Is it safe? Good...how about now?
December 3, 2006 10:54 PM   Subscribe

Dramatically intoned, repeated uses of the phrase Is it safe? in movies...more inside.

So I was watching Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring last night, and early on Gandalf (after his investigatory trip) asks Bilbo "Is it safe?". Then I remembered being struck by that phrase's repetition in The Way of The Gun.

As a movie quote, it is of course best known from Marathon Man. Now I'm wondering whether it shows up in other movies in a similar way -- heavy, dramatic, enigmatic and/or repeated. (Bonus question: is its use in any particular movie a tribute, or is it just such a dramatically cool question?)

[Obviously this is Not an Urgent Question, it is to satisfy my curiosity and possibly, fates/time/inclination willing, for a pet project idea. Any leads appreciated.]
posted by cps to Society & Culture (14 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
The original scene is recreated (I guess that'd be a tribute) in Hot Shots.
posted by tkolar at 11:09 PM on December 3, 2006


First episode of Clerks The Animated Series
posted by Leon at 11:16 PM on December 3, 2006


I swear one of the gremlins says it in one of the Gremlins.
posted by fleacircus at 11:40 PM on December 3, 2006


What instantly popped into my head is not a movie but a song by the relatively obscure Toronto-based world jazz ensemble Rick Lazar and the Montuno Police, who were my favourite band for a while after they played a show at my high school. The song, which is called "Toof Ache", kind of bounces all around, really dissonant, over a mid-tempo hip hop funk beat. Then towards the middle it starts to get more frenzied, and after a long build, there is a sudden stop and complete silence. And then, spoken by the violin player, in a pretty creepy voice...
"Is it safe?"
And then the song kicks back in.
posted by PercussivePaul at 11:48 PM on December 3, 2006


Yeah, in Gremlins 2, when the goofy gremlin is about to drill into Billy's mouth at the dentist's office.
posted by daninnj at 11:50 PM on December 3, 2006


Similar dialogue from "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" (in the book and the original movie, almost certainly the new one as well):

"Is he ... safe?"
"Safe? No! But he's good."
posted by spaceman_spiff at 12:51 AM on December 4, 2006


Marathon man
posted by mitocan at 2:57 AM on December 4, 2006


As mitocan said, this hast to be a tribute to Marathon Man -- when Dustin Hoffman is trapped in the basement with erstwhile dentist and current Nazi Laurence Olivier. Olivier drills Hoffman's teeth without anesthetic while repeatedly asking him "Is it safe?" (regarding treasure that Hoffman knows nothing about)
posted by mdiskin at 6:56 AM on December 4, 2006


Actually, I think Olivier says "Is it secret? Is it safe?" over and over again.
posted by mdiskin at 6:57 AM on December 4, 2006


Skinny Puppy samples the Marathon Man line in the song Assimilate.
posted by Kellydamnit at 7:41 AM on December 4, 2006


As a movie quote, it is of course best known from Marathon Man. Now I'm wondering whether it shows up in other movies in a similar way

Do you mean, movies made before "Marathon Man"?
posted by Rash at 8:50 AM on December 4, 2006


Thanks for all the answers so far.

Rash, good question. If it shows up before that would be cool too.
posted by cps at 2:56 PM on December 4, 2006


It's in Gremlins 2, just for the record.
posted by AmbroseChapel at 5:59 PM on December 4, 2006


I understand it's in Gremlins 2 and also in Marathon Man.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 10:05 PM on December 4, 2006


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