In the Middle · Life with Kids

Ten 80’s Movie Quotes I Use on My Kids

As is the case with most moms, sometimes I open my mouth, and my mother comes out. That’s fine. My mom had some good material. But she isn’t my only source for parenting one-liners. I also find myself frequently quoting 80’s movies to my kids. Here are a few cinematic gems that can often be heard around my house.

Any monkey business would be ill advised. This is good advice even if it does come from The Breakfast Club’s power-drunk principal. I know. Richard Vernon was an ass, but you know what? Those kids were jerks. And now that I’m a parent, I kind of see his point – but not because my heart has died.







The world is full of guys. Be a man. Don’t be a guy. Lloyd Dobbler took this advice to heart. I hope my boys will too.

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Stay golden, Pony Boy/Girl. When they get out of the car for school in the morning, when they are headed to a friend’s house for a sleep over, any time we are going to be apart for more than a few hours, I like to leave my children with these parting words. Neither they nor I really know what “stay golden” means, but it’s an inspiring phrase nonetheless.






I say. You do. No questions. Oh Mr. Miyagi, you are so wise. I should always remember to begin and end all of my instructions to my kids with this.


Does anyone know what this is? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? Who spilled this? Who tracked this in the house? Where did this dog come from? Any time I ask my kids a question that no one wants to answer, I become Ferris Bueller’s economics teacher.




Good night. Good work today. Sleep well. I’ll most likely kill you in the morning. Fortunately my children share my twisted sense of humor and my love for all things Princess Bride. I also describe the cell phone battery as “only mostly dead.” And I have been known to jump out from behind doors and around corners brandishing a wooden spoon or an empty wrapping paper tube shouting, “Hello! My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die!”


Say hello to my little friend! They aren’t familiar with Scar Face. I think my children just think this is the customary way one greets a frozen margarita. At least that’s how Mommy does it.



I think I’ll have a drink. Okay, even I can see that this one is a little obscure. It’s what Elliot Ness says in The Untouchables when asked what he will do if prohibition is ended. It’s also sometimes what Mommy says whilst making dinner.

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I am your father. Admittedly, this one is hard to pull off since, ya know, I am the mother. But that doesn’t stop me from doing my best Darth Vadar every chance I get. “Go get your father.” “Where is your father?” “Just ask your father.”

Yippee-ki-yay, little fella! I pretty much abhor all action films – with the exception of Die Hard. I can’t wait until all the kids are big enough for us to add it our list of annual Christmas movies – right up there with It’s a Wonderful Life and Miracle on 34th Street. Anyway, I realize that there is something lost in the editing of John McClane’s classic line, yet edit I must.


My kids are used to me randomly quoting lines from movies. They usually laugh but occasionally one of my hilarious film references is met with a blank stare – or worse, an eye roll. That’s not a problem. I just say what Duckie from Pretty in Pink would say…


So, what about you? What are your favorite movie quotes to use with you kiddos?





7 thoughts on “Ten 80’s Movie Quotes I Use on My Kids

  1. Brilliant! In our house, it’s the other way around – the kids use quotes on my husband and I. Most of the time we haven’t got a clue while they’re giggling away and carrying on with the dialogue, which is when we realise it’s from a film

    1. My kids quote a lot of movies too – usually ones we’ve watched over and over. They quote “My Cousin Vinnie”. They’ve only seen the edited version, but there are still some great lines.

  2. Those are great! I love that your kids totally get it too. I like to yell “Bring out ‘yer dead” from Monty Python. This applies so well in so many situations (laundry day, sheet washing day, when the hermit crab dies…) My kids totally don’t get it. 😉

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