A Beautiful Mind (film)

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A Beautiful Mind is a 2001 film about the life of John Forbes Nash, an asocial but brilliant mathematician who develops schizophrenia.

Directed by Ron Howard, screenplay by Akiva Goldsman, based on the book by Sylvia Nasar.

John Nash[edit]

  • There has to be a mathematical explanation for how bad your tie is.
  • Find a truly original idea. It is the only way I will ever distinguish myself. It is the only way I will ever…matter.
  • Classes will dull your mind, destroy the potential for authentic creativity.
  • I find you very attractive. Your aggressive moves towards me indicates that you feel the same way. However, ritual requires that we engage in a number of platonic activities before we have sex. I am proceeding with those activities when, in point of actual fact, all I really want to do is have intercourse with you as soon as possible. You going to slap me now?
  • There's no point in being nuts if you can't have a little fun.
  • [In his Nobel acceptance speech] I've always believed in numbers and the equations and logics that lead to reason. But after a lifetime of such pursuits, I ask: 'What truly is logic?' 'Who decides reason?' My quest has taken me through the physical, the metaphysical, the delusional…and back. And I have made the most important discovery of my career, the most important discovery of my life: It is only in the mysterious equations of love that any logic or reasons can be found. [Looking at Alicia] I'm only here tonight because of you. You're the only reason I am…you are all my reasons.
  • Perhaps it is good to have a beautiful mind, but an even greater gift is to discover a beautiful heart.


  • Helinger: Mathematicians won the war. Mathematicians broke the Japanese codes, and built the A-bomb. Mathematicians … like you. The stated goal of the Soviets is global Communism. In medicine or economics, in technology or space, battle lines are being drawn. To triumph, we need results. Publishable, applicable results. Now, who among you will be the next Morse? The next Einstein? Who among you will be the vanguard of democracy, freedom, and discovery? Today, we bequeath America's future into your able hands. Welcome to Princeton, gentlemen.
  • Dr. Rosen: Imagine if you suddenly learned that the people, the places, the moments most important to you were not gone, not dead, but worse, had never been. What kind of hell would that be?


[John has been in the library for two days]
Charles: You've been in here for two days.
John: You know Hansen's just published another paper? I can't even find a topic for my doctorate.
Charles: Well, on the bright side, you've invented window art.
John: [points] This is a group playing touch football. This is a cluster of pigeons fighting over bread crumbs. And this here is a woman who is chasing a man who stole her purse.
Charles: John, you watched a mugging. That's weird.
John: In competitive behavior, someone always loses.
Charles: Well, my niece knows that, John, and she's about this high.
John: See, if I derive an equilibrium where prevalence is a non-singular event where nobody loses, can you imagine the effect that would have on conflict scenarios, arm negotiations …
Charles: When did you last eat?
John: … currency exchange?
Charles: When did you last eat? You know, food.
John: You have no respect for cognitive reverie, you know that?
Charles: Yes. But pizza – now, pizza I have enormous respect for. And of course beer.
[He leaves]
John: [throws stuff down and follows] I have respect for beer. [shouts] I have respect for beer!

Dr. Rosen: [to Alicia] John has schizophrenia, people with this disease are often paranoid.

Hansen: Recall the lessons of Adam Smith, the father of modern economics. "In competition …"
Everybody: "… individual ambition serves the common good."
John: [after thinking] Adam Smith needs revision.
Hansen: What are you talking about?
John: Adam Smith said the best result comes from everyone in the group doing what's best for himself. Right? That's what he said, right?
Hansen: Right.
John: Incomplete. Incomplete, okay? Because the best result will come from everyone in the group doing what's best for himself … and the group.
Hansen: Nash, if this is some way for you to get the blonde on your own, you can go to hell.
John: Governing dynamics, gentlemen. Governing dynamics. Adam Smith...he was wrong.

[John bangs his head against the window pane, cutting his forehead]
Charles: Jesus Christ, John.
John: I can't fail. This is all I am.
Charles: Come on, let's go out.
John: I got to get something done.
Charles: John!
John: I can't keep staring into space.
Charles: John, that's enough!
John: Got to face the wall, follow their rules, read their books …
Charles: You want to do some damage, fine! But don't mess around!
John: … do their classes.
Charles: Come on! Go on, bust your head! Kill yourself. Don't do it. Don't mess around. Bust your head! Go on, bust that worthless head wide open!
John: Goddamn it, Charles! What the hell is your problem?!
Charles: It's not my problem. And it's not your problem. It's their problem. Your answer isn't face the wall. It's out there, where you've been working.

John: You knew Oppenheimer?
Parcher: His project was under my supervision.
John: Which project? … That project.
Parcher: It's not that simple.
John: Well, you ended the war.
Parcher: We incinerated over a hundred thousand people.
John: Well, great deeds come at great costs.
Parcher: Your conviction, as it turns out, is a luxury of those sitting on the sidelines, Mr. Nash.

Alicia: How big is the universe?
John: Infinite.
Alicia: How do you know?
John: I know because all the data indicates it's infinite.
Alicia: But it hasn't been proven yet.
John: No.
Alicia: You haven't seen it.
John: No.
Alicia: How do you know for sure?
John: I don't, I just believe it.
Alicia: It's the same with love, I guess.

John: Have you met Harvey? [points to the empty seat Sol is about to sit in]
Sol: [startled, and worried] John, there's no...
John: Relax, it's okay. There's no point being nuts if you can't have a little fun.
Sol: Jesus Christ. I should have known...

Dr. Rosen: You can't reason your way out of this!
John: Why not? Why can't I?
Dr. Rosen: Because your mind is where your problem is in the first place!

Parcher: Is this what you are, soldier? Some useless ghoul? The local madman?
John: I'm not a soldier.
Parcher: You're gonna end up in a cell! Old, worthless, discarded.
John: There's no mission.
Parcher: And while you rock and drool, the world will burn to ashes!
John: You are not real! You are not real!
Parcher: You're still talking to me, soldier!
John: There's no mission! I'm not a soldier!
[Hansen rushes to John's side]
Hansen: John? John? John, John, John, John. Hey, hey, hey. John, John! It's okay. I just heard what happened, I'm sorry. John--
John: I'm not a soldier.
Hansen: John. Hey, Nash. Nash, hey. Hey, you're all right.
[John walks off]
Parcher: Ladies and gentlemen, the great John Nash!



  • The Only Thing Greater Than the Power of the Mind Is the Courage of the Heart
  • He Saw the World in a Way No One Could Have Imagined.
  • I need to believe that something extraordinary is possible …
  • It is only in the mysterious equation of love that any logical reasons can be found.

External links[edit]

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