Ruthless People (1986)
Barbara: So, when do I get out of here?
Sandy: As soon as Mr. Stone pays the ransom.
Barbara: Well what's the problem? What is the ransom?
Sandy: It... it was $500,000.
Barbara: That shouldn't be a problem.
Sandy: He complained
Barbara: He complained?
Sandy: And then we dropped our price to $50,000.
Sandy: He didn't pay.
Barbara: He didn't pay? So now what?
Sandy: So now we're dropping our price again to $10,000.
Barbara: Do I understand this correctly? I'm being marked down? What is this? The Bargain Basement?
Barbara: I've been kidnapped by K-Mart!
[Introducing his wife's toy poodle to his new Doberman pinscher]
Sam Stone: Muffy, meet Adolph. Adolph, EAT MUFFY!
Lt. Bender: [over a bullhorn] GIVE THE BAG TO BOZO, DROP THE GUN, AND PUT YOUR HANDS IN THE AIR.
Earl Mott: Who said that?
Lt. Walters: [to Lt. Bender] This could very well be the stupidest person on the face of the earth. Perhaps we should shoot him.
Lt. Bender: [over the bullhorn] IT'S THE POLICE DEPARTMENT.
Earl Mott: Really?
Lt. Bender: NO! WE'RE THE NATIONAL RIFLE ASSOCIATION!
Sandy: I don't think he loves her.
Ken Kessler: Well, let's face it, she's not Mother Teresa. Gandhi would have strangled her.
Sam Stone: Carol, did I ever tell you why I married her?
Carol: Yes, Sam, you told me many, many...
Sam Stone: Her father was very, very rich, and very, very sick. The doctors assured me he'd be dead any minute. There wasn't a second to lose! I rushed right out and married the boss's daughter. He was so sick, it was like the Angel of Death was sitting in the room with him, watching the clock. They pulled the plug on him... he wheezed and shook for about an hour... and then... he stabilized. The son-of-a-bitch just got older and sicker. And older, and sicker, and older and sicker...!
Waiter: More coffee, sir?
Sam Stone: No!
[the waiter leaves]
Sam Stone: I couldn't wait any longer, so I went out and made my own fortune. The old fart hung in there for 15 years. Finally died of natural causes. I want the rest of that money! His money, her money, it's my money!
Barbara: [to Ken about the dead Bedroom Killer] He said I looked like his mother. He hates his mother. So, if I look like his mother and you look like his father... this is what our son would look like. Pretty strong argument for birth control.
[about his wife and his plan to murder her]
Sam Stone: I had to live with that squealing, corpulent little toad all these years. God, I hate that woman. I - I - I hate the way she licks stamps! I hate her furniture! And I hate that little sound she makes when she sleeps.
[Sam imitates a whining nasal sound]
Sam Stone: Ugh! And that filthy little shitbag dog of hers... "Muffy"!
Carol: Aren't you scared?
Sam Stone: Scared? Hell, no. I'm looking FORWARD to it. My only regret, Carol, is that the plan isn't more violent.
Earl Mott: Did you just shoot at me?
Ken Kessler: No, you moron! There's police all over the place! Hundreds of them!
Earl Mott: Do I look that stupid?
Ken Kessler: Yes, you do!
Barbara: [seeing the Donald and Daisy Duck masks Ken and Sandy are wearing] Oh my God! I've been kidnapped by Huey and Dewey!
Ken Kessler: I mean, what the hell's the point of being a decent person when no-one is? Let's be assholes and get rich!
Carol: You get that tape of Sam Stone finishing off his wife, and that man will give us anything we want for the rest of his life!
Earl Mott: Yeah! Then we're off to Haiti.
Carol: Not Haiti, Tahiti!
Earl Mott: Oh... I knew that.
Sam Stone: [sees Muffy and Adolph with his tuxedo] My tux. My silk tux. Et tu, Adolf? Et tu?
[Ken's getaway car goes off the Santa Monica Pier and sinks]
1st Bystander: Someone help him, he'll drown!
2nd Bystander: The water's way too cold.
3rd Bystander: There's riptides out there.
4th Bystander: I seen sharks.
[the ransom cash floats to the surface]
3rd Bystander: Look there! That's money!
[Everyone jumps in the water]
Ken Kessler: She's in bad shape, Sam. We've been torturing her.
[He holds the phone to the stove, Sandy presses a tofu-burger, making a sizzling sound]
Sam Stone: Don't kill her! Don't kill her! I'll pay the ransom!
Ken Kessler: Good, because not only we heard about your legal troubles, we also just found out your wife is worth quite a bit more than ten thousand.
Sam Stone: What do you mean?
Ken Kessler: We just changed our minds since you really now want your wife back, so we've upped the ransom.
