The Quiet Man

1952 film directed by John Ford

The Quiet Man is a 1952 American film about an expatriate Irishman and boxing champion who returns from the United States to Ireland to reclaim his family's farm and winds up falling in love with and marrying a local woman.

Directed by John Ford. Written by Maurice Walsh, Frank S. Nugent, and Richard Llewellyn.

Father Peter Lonergan

  • Now, I'll begin at the beginnin'. A fine soft day in the spring it was when the train pulled into Castletown three hours late as usual, and himself got off. He didn't have the look of an American tourist at all about him. Not a camera on him. And what was worse, not even a fishing rod.
  • Ah, yes. I knew your people, Sean. Your grandfather, he died in Australia, in a penal colony. And your father, he was a good man too.

Michaleen Oge Flynn

  • Is this a courting or a donnybrook? Have the good manners not to hit the man until he's your husband and entitled to hit you back.


Sean: [about a cottage] Do you think she'd sell it?
Michaeleen: I doubt it.
Sean: Don't bet on it, 'cause I'm buyin' it.
Michaeleen: Now why would a, why would a Yankee from Pittsburgh want to buy it?
Sean: I'll tell you why Michaeleen Oge Flynn, young small Michael Flynn who used to wipe my runny nose when I was a kid. Because I'm Sean Thornton and I was born in that little cottage over there. And I've come home, and home I'm gonna stay. Now does that answer your questions once and for all, you nosy little man?
Michaeleen: Seanin Thornton! And look at you now...What do they feed you, all you men who are in Pittsburgh?
Sean: Steel, Michaleen. Steel and pig iron furnaces so hot a man forgets his fear of hell. When you're hard enough, tough enough, other things, other things Michaeleen.

Sean: [after first seeing Mary Kate, tending sheep in a meadow] Hey, is that real? She couldn't be.
Michaeleen: Oh nonsense, man. It's only a mirage brought on by your terrible thirst.

Mary Kate: '[after the widow sells her cottage to Sean instead of Will] Good for Widow Tillane...After all, he's [Sean Thornton] got more right to that land than you have.
Will: He'll regret it till his dying day, if he lives that long.

Sean: The point is, it's already done. I own the property now, and as long as we're gonna be neighbors...
Will: Neighbors? Oh, neighbors. NEVER! And if I so much as catch you putting your wet foot on my property...and oh, another thing, you keep away from my sister Mary Kate. She's not for the likes of you.
Sean: Where I come from, we don't talk about our women folk in saloons. You sort of make a habit of it.

Father Paul: Father Lonergan!
Father Lonergan: Shhh...
Father Paul: It's, it's a big fight in the town!
Father Lonergan: And there's a big fight in this fish right here.
Father Paul: I'd have put a stop to it, but you see...
Father Lonergan: You do that, lad. It's your duty.
Father Paul: But see now, it's Danahar and Sean Thornton!
Father Lonergan: Who?
Father Paul: Danahar and Sean Thornton!
Father Lonergan: Well why the devil didn't you tell me? [Quickly drops fishing rod and runs]
. . .
[The two priests arrive at the scene of the fight]
Father Paul: Father, shouldn't we put a stop to it now?
Father Lonergan: [Smiling, making fighting movements] Ah, we should lad, yes we should, it's our duty. Yes, it's our duty... [Smiles as a punch is heard]

[After surprising her in his cottage, Sean grabs her and kisses her]
Mary Kate: It's a bold one you are. And who gave you leave to be kissin' me?
Sean: So you can talk!
Mary Kate: Yes I can. I will, and I do. And it's more than talk you'll be gettin' if you step a step closer to me.
Sean: Don't worry. You've got a wallop!
Mary Kate: You'll get over it, I'm thinkin'.
Sean: Well, some things a man doesn't get over so easy.
Mary Kate: Like what supposin'?
Sean: Like the sight of a girl comin' through the fields with the sun on her hair. Kneeling in church with a face like a saint.
Mary Kate: Saint indeed!
Sean: And now comin' to a man's house to clean it for him.
Mary Kate: But that was just my way of bein' a good Christian act.
Sean: I know it was, Mary Kate Danaher. And it was nice of you.
Mary Kate: Not at all. [she moves to leave, but then turns back and kisses him]

Will: [in response to Sean's request for Mary Kate's hand in marriage] Get out! Why if he was the last man on the face of this earth, and my sister the last woman, I'd still say no. Hey Yank! I'll count three. And if you're not out of the house by then, I'll loose the dogs on ya.
Sean: If you say three, mister, you'll never hear the man count ten.

Mary Kate: I thank you anyway, Sean Thornton, for the asking.
Sean: You don't think this changes anything? It's what you say that counts, not him.
Michaeleen: Now Sean, you've gone too far. That's enough.
Sean: Say, what is this? We're gonna get married. Aren't we? [She turns away, dejected, and runs upstairs to her room] I don't get it.
Michaeleen: This is Ireland, Sean, not America. Without a brother's consent, she couldn't and wouldn't. I'm sorry for both of ya.

