20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954) Poster

James Mason: Captain Nemo



  • Captain Nemo : I am not what is called a civilized man, Professor. I have done with society for reasons that seem good to me. Therefore, I do not obey its laws.

  • Captain Nemo : Eat your pudding, Mr. Land.

    Ned Land : I ain't sure it's puddin'.

  • Captain Nemo : ...there is hope for the future. When the world is ready for a new and better life, all this will someday come to pass, in God's good time.

  • Captain Nemo : The natives over there are cannibals. They eat liars with the same enthusiasm as they eat honest men.

  • Captain Nemo : Think of it. On the surface there is hunger and fear. Men still exercise unjust laws. They fight, tear one another to pieces. A mere few feet beneath the waves their reign ceases, their evil drowns. Here on the ocean floor is the only independence. Here I am free! Imagine what would happen if they controlled machines such as this submarine boat. Far better that they think there's a monster and hunt me with harpoons.

  • Captain Nemo : Accept one of these cigars, professor.

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : Thank you.

    [He lights it] 

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : Delightful smoke. Different somehow. Havana?

    Captain Nemo : Seaweed.

  • [Observing the slave island] 

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : What is in those sacks they are carrying?

    Captain Nemo : Nitrates and phosphate for ammunition. The seeds of war. They're loading a full cargo of death. And when that ship takes it home the world will die a little more. I was once one of those pitiful wretches you see down there. Look at it again, professor, I don't want you to forget what you've seen here today.

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : I've seen enough.

    Captain Nemo : It's burned everlastingly in my memory.

  • Captain Nemo : [Noticing that Ned is eating with his knife]  There's a fork on your left, Mr. Land. Or aren't you accustomed to utensils?

    Ned Land : Oh, I'm indifferent to 'em.

  • Captain Nemo : Do you know the meaning of love, professor?

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : I believe I do.

    Captain Nemo : What you fail to understand is the power of hate. It can fill the heart as surely as love can.

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : I'm sorry for you. That's a bitter substitute.

  • Captain Nemo : Would you care to come along, Professor?

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : No, thank you. The last time I went ashore it was a prelude to murder.

  • [Ned cautiously samples his "pudding"] 

    Ned Land : What is it?

    Captain Nemo : It's my own recipe: sauté of unborn octopus.

  • Captain Nemo : I asked you to leave, Professor.

    Prof. Pierre Arronax : You also asked me ashore, to show me man's inhumanity to man. Why? To justify this? You are not only a murderer, you are a hypocrite! The proof lies out there!

    Captain Nemo : [anguished]  YOU CALL THAT MURDER? Well, I see murder, too, not written on those drowned faces out there, but on the faces of dead thousands! They are the assassins, the dealers in death; I am the avenger!

  • Captain Nemo : Mr. Land, you saved my life. Why?

    Ned Land : That's a good question. Well, there's only one thing a fella can do when he's made a mistake as big as this.

    Conseil : What?

    Ned Land : Get drunk!

  • Captain Nemo : You have a great deal to learn, Professor. Your book is brilliant... but it lacks scope. You have carried your work as far as terrestrial science permits. But the REAL story of the ocean depths begins where *you* left off. Wonders... that defy my powers of description... the secrets that are mine alone. Which I am willing to share with you.

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : At the cost of my friends' lives?

    Captain Nemo : I'm sorry... but you'll have to choose between them and me.

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : I cannot accept.

    Captain Nemo , Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : Professor, I regret your choice.

    [to first mate] 

    Captain Nemo , Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : Take him up. Secure for sea.

  • Captain Nemo : Ah, we're almost at the island of Crespo. All this was once an island. Although it is now sunk, it is nevertheless fertile. We do our hunting and farming here.

    Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator : Underwater?

    Captain Nemo : The sea supplies all my wants.

  • Conseil : Cannibals! Hundreds of cannibals! Captain, Captain, scores of boats!

    Ned Land : Captain, we're under attack!

    Captain Nemo : Naturally, since you invaded their privacy, they have every right to invade ours.

See also

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