Sam Stone: To what?
Ken Kessler: We're up to two million dollars.
Sam Stone: TWO MILLION DOLLARS? Are you out of your fucking mind? Where'd you get an incredible figure like that?
Ken Kessler: Oh, you'd be surprised at the quality and quantity of information a lit cigarette can provide.
[Sandy presses again]
Ken Kessler: WHAT ELSE?
Sam Stone: [into phone] Shh! Shh! Shh!
Barbara: Gems! He's got rare gems in a safe...
Barbara: Oh Sam, forgive me!
Ken Kessler: WHAT KIND OF GEMS? HOW MANY?
Barbara: I don't know!
[Sam raises a fist as the sizzling comes again]
Barbara: AAAAH! AAAAH! AAAAAAAAAHHH!
Barbara: [stops Sandy] Four flawless one-carat diamonds!
Sam Stone: [puts phone to shoulder] The bitch blabbed!
Ken Kessler: [Barbara has just thrown a lamp at Ken making him drop a serving tray with food on it] Hey... no dinner for you then.
Barbara: [sarcastic] Aw gee whiz, that really sucks. I'm a real aficionado of death camp cuisine!
[the moment the gag is out of her mouth]
Barbara: YOU'VE FUCKED WITH THE WRONG PERSON! My husband does business with the Mafia! When they track you down, you, your entire family, everyone you ever KNEW will all get chainsaw enemas!
Sam Stone: [answering the phone] Hello? Debbie? Yeah, Debbie's here, who's this? Well, Ralph, uh, Debbie can't talk right now, my dick's in her mouth. How about if I have her call you back later when I'm done?
[hangs up and laughs]
Sam Stone: I love wrong numbers.
Ken Kessler: Sandy, it's over. Sam isn't going to pay the ransom, he couldn't care less. I'm no criminal. I can't even sell retail, and that's legal!
Carol: Either the chief is a complete moron and complete morons are rare...
[she looks up at Earl Mott, a "complete moron"]
Carol: Or he's playing games with me!
Earl Mott: [discovering that his fish are dead] Crockett and Tubbs... they're floatin'!
Barbara: [on the phone at Ken and Sandy's house] Help, operator, I've been kidnapped!
Barbara: [listens for a second] Well, how the hell do I know where I am?
Sam Stone: What's this phone call about?
Ken Kessler: We call to make you an offer. An offer you can't refuse.
Sam Stone: Low?
Ken Kessler: Yeah, $10,000.
Sam Stone: Fat chance!
Ken Kessler: Mr. Stone, this is no joke! We're desperate people! We...
Sam Stone: Time out! I believe this is a joke pal and you're it! The last time we spoke you said my wife would be in the morgue if I didn't pay. Well, I didn't pay and just today I was at the morgue and she wasn't there. You lied to me! You know what I think?
Ken Kessler: [beat] No.
Sam Stone: You got no nuts! What do I have to do? Put a gun in your hand, aim and pull your finger down you spineless wimp! I dare you to kill her!
[Sam hangs up]
Sam Stone: Now that oughta do it!
Sam Stone: A bad salesman will automatically drop his price. Bad salesmen make me sick.
[Later, Ken calls Sam, who says he doesn't have enough money for the ransom]
Ken Kessler: Well, what about... less?
Sam Stone: [covers the phone] You make me sick.
[Sam is on the phone to an attack-dog company]
Sam Stone: Yes, your attack dogs. Do they just attack people or can you get them to attack little dogs?
Sam Stone: Well, what if you starve them for a while?
[Detective Walters notices a puddle on the floor of the mansion and takes a taste. Sam quickly explains]
Sam Stone: It's the dog. She's not properly house-trained.
[the other policemen look disgusted]
Lt. Walters: No. It's sweet.
Sam Stone: The dog's a little diabetic.
[as bystanders jump off the Santa Monica Pier to grab the ransom money floating up]
Sam Stone: You can't do that! That's not your money! That's my money!
[grabs a nearby police officer]
Sam Stone: STOP 'EM!
[throws him off the pier and into the bay]
Sandy: No matter what I do, there's nothing I can say... she just tears into me! She hates me.
Ken Kessler: Sandy, you're her kidnapper. She's *supposed* to hate you.
Barbara: [whistles] Nice butt. That's what they'll say.
Ken Kessler: I beg your pardon?
Barbara: Nice butt. That's what they'll say on your first day, in the men's club.
Ken Kessler: The men's club?
Barbara: Mmm. The San Quentin Country Club. With a cute little rear end like that, you'll be the belle of the ball. Your dance card'll be filled every day. You'll be so popular, making all kinds of new, close friends. Big, ugly, hairy friends! Not that you'll ever see what they look like, 'cause you'll be facing the other way.
