Spy Game

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Spy Game is a 2001 film about a retiring CIA operator trying to rescue his former colleague from captivity in order to redeem himself.

Directed by: Tony Scott
Written by: Michael Frost Beckner
Starring: Robert Redford and Brad Pitt
"It's not how you play the game. It's how the game plays you."

Nathan Muir[edit]

  • Don't ever risk your life for an asset. If it comes down to you or them... send flowers.
  • If I'm walking into a shit storm I wanna know which way the wind's blowing.
  • Put away some money so you can die some place warm.
  • You're gonna make a beautiful corpse.
  • You go off the reservation, I will not come after you.
  • Hell of an ad for the Boy Scouts.
  • Technology gets better everyday. That's fine. But most of the time all you need is a stick of gum, a pocket knife and a smile.
  • She had worked both ends against the middle for so long, the middle decided to give up and go home.

Others[edit]

  • Tom Bishop: [to Nathan Muir] I'm done with the reasons, Nathan. I'm done with you. I'm not ending up like you.

Dialogue[edit]

Gladys Jennip: Feeling a little paranoid on our last day?
Nathan Muir: When did Noah build the ark, Gladys? Before the rain.

Tom Bishop: Happy?
Nathan Muir: Seventy-five casualties, an apartment block leveled, one dead terrorist? Yeah, happy.
Tom Bishop: We have some fucked up barometer for success, don't we?

Tom Bishop: [walking in on Nathan Muir shaving] My God, you're hideous. Why do you even bother?
Nathan Muir: I missed you, too.
Tom Bishop: You want flowers at 6am?
Nathan Muir: Flowers would be nice, but I'll settle for breakfast.
Tom Bishop: I got a good spot--I taught a guy to make migas.
Nathan Muir: A Mexican restaurant in Beirut? I'm impressed.

Tom Bishop: All right, so what else? What else do I need to know?
Nathan Muir: Put away some money so you can die someplace warm and don't ever touch it. Not for anyone, ever.
Tom Bishop: Okay, is that it?
Nathan Muir: Don't *ever* risk your life for an asset. If it comes down to you or them... send flowers.

Nathan Muir: See that building across the way?
Tom Bishop: Yeah.
Nathan Muir: Do you know anyone there?
Tom Bishop: No.
Nathan Muir: In five minutes I want to see you on the balcony.
Tom Bishop: What do...
Nathan Muir: Five minutes.
Tom Bishop: Can't we discuss it over coffee?
Nathan Muir: You just lost ten seconds.

Nathan Muir: I take it you didn't get to be a marksman putting food on your mama's table.
Tom Bishop: No, sir. We have a Safeway back home.
Nathan Muir: Where'd you learn to shoot?
Tom Bishop: Boy scouts, sir.
Nathan Muir: What, are you kidding me?
Tom Bishop: No, sir.

Tom Bishop: She's just someone I used to get to the camp.
Nathan Muir: She gonna be of any more use to us?
Tom Bishop: Not to us.

Dr. Ahmed: Is it hard? To take life?
Tom Bishop: [long pause] Yes.

Tom Bishop: Central Intelligence?
Nathan Muir: You'd be working for me. Mostly undercover.

Charles Harker: If these walls could talk, huh. All this history, I envy you.
Nathan Muir: Then bag your job, you can be just like me.
Charles Harker: No, really. The debt this country owes you guys.
Nathan Muir: Chuck, are you gonna dance with your hand on my ass all night or are you gonna make your move?

[Muir indicates a fat man sitting at a table reading a menu]
Nathan Muir: The man reading the menu. Threat?
Tom Bishop: Only to the hostess.

Charles Harker: We need the press on this like we need a third tit.
Nathan Muir: You using the other two?

Gladys Jennip: What is this about?
Nathan Muir: Money. Free trade, microchips, toaster ovens.
Gladys Jennip: And what does that have to do with you?
Nathan Muir: Nothing.

Charles Harker: So, sir, you and Muir came up together, right?
'Troy Fogler: Mmm-hmm.
Charles Harker: How well do you know him?
Troy Fogler: No one knows Nathan, not really.
Charles Harker: Do you trust him?
Troy Fogler: He's a man who got the job done.

Tom Bishop: So, when do I get my first assignment?
Nathan Muir: When I decide you're ready.

Nathan Muir: You just gave her four pieces of personal information for one dubious impersonal fact. 1) You're straight, 2)You're engaged, 3)Tomorrow's your girls birthday, and 4)You have terrible taste in women's clothing.
''Tom Bishop: Just trying to find out where she got that dress.
Nathan Muir: What if she were an asset? You told her four lies that now have to be true.

Tom Bishop: I thought spies drank martinis.
Nathan Muir: Scotch, never less than twelve years old.
Tom Bishop: Is that right? Agency rules?
Nathan Muir: My rules.

Robert Aiken: Patricia?
Nathan Muir: Yeah, my third wife.
Dr. William Byars: My God, how many wives have you had?
Nathan Muir: Four. You want to hear about them or Bishop?

Tom Bishop: Don't tell me that. Don't fucking tell me that. You didn't look in his eyes. Don't tell me that!
Nathan Muir: He was your asset, somebody you use for information.
Tom Bishop: Ah, Jesus Christ, you just... You don't just trade these people like they're baseball cards! It's not a fucking game!
Nathan Muir: Oh, yes it is. It's exactly what it is. And it's no kid's game either. This is a whole other game. And it's serious and it's dangerous. And it's not one you want to lose.
Tom Bishop: Nathan, we killed this man. We used him and we killed him. Okay then, you got to help me understand this one. You got... Nathan, what are we doing here? And don't give me some bullshit about the greater good.
Nathan Muir: That's exactly what it's about. Because what we do is unfortunately very, very necessary. And if you're not willing to sacrifice scum like Schmidt for those that want nothing more than their freedom, then you better take a long hard look at your chosen profession, my friend. Because it doesn't get any easier. You wanna walk? You wanna walk, walk.

Tom Bishop: Fuck your rules, Nathan.
Nathan Muir: Okay, but tonight they saved your life.

Nathan Muir: When I was a kid I used to spend summers on my uncle's farm. And he had this plow horse he used to work with everyday. He really loved that plow horse. One summer she came up lame. It could barely stand. The vet offered to put her down. You know what my uncle said?
Charles Harker: No, Muir, what did he say?
Nathan Muir: He said, "Why would I ask somebody else to kill a horse that belonged to me?"

Nathan Muir: We didn't know when the Doc was going to be giving the Shiek his physical, but it was our one and only opportunity to take him out. So I didn't have the usual time to butter him up. Which means we needed twice the sex with half the foreplay.

Tom Bishop: Happy Birthday, Nathan. Did you know Langley has seven different birth dates for you?
Nathan Muir: And they're all wrong.
Tom Bishop: I know, believe me, it wasn't easy. KGB, Mossad, also wrong. Fortunately I was well trained.

Anna Cathcart: The Scotch is older than she is...
Nathan Muir: Am I supposed to feel bad about that?

Troy Fogler: [re-enters the room looking faintly amused] There's been... an incident, in China.
Charles Harker: [looks confused for a moment, then shocked as he realises that Muir has played them all] Oh, Jesus Christ!

Cast[edit]

External links[edit]

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