Klaatu
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Quotes for
Klaatu (Character)
from The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

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The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)
[last lines]
Klaatu: I am leaving soon, and you will forgive me if I speak bluntly. The universe grows smaller every day, and the threat of aggression by any group, anywhere, can no longer be tolerated. There must be security for all, or no one is secure. Now, this does not mean giving up any freedom, except the freedom to act irresponsibly. Your ancestors knew this when they made laws to govern themselves and hired policemen to enforce them. We, of the other planets, have long accepted this principle. We have an organization for the mutual protection of all planets and for the complete elimination of aggression. The test of any such higher authority is, of course, the police force that supports it. For our policemen, we created a race of robots. Their function is to patrol the planets in spaceships like this one and preserve the peace. In matters of aggression, we have given them absolute power over us. This power cannot be revoked. At the first sign of violence, they act automatically against the aggressor. The penalty for provoking their action is too terrible to risk. The result is, we live in peace, without arms or armies, secure in the knowledge that we are free from aggression and war. Free to pursue more... profitable enterprises. Now, we do not pretend to have achieved perfection, but we do have a system, and it works. I came here to give you these facts. It is no concern of ours how you run your own planet, but if you threaten to extend your violence, this Earth of yours will be reduced to a burned-out cinder. Your choice is simple: join us and live in peace, or pursue your present course and face obliteration. We shall be waiting for your answer. The decision rests with you.

Klaatu: I'm worried about Gort. I'm afraid of what he might do if anything should happen to me.
Helen: Gort? But he's a robot. Without you, what could he do?
Klaatu: There's no limit to what he could do. He could destroy the Earth.

Mr. Harley: Your impatience is quite understandable.
Klaatu: I'm impatient with stupidity. My people have learned to live without it.
Mr. Harley: I'm afraid my people haven't. I'm very sorry... I wish it were otherwise.

Klaatu: We have come to visit you in peace and with goodwill.

Klaatu: I won't resort to threats, Mr. Harley. I merely tell you the future of your planet is at stake.

Barnhardt: Have you tested this theory?
Klaatu: I find it works well enough to get me from one planet to another.

Helen: I thought you were...
Klaatu: I was.

Klaatu: You have faith, Professor Barnhardt?
Barnhardt: It isn't faith that makes good science, Mr. Klaatu, it's curiosity. Sit down, please. There are several thousand questions I'd like to ask you.

Barnhardt: One thing, Mr. Klaatu: suppose this group should reject your proposals. What is the alternative?
Klaatu: I'm afraid there is no alternative. In such a case, the planet Earth would have to be... eliminated
Barnhardt: Such power exists?
Klaatu: I assure you, such power exists.

Klaatu: I am fearful when I see people substituting fear for reason.

Bobby Benson: [indicating grave marker during a visit to Arlington] That's my father. He was killed at Anzio.
Klaatu: Did all those people die in wars?
Bobby Benson: Most of 'em. Didn't you ever hear of the Arlington Cemetery?
Klaatu: No, I'm afraid not.
Bobby Benson: You don't seem to know much about anything, do you, Mr. Carpenter?
Klaatu: Well, I'll tell you, Bobby, I've been away a long time. Very far away.
Bobby Benson: Is it different where you've been? Don't they have places like this?
Klaatu: Well, they have cemeteries, but not like this one. You see, they don't have any wars.
Bobby Benson: Gee, that's a good idea.

Klaatu: [after reading the Gettysburg Address at the Lincoln Memorial] Those are great words.
Klaatu: [turns to look at the statue of Lincoln] He must have been a great man.
Bobby Benson: Well sure.
Klaatu: [walking out of the memorial, then turning to look at Lincoln again] That's the kind of man I would like to talk to.

[Klaatu is revived by Gort after being fatally shot]
Helen: I - I thought you were...
Klaatu: I was.
Helen: You mean... he has the power of life and death?
Klaatu: No. That power is reserved to the Almighty Spirit. This technique, in some cases, can restore life for a limited period.
Helen: But... how long?
Klaatu: You mean how long will I live? That no one can tell.