Ken Kessler: You're very good at this. You should write children's books.
Sandy: [about the kidnapping of Barbara] I feel terrible about this. Do you feel as guilty as I do?
Ken Kessler: Guilty? Are you kidding me? He takes our money, steals your idea, goes out and makes a million dollars and you feel guilty? I can't believe this! How many times have we been over this?
Sandy: Honey, not again...
Ken Kessler: [pulls out a People magazine with Sam Stone on the cover] Let me remind you of something. YOU are the spandex mini-skirt king. Not him! He is the spandex mini-skirt thief. He's the one that should feel guilty!
[turns to a page]
Ken Kessler: Look at this! Do you remember this? You cried for a week when you saw this. Look at the smile on that asshole!
Sandy: I know he stole it! But she didn't do anything.
Ken Kessler: She was his partner! Damn it, Sandy! Do you enjoy being stepped on? Do you? Because I don't, and I don't feel guilty.
[after a pause]
Ken Kessler: I take it back. I do feel guilty. I feel very guilty because I trusted a sleazeball named Sam Stone with our life savings on a handshake deal, and then just sat there and watched him take it all away from us!
[Sam, seeing the police will let Ken go, grabs the briefcase with the ransom money in it]
Sam Stone: [struggling with Ken] Gimme back my money!
Ken Kessler: What are you doing? Let go!
[to the police]
Ken Kessler: Tell him to let go! If he doesn't let go I give the order to kill Mrs. Stone!
Sam Stone: Go ahead! Give the order!
Ken Kessler: She's a dead woman if he doesn't!
Sam Stone: [pulls out a gun and points it at Ken's chin] All right... drop it! Punk!
[Ken lets go of the briefcase when a nearby payphone rings. Sam takes the briefcase and goes to answer the phone]
Sam Stone: [into the phone] Hello?
Lt. Bender: [into the phone] This is Lieutenant Bender. What are you doing?
Sam Stone: What does it look like? I'm taking back my money! You've got your man. The rest is your problem!
Lt. Bender: Mr. Stone, you may be guilty of obstruction of justice, aiding and abetting a known felon, accomplished a kidnapping and possibly murder. If you really want to clear yourself, my advice to you is to drop your gun and give him back the bag. We have 140 police officers, 75 police cars and two helicopters. I promise you, he WON'T get away!
Barbara: [on the phone with Sam] Do you have it all? 2.2 million dollars in unmarked, non-sequential bills?
Barbara: You miserable, scum-sucking pig!
Barbara: Oh, honey, I'm so sorry! They made me say that.
Sam Stone: Yeah, it's all here.
Barbara: And you have it all in a briefcase?
Barbara: You scumbag, you low-life motherfucker!
Barbara: Oh, dear. They made me say that too!
[Barbara has been kidnaped]
Barbara: My husband worships the ground I walk on! When he hears about this, he will *explode*!
[Meanwhile, Sam Stone pops a champagne cork with glee]
Sam Stone: Bye-bye, Barbara!
Ken Kessler: [watching TV] It's on every goddamn channel! What did he do? Hire a publicist?
Policeman: Sam Stone, you're under arrest.
Sam Stone: For mixing cotton with silk?
Ken Kessler: Wouldn't it be better if we were to strike at the core of Sam's being? His reason for living?
Sandy: Well, what would that be?
Barbara: HIS TESTICLES!
Barbara: It could mean the difference between life... and the chair!
[makes electrocution sound]
Barbara: Or the gas chamber.
[makes hissing and gasping sounds]
Barbara: Sometimes it's the firing squad. They miss *all* the major arteries... BANG!
[acts like she's been shot]
Barbara: And you don't die right away, you just lie there bleeding... and bleeding... and *bleeding*...
Sam Stone: I'm not asking you to screw the dog, Carol. It's for me!
[trying to sell a new stereo system to a teenage couple... before he realizes they're expecting a baby]
Ken Kessler: Check it out, my man! This is the Dominator X-10. Thirty inches of thigh-slapping, blood-pumping, nuclear brain damage!
Heavy Metal Kid: Bitchin'! Hey, what's it fucking cost?
Ken Kessler: That's the bitchin' part about it! It don't matter! If you can't afford it, FUCKING FINANCE IT!
[turns it on]
Ken Kessler: So what if it's as big as a Subaru and costs as much? You'll never have to trade this in! This is gonna be with you for the rest of your life! And when you die, they can BURY you in it!
Barbara: [about the basement she is being held in] Jeeeeeesus CHRIST! IT SMELLS LIKE A TOILET IN HERE!
