynamite was that it seemed totally organically born. It was like the film crew just set up cameras and filmed actual people living in rural Idaho, a celebration of eccentricity.
The dialogue -oh, the dialogue!- gave us a goldmine of quotes. Nearly every scene provided a random assortment of inane hilarity, delivered with deadpan seriousness by every cast member. Because there was nothing ironic or tongue-in-cheek about the characters, it made the dialogue feel both absurd and absurdly real. Here are fifteen of the best quotes from the film, but gosh! there were really too many to choose from.
Updated on April 30th, 2021 by Kayleena Pierce-Bohen: While it’s hard to believe it’s been 15 years since the release of Napoleon Dynamite, there has been no shortage of movies inspired by its quirky humor. Its unforgettable dialogue ensures its place as an undeniable comedic titan despite its humble budget. It might have been set in the ’80s with the awkward humor of the ’00s, but it remains a timeless classic for the ages thanks to its always-applicable quotes.
15 “Kip Bring Me My Chapstick!”
The high school years can seem like they’re made up of one catastrophe after another, with seemingly innocuous problems becoming matters of life or death. Napoleon’s day-destroying catastrophe? Running out of chapstick while stuck at school, which prompts him to quickly call his older brother Kip with a desperate plea.
Kip, as calm as an ambulance dispatcher, explains that the school nurse has five chapstick tubes in her drawer, more than enough to solve Napoleon’s emergency. Napoleon, in his infinite wisdom, doesn’t condone the sick and twisted logic of using someone else’s chapstick and must brave chapped lips for the remainder of the day.
14 “Worst Day Of My Life, What Do You Think?!”
As if the chapstick debacle wasn’t bad enough, Napoleon had to get through an entire day of high school just to come home and find that Kip had not only eaten all the chips but was allowed to pass off dinner duty for Tina because he was chatting with “hot babes”.
When Napoleon’s absentee grandmother asked him how his day went, he was sure to let her know it was the worst day of his life, especially since they were out of steaks, and he’d have to fend for himself as far as dinner was concerned.
13 “I Caught You A Delicious Bass.”
Napoleon does a lot of things to secure Deb’s affections (including a majestic interpretive dance), and while he might not have been able to pull off any grand romantic gestures, he does -with the best intent- offer her some delicious bass. Just like in the game of tetherball, sometimes he swings and makes contact, and sometimes he misses and gets hit in the face, but he always tries his hardest.
Luckily, Deb decides to play tetherball with him, which means that even if Napoleon loses the game, he’s still won at life. Deb doesn’t seem to find it in the least bit strange that he offers her fish as a courting gift, which is one of the reasons they’re so perfect for one another.
12 “I Told You! I Spent It With My Uncle In Alaska Hunting Wolverines!”
Where a teenager spends their summer can be a big deal, with the one who’s stayed home doing nothing often deemed the biggest loser. Not one to be outdone by Don, one of Napoleon’s biggest bullies, he concocts a wild story about how he wiled away the summer days during a chat in the locker room.
Unfortunately at this point in the movie, Napoleon hasn’t learned how to be his authentic self, so he resorts to hiding behind tall tales and getting defensive so that the bullies will leave him alone. Eventually, he’ll learn to stop trying to impress people he doesn’t even like.
11 “How Much Do You Want To Bet I Can Throw This Football Over Them Mountains?”
Overly convinced of his self-importance, Napoleon’s Uncle Rico wanders through life with a pigskin in his hand wondering what would have happened if coach had put him in during the fourth. There’s no doubt in his mind they’d have gone all the way to state. No doubt!
Uncle Rico does the opposite of what a loving, concerned adult relative would do, and tries to make Napoleon feel horrible about himself while simultaneously blaming everyone around him for his problems. When he can’t con any more people into getting involved with his pyramid schemes, Napoleon quite rightly drives him out of town with a strong arm and some well-aimed fruit.
10 “Tina, You Fat Lard, Come Get Some Dinner. Tina! Eat The FOOD!”
Life is tough for Napoleon Dynamite. He lives with his grandmother, has to put up with being bossed around by his washed-up-high-school-football star Uncle Rico, and getting picked on by his deadbeat older brother Kip (who somehow manages to get all the hot babes).
One of Napoleon’s frequent punishments for being lazy around the house or sassing family members at the dinner table is being made to feed the llama that lives out back. If he could, he’d probably chuck her food right in her fat furry face, but then she might donkey kick him in the throat. Or just bite his face off.
9 “What Are You Going To Do Today, Napoleon?” – Kid On Bus. “Whatever I Feel Like I Wanna Do, GOSH!” – Napoleon
Napoleon is a simple man of simple desires. He just wants to be really good at tetherball, learn how to draw really well, and impress Deb enough to maybe get a girlfriend. These are impossible dreams when everyone around you thinks you’re a joke, right down to a random kid on the school bus.
That Napoleon doesn’t just constantly hit people in the face on a regular basis is a testament to his spiritual fortitude and mental acumen. The hitting he reserves for Kip, who’s not a very supportive brother and prefers the company of internet friends to his own flesh and blood.
8 “Napoleon, Don’t Be Jealous That I’ve Been Chatting Online With Babes All Day. Besides, We Both Know That I’m Training To Be A Cage Fighter.”