Reporter: I suppose you are just as scared as the rest of us.
Klaatu: In a different way, perhaps. I am fearful when I see people substituting fear for reason.

Klaatu: Perhaps before deciding on a course of action, you'd want to know more about the people here - to orient yourself in a strange environment.
Mrs. Barley: There's nothing strange about Washington, Mr. Carpenter.
Klaatu: A person from another planet might disagree with you.
Mrs. Barley: If you want my opinion, he came from right here on Earth. And you know where I mean.
Mr. Krull: They woudn't come in spaceships, they'd come in airplanes.
Mrs. Barley: I woudn't be too sure about that.

Mrs. Crockett: You're a long way from home, aren't you, Mr. Carpenter?
Klaatu: How did you know?
Mrs. Crockett: Oh, I can tell a New England accent a mile away.

Klaatu: Gort: Barenga!

Klaatu: Gort! Deglet ovrosco!


The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008)
Polygraph Operator: I'm going to ask you a series of control questions. Are you currently in a seated position?
Klaatu: Yes.
Polygraph Operator: Are you human?
Klaatu: My body is.
Polygraph Operator: Do you feel pain?
Klaatu: My body does.
Polygraph Operator: Are you aware of an impending attack on the planet earth?
Klaatu: You should let me go.
Polygraph Operator: I'll repeat the question.
[he touches the machine and gets a shock]
Klaatu: What gate did you use to enter this base?
Polygraph Operator: East loading door.
Klaatu: How do I get there?
Polygraph Operator: 100 yards left from the back of this building.
Klaatu: Is there a security code?
Polygraph Operator: 4-4-Bravo-3-0.
Klaatu: What size is that suit?
Polygraph Operator: 42 long.
Klaatu: Take it off.

Regina Jackson: What is your purpose in coming here?
Klaatu: There is a gathering of world leaders not far from here; I will explain my purpose to them.
Regina Jackson: I'm afraid thats not possible. Perhaps you should explain yourself to me instead.
Klaatu: Do you speak for the entire human race?
Regina Jackson: I speak for the President of the United States. Now, please; tell me why have you come to our planet.
Klaatu: *Your* planet.
Regina Jackson: Yes; this is our planet.
Klaatu: No, it is not.

Klaatu: The decision is made.

Klaatu: [to Helen] Your professor is right. At the precipice we change.

Helen Benson: I need to know what's happening.
Klaatu: This planet is dying. The human race is killing it.
Helen Benson: So you've come here to help us.
Klaatu: No, *I* didn't.
Helen Benson: You said you came to save us.
Klaatu: I said I came to save the Earth.
Helen Benson: You came to save the Earth... from us. You came to save the Earth *from* us.
Klaatu: We can't risk the survival of this planet for the sake of one species.
Helen Benson: What are you saying?
Klaatu: If the Earth dies, you die. If you die, the Earth survives. There are only a handful of planets in the cosmos that are capable of supporting complex life...
Helen Benson: You can't do this.
Klaatu: ...this one can't be allowed to perish.
Helen Benson: We can change. We can still turn things around.
Klaatu: We've watched, we've waited and hoped that you *would* change.
Helen Benson: Please...
Klaatu: It's reached the tipping point. We have to act.
Helen Benson: Please...
Klaatu: We'll undo the damage you've done and give the Earth a chance to begin again.
Helen Benson: Don't do this. Please, we can change. We can change.
Klaatu: The decision is made. The process has begun.
Helen Benson: Oh God.

Professor Barnhardt: There must be alternatives. You must have some technology that could solve our problem.
Klaatu: Your problem is not technology. The problem is you. You lack the will to change.
Professor Barnhardt: Then help us change.
Klaatu: I cannot change your nature. You treat the world as you treat each other.
Professor Barnhardt: But every civilization reaches a crisis point eventually.
Klaatu: Most of them don't make it.
Professor Barnhardt: Yours did. How?
Klaatu: Our sun was dying. We had to evolve in order to survive.
Professor Barnhardt: So it was only when your world was threated with destruction that you became what you are now.
Klaatu: Yes.
Professor Barnhardt: Well that's where we are. You say we're on the brink of destruction and you're right. But it's only on the brink that people find the will to change. Only at the precipice do we evolve. This is our moment. Don't take it from us, we are close to an answer.

