Do You Remember These 7 Famous Quotes From ‘Dr. Strangelove’?

Dr. Strangelove
Everett Collection

Director Stanley Kubrick‘s dark comedy Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb was released 60 years ago on Jan. 29, 1964.

The Cold War satire starred Peter Sellers in three roles as U.S. President Merkin Muffley, British RAF Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake and the mysterious German scientist Dr. Strangelove. George C. Scott played gung-ho Gen. “Buck” Turgidson. Slim Pickens played U.S. Air Force B-52 pilot Maj. “King” Kong, and the film also featured James Earl Jones as bombardier Lt. Lothar Zogg.

In the movie, paranoid Brig. Gen. Jack D. Ripper (Sterling Hayden), goes “a little funny” and uses the 843rd Bomb Wing’s B-52 bombers to launch an unauthorized preemptive nuclear strike on the Soviet Union. What follows is a comedy of errors as the U.S. president and his advisers try to crack Gen. Ripper’s code and stop the aircraft from reaching their targets and setting off the Soviets’ new doomsday machine.

In celebration of Dr. Strangelove’s anniversary and our continued Purity of Essence 60 years later, we pick seven of our favorite quotes from the movie:

7. “[Clemenceau] said war was too important to be left to the generals. When he said that, 50 years ago, he might have been right. But today, war is too important to be left to politicians. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought. I can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration, Communist indoctrination, Communist subversion and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids.” — Gen. Ripper

6. “I don’t think they wanted me to talk really. I don’t think they wanted me to say anything. It was just their way of having a bit of fun, the swines. Strange thing is they make such bloody good cameras.” — Capt. Mandrake, on being tortured by the Japanese in World War II

5. “Survival kit contents check. In them you’ll find: one 45 caliber automatic; two boxes of ammunition; four days’ concentrated emergency rations; one drug issue containing antibiotics, morphine, vitamin pills, pep pills, sleeping pills, tranquilizer pills; one miniature combination Russian phrase book and Bible; $100 in rubles; $100 in gold; nine packs of chewing gum; one issue of prophylactics; three lipsticks; three pair of nylon stockings. Shoot, a fella’ could have a pretty good weekend in Vegas with all that stuff.” — Maj. Kong to his flight crew

4. “You’re sorrier than I am, but I am as sorry as well…I am as sorry as you are, Dmitri! Don’t say that you’re more sorry than I am, because I’m capable of being just as sorry as you are…So we’re both sorry, all right?” — President Muffley on the phone with Soviet Premier Dimitri Kissov

3. “Well, boys, we got three engines out, we got more holes in us than a horse trader’s mule, the radio is gone and we’re leaking fuel and if we was flying any lower why we’d need sleigh bells on this thing…but we got one little budge on them Rooskies. At this height why they might harpoon us but they dang sure ain’t gonna spot us on no radar screen!” — Maj. Kong to his flight crew

2. “There were those of us who fought against it, but in the end we could not keep up with the expense involved in the arms race, the space race, and the peace race. At the same time our people grumbled for more nylons and washing machines. Our doomsday scheme cost us just a small fraction of what we had been spending on defense in a single year. The deciding factor was when we learned that your country was working along similar lines, and we were afraid of a doomsday gap.” — Soviet Ambassador Alexi de Sadesky (Peter Bull)

1. “Gentlemen! You can’t fight in here! This is the war room!” — President Muffley