There’s nothing worse than coming home from a long day of being slammed into lockers by Don, ignored by Deb, and made fun of for having excessively chapped lips only to find that your brother’s eaten all the chips. He’ll tell you that he was online chatting with babes all day, which isn’t even a good excuse.
Napoleon knows Kip is delusional, especially since real training to be a cage fighter doesn’t involve eating bags of chips and exercising your fingers on a keyboard. Good thing Kip’s easily distracted so that Napoleon can land one sweet slap with his ninja skills (which he has been practicing, obvs).
7 “Yeah, Right. Who’s The One That Knows Illegal Ninja Moves From The Government?”
Napoleon doesn’t like a lot of people. Probably because they pick on him. But he really hates Don. Don is probably right up there with his Uncle Rico, in terms of people that make his social life suck and make him feel like a FREAKIN IDIOT all the time. So, when Don threatens to kick his ass, Napoleon decides he’s had enough.
It doesn’t matter that Don is the school jock and probably weighs as much as three Napoleon’ put together, assembled like Voltron. The simple fact is, he doesn’t have illegal ninja moves from the government, which Napoleon is going to unleash on him. Or just smack him and run away, because ninjas are super fast.
6 “I See You’re Drinking 1%. Is That ‘Cause You Think You’re Fat? ‘Cause You’re Not. You Could Totally Be Drinking Whole If You Wanted To.”
It’s not always easy getting to know the person you have a crush on. They might think that the ice breaker you use to start a conversation is stupid, or they might be staring at your overly chapped lips and wondering if you have some sort of genetic condition. Or they might only date guys that have sweet mustaches.
When Napoleon spies Deb sitting alone drinking 1% milk in the cafeteria, he sees his chance to make a move. He decides to tell her that if she’s avoiding whole milk because she thinks she’s fat, she doesn’t have to. To him, she’s perfect just the way she is. It’s an inherently sweet message, just poorly executed.
5 “I Don’t Even Have Any Good Skills. You Know, Like Nunchuck Skills, Bow Hunting Skills, Computer Hacking Skills. Girls Only Want Boyfriends Who Have Great Skills!”
How do you win the heart of the girl you’re in love with if you don’t have any skills? While it’s true that Napoleon shot, like, 50 wolverines with a 12-gauge at his uncle’s house one summer, he can’t really prove that to Deb. She would want to see how he did it, and he can’t just teleport 50 wolverines to Idaho.
Pedro has the ability to grow a mustache in like three days. Uncle Rico can throw a football really far. Napoleon can’t even beat a tetherball. Napoleon settles on busting out some sweet dance moves, hoping that will capture Deb’s heart.
4 “It’s Pretty Much My Favorite Animal. It’s Like A Lion And A Tiger Mixed… Bred For Its Skills In Magic.”
In his effort to win over Deb’s heart, Napoleon decides to draw her portrait, but not before practicing his drawing skills on his favorite animal, the liger. Deb isn’t familiar with this majestic beast, but Napoleon soon goes on to explain its finer properties (it’s a mix between a lion and a tiger), and the fact that it has magical abilities.
Perhaps Deb didn’t know that ligers actually exist, and (though they’re rare) are kept at some zoos and natural wildlife preserves. The only thing magical about these fantastic beasts is that they live happy lives, considering that the process of their hybridization often results in a lot of health problems.
3 “You Think Anyone Wants A Roundhouse Kick To The Face While I’m Wearing These Bad Boys? Forget About It.”
Napoleon’s older brother Kip is training to become a cage fighter, so after seeing a frenzied television commercial featuring Rex Kwon Do, he decides to sign up for some of Rex’s martial arts classes. Rex is the real deal – he wears safety glasses whenever he instructs a class and utilizes brightly colored clothing to distract his opponents.
Take his star-spangled sweatpants. Do you think anyone wants to take a roundhouse kick to the face when he’s wearing those bad boys? They’ll be seeing stars and then they’ll be…seeing stars. With the Rex Kwon Do Defense System, you’ll have “the strength of a grizzly.”
2 “Sure, The World Wide Web Is Great, But You, You Make Me Salivate.”
One of the highlights of Napoleon Dynamite comes at the end when the hundreds of hours Kip spent chatting with Lafawnduh online finally pay off, and she agrees to be his wife. Decked out in his finest hip-hop duds, doo-rag, and bling for the big day, he delivers his crowning achievement; wedding vows in the form of a rap.
They include describing how great his love for Lafawnduh, how beautiful she is, and of course, how she measures up to the World Wide Web. They ride off into the sunset to presumably make their first EP and live happily ever after. They may not have made sense to anyone else, but they were perfect for each other.
1 “…Sir Curt Godfrey Of The Nessie Alliance Summoned The Help Of Scotland’s Local Wizards To Cast A Protective Spell Over The Lake And Its Residents, And All Those Who Seek A Peaceful Existence With Our Underwater Ally.”
Public speaking can be excruciating for some people. Getting up in front of several dozen judgmental high school students to talk about current events is just about the worst form of it. Especially when you’re just trying to bring awareness about the peaceful existence of our underwater ally, Nessie of Loch Ness.
Do you think those ungrateful brats did anything about conservation efforts after they heard about the Japanese scientists setting off seismic charges at the bottom of Loch Ness? Heck no! If it weren’t for Sir Godfrey and the local Scottish wizards, Nessie might have been lost forever due to gross human interference. Gosh!
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