Raising Helen

2004 film by Garry Marshall

Raising Helen is a 2004 American comedy/drama film about a young woman who, after her sister and brother-in-law die in a car accident, becomes the guardian of their three children.

Directed by Garry Marshall. Written by Jack Amiel and Michael Begler.
Helen help us.

Pastor Dan Parker

  • I'm a sexy man of God, and I know it.

Henry Davis

  • [Helen lights a cigarette] It's going to be hard to take care of us if you're dead, too.


  • Landlord: I am only available between eight thirty and nine in the morning because I have a life.


[Helen starts to read Jenny's letter from Lindsay]
Helen Harris: Dear Jenny, If you're reading this, you know that I'm gone. And I asked Helen to be the guardian for the kids.
Lindsay Davis: [voiceover] And you're probably freaked about it. Yes, it's a surprising choice, considering that you are the most incredible mother I've ever known. If you find this letter odd, understand that my "always be prepared" Paul convinced me to write it now while our children are young. You must know from experience that when it comes to picking somebody else to raise your kids, no one seems right. No one is you. And so you choose someone who is most like you. Someone that will give the kids a taste of their real mom, the mom they lost and never really got to know. In so many ways, we are so much alike, that's why I chose Helen. Of course, she'll have lots of fights with the kids, yet she'll find a way to make up. I know sometimes she messes things up and makes big mistakes. On the other hand, she also makes big comebacks. Respect her Jenny. Give her a shot. We're family and I'm counting on you to keep everyone together. I know, Helen will certainly need some help learning how to be a mother to my kids, but I've got you for that. And who could be better? After all, you raised Helen, you'll teach her how to be a mom. Just like you taught her how to tie her shoes. I can still hear you telling her, "The bunny goes around the tree, and into the burrow...
Helen Harris: [watches Sarah tie her shoe] Pull tight.

Jenny Portman: [Being kicked by her unborn child] Ooh, ooh! Sweetie, what did mommy say about kicking while she's having a conversation? You need to wait until she's finished. Thank you very much.
Helen Harris: Did you just boss around the unborn?
Jenny Portman: It's never too early to learn good manners.

Jenny Portman: [as she examines the new apartment] I bet this is lead paint. Kids, no chewing on the window sills!
Helen Harris: Yeah, stick to the table legs like I taught you.

Helen Harris Audrey sweetie can you do me a favor and get me your wallet?
Audrey Davis: Why?
Audrey Davis: Could you just do it please?
[Audrey closes the closet door, gets the wallet in her backpack and shows it to Helen]
Helen Harris: Open it up and give me your fake I.D.
Audrey Davis: Why?
Helen Harris: Because I said so. That's why.
Audrey Davis: I'm not gonna give it to you, I am not a child!
Helen Harris: Yes, you are. You are a child, Audrey. And you have a right to a childhood and you should fight for it but if you won't, then I will. Now give me your I.D.
[Audrey gets fake I.D. out of her wallet and throws it at Helen]
Helen Harris: That was very adult of you.
Audrey Davis: [shouts] You tricked me! I thought you were on my side, but you're just like her. [points at Aunt Jenny] I hate you, do you hear me, I hate you!
Helen Harris: Well, I guess we are just gonna have to learn to live with that.

Audrey Davis: What is the matter with you? Don't you remember what it's like to be young?
Helen Harris: Of course I do... it was last Wednesday!

Audrey Davis: [after Jenny bursts into the motel room she is in with BZ] Aunt Jenny? What are you doing here? How did you find...
Jenny Portman: You have ten seconds to get your things together and get in the car. [to BZ who has just come out of the bathroom] Stay. Ten...
Audrey Davis: You're not my mother, if you haven't noticed.
Jenny Portman: No. But I love you very much, and I will be your worst nightmare if you don't get in that car now. Seven, six...
BZ: But we're not ready to go yet.
Jenny Portman: Oh, you're not ready? Well... Well, are you ready for this? [Jenny who is pregnant motions to her stomach] I don't think so. Are you ready to be a parent? I don't think so. Four, three...
Audrey Davis: Are you happy? You've just ruined my entire life.
Jenny Portman: Well, we'll fix it later. Two... [to BZ] You.
BZ: Chill out, Mommy.
Jenny Portman: Hey.
BZ: It's all good.
Jenny Portman: Don't you talk to me like that.
BZ: It's just a prom.
Jenny Portman: You listen to me. If you ever so much as blink in her direction again, I can and will bury you so far in the ground that the heat from the earth's core will incinerate your sorry ass. Do you understand me?
"'BZ'": Yes, ma'am.
Jenny Portman: By the way, you're not a bad person, but this is very bad behavior. Very bad behavior.

Pastor Dan Parker: Let's talk about some things you could do at home.
Helen Harris: You wanna know what I've been doing at home? I've been doing the best I can. Do you have any idea what this has done to my life?
Pastor Dan Parker: Hey, Helen, you have any idea what it's done to theirs?
Helen Harris: Hey, Pastor Dan? Mr. Self-righteous? I'm hanging on by a thread here. I lost my sister, my social life, my disposable income, my ability to fit into a size 2, and - this just in - my job. Pretty much the only two things that haven't disappeared are my nicotine fits and a few pounds that have recently taken up residence on my ass. So forgive me if I'm not too thrilled about being lectured, in Queens, about being a lousy legal guardian to three kids who maybe shouldn't have been given to me in the first place.

Helen Harris: See you at Vespers.
Pastor Dan Parker: Do you know what Vespers is?
Helen Harris: Some kind of scooter?
Pastor Dan Parker: Close enough.

Helen Harris: Pastor Dan just asked me out.
Audrey Davis: That is so weird.
Pastor Dan Parker: I can hear you. I'm still here. Go inside and do that.


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