In this lesson, you will learn expressions directly from Italian films that you can use in everyday conversations (and that will surprise Italians!).


QUOTES from Italian movies that we use DAILY

Remember that you will die (“Nothing Left to Do But Cry”, 1984)

The quote “Remember that you will die” comes from the Italian movie “Nothing Left to Do But Cry” from 1984, directed by Massimo Troisi and Roberto Benigni.

The protagonists travel back in time and find themselves in a Tuscan village in 1492. The phrase is said several times consecutively by a friar.

It reflects the theme of death present in the film in a light and humorous way, typical of the comic style of the directors Troisi and Benigni.

The quote is a translation of the famous Latin phrase “Memento mori” (reminders of death and the brevity of life), which encourages people to live a full life with this awareness.

After the movie’s release, the Italian quote became very popular and it has been used by several Italian comedians over the years, always with a humorous connotation. As a result, Italians also frequently use it, both to encourage the interlocutor to enjoy the moment and life, keeping in mind its transience, and in an ironic sense.

And I’ll pay! (“47 Morto che parla”, 1950)

The quote belongs to Totò (in the character of a stingy baron) and it’s one of his most famous lines.

In the movie, Totò, whenever someone is wasting the money that he offered, he insists on specifying that he’s always the one that has to spend the money.

This expression is still used daily, especially by those who have to pay for others.

For example, parents say it to their children, a colleague or friend who ends up always paying for everyone, and so on.

Good morning, princess! (“Life is beautiful”, 1997)

The quote Good morning, princess!is from the Italian movie “Life is Beautiful“, directed by Roberto Benigni and released in 1997.

In the movie, the character played by Roberto Benigni, Guido, uses this phrase as a greeting to express his love for Dora and his desire to show her beauty and joy even in the darkness and tragedy of the Holocaust.

“Life is beautiful” is set during the Holocaust, and Guido tries to protect his son and his wife from the brutal reality of the concentration camp they’re in by turning their situation into a game of imagination, to give them moments of happiness in such a dramatic context.

Today, we use this quote both with the same original affectionate nuance and in a more ironic sense (if someone wakes up late or with a completely upset face).

I can neither go down nor climb up (“Three men and a Leg”, 1997)

This quote is from the movie “Three men and a Leg“, a famous Italian comedy from 1997 directed by Aldo, Giovanni and Giacomo, who are also the protagonists of the movie.

Three friends find themselves involved in a series of obstacles and comedic situations as they try to deliver a wooden leg (an expensive sculpture by a famous artist).

Aldo says this phrase because, after getting out of the car to look for Giacomo, he ventures among the rocks in flip-flops and gets stuck.

Today, this expression is used to indicate a problematic situation where any solution could lead to a negative outcome.

My carpenter could do it better for 30,000 lire (“Three men and a Leg”, 1997)

It is used to criticize the quality of a work or product that, nonetheless, cost a lot.

It suggests that it would have been possible to achieve a better result at a lower price, perhaps from one’s own “trusted man”.

This quote also comes from the movie “Three men and a Leg”.

Giovanni uses it in reference to the sculpture (which he believes is not worth its cost).

It is still used today, although it sounds a bit anachronistic since it mentions lire.

Supercazzola! (“My friends”, 1975)

Supercazzola” is a word invented by the actor Ugo Tognazzi during rhe filming of the movie.

It is a phrase without any logical sense, formed by a series of words put together at random, often used to deceive and create confusion in the person it’s told to.

The sweet life (“La dolce vita”, 1960)

This quote comes from the movie with the same title.

it is pronounced by Marcello Mastroianni (the movie’s protagonist).

“Sweet life” refers to the worldly, carefree, and frivolous lifestyle in Italy (especially in Rome) between the late 1950s and early 1960s.

Today, it generally indicates a frivolous, superficial, and empty lifestyle dedicated to worldly pleasures.

Things from another world (“Things from another world”, 2011)

This quote comes from the movie with the same name, directed by Francesco Patierno in 2011.

It is used to refer to extraordinary situations or events, outside the ordinary, that leave us amazed and astonished.

Alternatively, with a negative connotation, it emphasizes distrust towards something that seems absurd, unbelievable, or fake.

For example, if someone says that he has done something extraordinarily incredible, but we don’t believe him, we can say, “Stop telling things from another world, nobody believes you anymore!”.

Or, if I see a sensational acrobatic show, I can say “Wow, things from another world!”.

Laughing is the best remedy (“Il professor Cenerentolo”, 2015)

It means that when you laugh, you feel better, happier, and less stressed.

This quote is from the movie “Il professor Cenerentolo” (2015), directed by Leonardo Pieraccioni.

We hope you enjoyed this article and that it was useful to learn something new in a fu

If you want to know How to Learn a Language by Watching Films And TV Series, don’t forget to take a look at the lesson on this topic!

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