[on finding out that Sam has a mistress and was glad she was kidnapped]
Barbara: I've got it, I tell you, I've got it! Okay, Sam arrives at noon on a motorcycle, wearing shorts! No shoes, no shirt, nothing... maybe we'll just put him in a jock strap! Then he has to drive all over town. Sam burns really easily, he'll be bright red in no time!
Ken Kessler: I can't believe this is happening...
Barbara: Then he has to cover himself with honey, and go to a bee farm! We'll make him dance around, so the bees go absolutely nuts!
Ken Kessler: [to Sandy, who looks disturbed] I don't think she really means it...
Barbara: Then we all watch, while they sting him to death! YEAH!
[she makes kicking and punching motions]
Ken Kessler: Barbara, don't we want something that'll last, something that'll keep stinging him for the rest of his life?
Sandy: My God, he must have been seeing this woman for years...
Barbara: CASTRATE HIM! I want to castrate him!
[she mimes cutting something off with scissors, then tossing it over her shoulder]
Sam Stone: [answers phone] Hello?
Ken Kessler: [voice] Mr. Stone, listen very carefully. We have kidnapped your wife. We have no qualms about killing her and we'll do so at the slightest provocation. Do you understand?
Sam Stone: Who the hell is this? Is this some kind of a joke?
Ken Kessler: [voice] I have no patience for stupid questions, Mr. Stone, and I don't like repeating myself! Do you understand?
Sam Stone: [face lights up] All right. I'm sorry, please continue.
Ken Kessler: [voice] You are to obtain a new, black, American Tourister briefcase, Model Number 8-1-0-4. Do you understand?
Sam Stone: Yes.
Ken Kessler: [voice] In it, you will place $500,000 in unmarked, non-sequentially numbered $100 bills. Do you understand?
Sam Stone: Sure.
[as the conversation goes on, a smile appears on Sam's face, and gets wider and wider... ]
Ken Kessler: [voice] Monday morning at 11:00 a.m., you will proceed with case in hand to Hope Street Plaza, and wait for a phone to ring. You will receive further instructions then. Do you understand?
Sam Stone: Yes, I do.
Ken Kessler: [voice] You will be watched at all phases of execution. If you fail to appear at the designated time, or if any phase is not carried out to our complete satisfaction, it will be considered an infraction of the rules, and your wife will be killed. Do you understand?
Sam Stone: I believe so.
Ken Kessler: [voice] If you notify the police, your wife will be killed. If you notify the media, she will be killed. If you deviate from our instructions in any way whatsoever, she will be killed. Do you understand?
[Sam's grin is about to split his face open]
Sam Stone: Perfectly.
[Cut to later, outside the Stone mansion, as fleets of police cars and news vans pull up!]
Ken Kessler: We've got to be ruthless. Think ruthless.
Sandy: What if I can't think ruthless?
Ken Kessler: You've got to. It's good for you. It makes you strong. I mean, what the hell's the sense of being a decent person when nobody else is?
Sam Stone: Hello?
Ken Kessler: All right, Mr. Stone. We came very close to killing your wife. But she begged us, repeatedly, for just one more chance. So in the spirit of compassion and mercy, we decided not to kill her just yet.
Sam Stone: "Compassion and mercy?" What the hell's going on over there? I thought you people were ruthless!
Ken Kessler: We are, Mr. Stone!
[Ken is horrified to hear that Sandy has let Barbara go]
Sandy: Kenny, she really, truly loves us now! She can be trusted, she's changed!
Ken Kessler: Changed? What did you do, perform an exorcism?
Sandy: Kenny, she lost nearly twenty pounds!
[He stares at her, uncomprehending]
Sandy: Well, you should have been here. It was a very special moment.
[Suddenly someone pounds on the front door. Both Ken and Sandy look at each other with dread]
Ken Kessler: I'm surprised they knocked.
[while Sandy bolts for the back door, Ken opens the front door to a police officer with a "Wanted" flyer]
Cop with Killer Picture: Good afternoon. I was wondering if you've seen this man. He was sighted in the area a few weeks ago, and again earlier today. He's psychotic, extremely dangerous, and extremely violent. He's killed half a dozen people...
Sandy: [off-screen, panicked after seeing the cop at the door] Oh no, oh no... I've gotta get out of here!
Ken Kessler: [forcing a smile] My wife... she's late for work.
[glances at the flyer]
Ken Kessler: Doesn't look familiar.
Cop with Killer Picture: [gives him the flyer] Well, keep this and give us a call at that number if you do see him. And under no conditions should you try to subdue him yourself. Like I said, he's extremely violent.
Ken Kessler: He looks it. Thank you very much, Officer!
[the officer smiles and leaves. Ken waits until he is out of sight, then bolts for the back yard, where Sandy is trying to climb over the fence]
Ken Kessler: [whispering] Sandy! It's okay, it's okay! They're looking for somebody else.