Quotes from the Movie The Lost Weekend

I want to be alone for a couple of hours to kind of assemble myself. Is that such an extraordinary thing to want?

Don Birnam

I didn't know it was there. Even if I had, I wouldn't have touched it. Do you think I wanted you out of the apartment because of the bottle? I resent that like the devil. If there's one more word of discussion, I don't leave on your blasted weekend.

Don Birnam

You know what brand, Mr. Brophy. The cheapest. None of that twelve year old aged in wood - not for me.

Don Birnam

Don't wipe it away, Nat. Let me have my little vicious circle. You know, the circle is the perfect geometric figure. No end, no beginning.

Don Birnam

What you don't understand, all of you, is that I've got to know it's around. That I can have it if I need it. I can't be cut off completely. That's the devil. That's what drives you crazy.

Don Birnam

Come on, Nat. Join me - one little jigger of dreams, huh?

Don Birnam

It shrinks my liver, doesn't it, Nat? It pickles my kidneys, yes. But what does it do to my mind? It tosses the sandbags overboard so the balloon can soar. Suddenly, I'm above the ordinary. I'm competent, supremely competent. I'm walking a tightrope over Niagara Falls. I'm one of the great ones. I'm Michelangelo, molding the beard of Moses. I'm Van Gogh, painting pure sunlight. I'm Horowitz, playing the Emperor Concerto. I'm John Barrymore before the movies got him by the throat. I'm Jesse James and his two brothers - all three of 'em. I'm W. Shakespeare. And out there it's not Third Avenue any longer - it's the Nile, Nat, the Nile - and down it moves the barge of Cleopatra. Come here...

Don Birnam

That's my novel, Nat...I was to start writing it out in the country. Morbid stuff. Nothing for the Book-of-the-Month Club. A horror story! Confessions of a booze addict. The log book of an alcoholic...You know what I'm gonna call my novel? The Bottle. That's all, very simply, The Bottle. I've got it all here in my mind. Let me tell you the first chapter. It all starts one wet afternoon about three years ago. There was a matinee of La Traviata at the Metropolitan...

Don Birnam

That's what's gonna be so hard to write. Love is the hardest thing in the world to write about. It's so simple. You've gotta catch it through details, like the early morning sunlight hitting the gray tin of the rose garden in front of her house, the ringing of a telephone that sounds like Beethoven's Pastorale, a letter scribbled on her office stationary that you carry around in your pocket because it smells like all the lilacs in Ohio....He thinks he's cured. If he could only get a job now, they could be married and that's that. But it's not, Nat, not quite. Because one day, one terrible day...you see, this girl's been writing to her people in Toledo. They want to meet the young man. So they come to New York. They stay at the Hotel Manhattan. Their very first day, she's to introduce him to her parents, one o'clock, in the lobby of the hotel...

Don Birnam

I couldn't face it...I couldn't face 'em, Wick, and all the questions they'd ask. I just couldn't do it, not cold. I had to have a drink first, just one - only the one didn't do anything to me.

Don Birnam

But then there are the ones who can't take it and can't leave it either. What I'm trying to say is, I'm not a drinker - I'm a drunk. They ought to put me away once.

Don Birnam

That was three years ago, Nat. That's a long time to keep fighting, to keep believing. She knows she's clutching a razor blade but she won't let go. Three years of it. I'm gonna do it now. It's all there, you heard it...That's why I didn't go away on that weekend, see, so I can be all alone up there and sit down at my typewriter. This time, I'm gonna do it, Nat! I'm gonna do it!...I'm going home. This time, I've got it. I'm gonna write.

Don Birnam

Stop it, Helen, stop it, stop it. I'm all right. I just can't talk. Please stop it!

Don Birnam

Come on, I need that liquor. I want it and I'm gonna get it. Do you understand? I'm gonna walk out of here with that quart of rye one way of another.

Don Birnam

I'm gonna put this whole weekend down, minute by minute...The way I stood in there packing my suitcase, only my mind wasn't on the suitcase, and it wasn't on the weekend. Nor was it on the shirts I was putting in the suitcase either. My mind was hanging outside the window. It was suspended just about eighteen inches below. And out there in that great big concrete jungle, I wonder how many others that are like me. Poor bedeviled guys on fire with thirst. Such comical figures to the rest of the world as they stagger blindly towards another binge, another bender, another spree.

Don Birnam

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