Will: What sort of a scoundrel is this Yank? One minute, he's at me sister, and the next it's herself.
Michaeleen: Well, blame no one but yourself. If you had saved me as your matchmaker, you and the widow would have been married long since.
Father Lonergan: True, Will, true.
Michaeleen: Mind you, I'm not saying it's too late yet.
Will: What do you mean?
Michaeleen: Why do you suppose the Widow Tillane has stood you off so long, huh? You're a fine looking man.
Will: I am.
Michaeleen: A rich propertied man!
Will: And well she knows it.
Michaeleen: What woman would come into the house with another woman in it? If you got rid of Mary Kate, the widow would have been in like a shot.
Will: No!
Michaeleen: Yes. You had your chance and you flubbed it. You refused Seanin Thornton and he reneged on ya. Now I doubt if he'd take your sister if you put a thousand pounds on her.
Will: Father Lonergan?
Father Lonergan: I can´t say it´s true, and I won´t say it´s not. But there's been talk.
Michaeleen: Oh, a lot of talk.
Will: A lot of talk, eh?
Michaeleen: Two women in the house and one of them a redhead.

Mary Kate: I have a fearful temper. You might as well know about it now instead of finding out about it later. We Danahers are a fighting people.
Sean: I can think of a lot of things I'd rather do to one of the Danahers - Miss Danaher.
Mary Kate: Shhh, Mr. Thornton. What will Mr. Flynn be thinking?

Sean: If anybody had told me six months ago that today I'd be in a graveyard in Innisfree with a girl like you that I'm just about to kiss, I'd have told 'em...
Mary Kate: Oh, but the kisses are a long way off yet.
Sean: Huh?
Mary Kate: Well, we just started a-courtin', and next month, we, we start the walkin'-out, and the month after that there'll be the threshin' parties, and the month after that...
Sean: Nope.
Mary Kate: Well, maybe we won't have to wait that month.
Sean: Yep.
Mary Kate: Or for the threshin' parties.
Sean: Nope.
Mary Kate: Or for the walkin'-out together.
Sean: No.
Mary Kate: And so much the worse for you, Sean Thornton. For I feel the same way about it myself.

Mary Kate: Ever since I was a little girl, I dreamed of having my own things about me. My spinnet over there, and a table here, and my own chairs to rest upon. And a dresser over there in that corner, and my own china and pewter shinin' about me. And now...
Sean: I didn't know you felt that way about it. Seems like a lot of fuss and grief over a little furniture and stuff. [They go outside]
Mary Kate: It is a pretty cottage, isn't it?
Sean: Yeah, I think so. [He moves to embrace her]
Mary Kate: [She pulls away] Don't touch me! You have no right!
Sean: Whaddya mean, no right?
Mary Kate: I'll wear your ring, I'll cook, and I'll wash, and I'll keep the land. But that is all. Until I've got my dowry safe about me, I'm no married woman. I'm the servant I've always been, without anything of my own!
Sean: That's ridiculous. You're my wife and...[She shuts the bottom half of the cottage's front door on him] What is this?
Mary Kate: Haven't I been tryin' to tell ya? - ...that until you have my dowry, you haven't got any bit of me - me, myself. I'll still be dreamin' amongst the things that are my own as if I had never met you. There's three hundred years of happy dreamin' in those things of mine and I want them. I want my dream. I'll have it and I know it. I'll say no other word to you.
Sean: All right. You'll have your dowry or dot or fortune or whatever you call it.
Mary Kate: Well, get it then.
She bolts the bedroom door behind her. He kicks the door open]
Sean: There'll be no locks or bolts between us Mary Kate except those in your own mercenary little heart.

Sean: Well, let him keep it.
Mary Kate: Keep my fortune?
Sean: Sure, you've got your tables and chairs about ya. What do we care about his money?
Mary Kate: My money!
Sean: Well, let him have it if it means that much to him....
Mary Kate: What manner of man is it that I have married?

Mary Kate: [abut Will] Hurry. Now is a good time to ask him. What! Go on, go on.
Sean: Ask him what?
Mary Kate: About my money. He can't say that he hasn't got it with him now.
Sean: Can't you get it through your head that I didn't marry you for your fortune? I don't give a hang about the money.
Mary Kate: But he does. And that's the whole point of it. Now will you go and ask him?!
Sean: No, why shame ourselves?
Mary Kate: Shame? The shame's on you, not on me. Oh, on me too if I've married a coward.
Sean: Is that what you think of me?
Mary Kate: Well, what else if you let him rob you out of my money?
Sean: 'Money!' I'm sick of the talk of it. Is that all you Danahers think about - money?

Sean: Maybe it's just one of those things in the scrapbook, but now when you carry it around in here...I didn't go in there to outbox him. I went in there to beat his brains out. To drive him into the canvas, to murder him. That's what I did. For what? The purse, a piece of the gate. Lousy money.
Reverend Playfair: And now money is behind your trouble with Danaher.
Sean: They think I'm afraid to fight him, all the friends I've made here, even my wife.
Reverend Playfair: But aren't you in a way?
Sean: Did you ever kill a man? Well I have, and all this talk about her big fortune. It's not that important.
Reverend Playfair: Perhaps it is to her. It must be strange to you from America, but it's an old, old custom here, and believe me, it's a good custom. The fortune means more to her than just the money.
Sean: To me it isn't, and worth fightin' for.
Reverend Playfair: Is your wife's love worth fightin' for?
Sean: I don't know. About all I know is I can't fight or won't fight unless I'm mad enough to kill, and if that means losin' her, I don't know. Maybe she doesn't love me enough.
Reverend Playfair: It's a difficult situation. But I think you'll find the answer in God's good time.

Will: You know, Yank, I've taken quite a likins to yas.
Sean: I'm getting real fond of you too.
Will: Yer widow, me sister, she coulda done a lot worse.


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