Klaatu: There are some things I can't do.
Jacob Benson: But you have powers.
Klaatu: I'm sorry.
Jacob Benson: Please. Please!
Klaatu: Jacob, nothing ever truly dies. The universe wastes nothing. Everything is simply, transformed.
Jacob Benson: Just leave me alone.

Helen Benson: It's alright. He's here to help.
Klaatu: There's another side to you. I feel it now.
Helen Benson: [referring to large, black cloud] Is that how it ends?
Klaatu: Yes.
Helen Benson: You can't stop it?
Klaatu: I don't know. It would come at a price, to you and your way of life.
Helen Benson: But we can change, you know that now. Please, please, just give us a chance.
Klaatu: I'll try. I must get back to the city.

Professor Barnhardt: I have so many questions to ask you.
Helen Benson: [addressing Klaatu about the music playing] It's Bach.
Klaatu: It's beautiful.
Professor Barnhardt: So we're not so different after all.
Klaatu: I wish that were true.

Regina Jackson: My name is Regina Jackson. I'm the Secretary of Defense of the United States of America.
Klaatu: This body will take some getting used to.
Regina Jackson: I've been sent here to determine who or what you represent and what your intentions are.
Klaatu: It feels unreal to me. Alien. It will take time to adapt.
Helen Benson: What were you before you were human?
Klaatu: Different.
Helen Benson: Different how?
Klaatu: It would only frighten you.

Regina Jackson: I want to apologize to you; it seems we got off to a bad start.
Klaatu: It seems we did.

Klaatu: [repeated line with minor variations] I need to get back to the city.

[Seated at a McDonald's, Klaatu begins speaking to Mr. Wu in Mandarin]
Klaatu: You've been out of contact for a long time.
Mr. Wu: I had a dangerous assignment. This is hostile territory.
Klaatu: I've noticed. I was hoping I could reason with them.
Mr. Wu: I'm afraid they are not a reasonable race. I've been living amongst them for seventy years now. I know them well.
Klaatu: And?
Mr. Wu: Any attempt to intercede with them would be futile. They are destructive, and they won't change.
Klaatu: Is that your official report?
Mr. Wu: The tragedy is, they know what's going to become of them.
[Both Klaatu and Wu turn to look at Helen, Jacob and Wu's grandson who are seated at another table]
Mr. Wu: They sense it. But they can't seem to do anything about it.
[They switching to speaking English]
Mr. Wu: I'm staying.
Klaatu: You can't stay here.
Mr. Wu: I can and I will.
Klaatu: If you stay, you'll die.
Mr. Wu: I know. This is my home now.
Klaatu: You yourself called them a destructive race.
Mr. Wu: That's true. But still, there is another side. You see, I... I love them. It is a very strange thing. I... I... I can't find a way to explain it to you. For many years I cursed my luck for being sent here. Human life is difficult. But as this life is coming to an end... I consider myself lucky... to have lived it.

Jacob Benson: I told Helen we should kill you.
Klaatu: Yes, I heard that.
Jacob Benson: I didn't mean it though.
Klaatu: You didn't?
Jacob Benson: Well, not *anymore*. So what's going to happen to us?
Klaatu: I was just wondering the same thing.

Klaatu: [to Gort, after being shot by the army] Klaatu barada nikto.

Jacob Benson: Mom!
[Jacob, bleeding from his nose, collapses in the arms of Helen]
Helen Benson: [to Klaatu] Whats happening to him? Jacob!
Klaatu: [checking Jacob] They are inside him... He is dying.
Helen Benson: [pleading Klaatu] Help him.
Helen Benson: [whipes blood from her own nose, discovering that she is also dying] Help him!... Please!

Helen Benson: Why did you come here?
Klaatu: I came to save the world.
Helen Benson: From what?