The Secret of NIMH

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The Secret of NIMH is a 1982 animated film.

Directed by Don Bluth. Story adaptation by Don Bluth, Gary Goldman, John Pomeroy and Will Finn (from the book Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O'Brien
Right before your eyes and beyond your wildest dreams


  • [after lighting a candle] Jonathan Brisby was killed today while helping with the plan. It is four years since our departure from NIMH, and our world is changing. We cannot stay here much longer. [While writing words in a book] Jonathan was a dear friend. I am lost in knowing how to help his widow. She knows nothing of us or the plan. [Reloading ink for fountain pen] Perhaps best that I do nothing at present. [As he quickly writes signature] I shall miss him. [Holding and looking at amulet] Jonathan, wherever you are, your thoughts must comfort her tonight. She’ll be waiting, and you will not return. [as he puts away amulet in a case, closing it] Farewell, my friend.
  • [when he gives Mrs. Brisby the amulet, and again later when she discovers its power] Courage of the heart is very rare. The stone has a power when it’s there.


  • [repeated line] Excuse me. Pardon me.
  • Right. When you're right, you're right. And you're right.
  • If I had actually been near a cat, I'd be sneezing my brains out. [as Dragon, the Fitzgibbons' cat, comes closer] See, I'm allergic to—kaa... I'm allergic to—kay... I'm allergic to uh... hmm... hmm... hmm... Ah-choo!
  • [mesmerized by the amulet] A sparkley!

Auntie Shrew[edit]

  • Cast not pearls before swine, I always say, and that includes impudent piglets. Good day!
  • [responding to Mrs. Brisby] I came here to inform you that the frost is off the ground, and moving day is at hand. Prepare to move your very, very odd family. Good day!


  • Friends, tonight we journey to Thorn Valley. We will leave no tracks... no evidence that the rats of NIMH ever existed. Come...
  • Damn.
  • I'll have to come back for you later.


[inside a derelict tractor]
Mrs. Brisby: Mr. Ages, I know you don't like visitors, but this is an emergency. Please--
[Suddenly an explosion shatters the tractor, sending Mr. Ages down in a basket. Mrs. Brisby comes over to him as he nears the basket.]
Mr. Ages: Ma--[coughs] — Madam, that is an emergency!

Jeremy: [after splashing in water] Excuse me. Pardon me. [coughs]
Mrs. Brisby: You keep making all that noise and Dragon will hear you, if he hasn't already.
Jeremy: Wouldn't you sing too, I mean... [flapping his wings and drying himself off] if you felt... [laughs] if you felt the call of the wild?
Mrs. Brisby: I would- [lowers her voice] I would not, if I knew there was a cat nearby. [snapping string with teeth and setting Jeremy's claw free]
Jeremy: But she's out there somewhere, and when I find her, I'll feel it, way down in my wishbone. I-- What cat?

[Twice during the film]
Auntie Shrew: Brisby!
Teresa: Oh, Auntie Shrew.
Cynthia: Oh, Auntie.
Martin: Oh, no!

Teresa: [long after Auntie Shrew has gone] What are you doing here?
Jeremy: It's a good question, but don't ask. The legs. The legs! The legs! [collapses with a thud]
Cynthia: [mournfully, coming up to Jeremy's beak] Oh, the poor turkey fell down!

[As Nicodemus and Mrs. Brisby leave]
Sullivan: I don't get it.
Jenner: [snickering] With Nicodemus out of the way, what's to stop us from taking over?
Sullivan: Jenner, you can't kill Nicodemus.
Jenner: No taste for blood, huh? [flicks Sullivan on the nose] They've taken the animal out of you.
Sullivan: What if we're discovered?
Jenner: Listen. The Brisby house is a large cement block. In the moving, what if it should fall?
Sullivan: An accident?
Jenner: Of course! Cut the lines, and the weight of it will crush his bones.
Sullivan: It's risky.
Jenner: Once rid of Nicodemus, the plan will die. We can stay here as long as we like.
Sullivan: What about Justin?
Jenner: Leave him to me... [echoing] to me... to me...

Jenner: Hear me! The Thorn Valley plan is the aspiration of idiots and dreamers! We...! [Laughs] We were just talking about you.
Justin: That's refreshing, Jenner. Usually you're screaming about us.

Justin: It was you! You did it! You killed Nicodemus. That was no accident!
Jenner: Yes! I killed him. He wanted to destroy everything! I've learned this much: take what you can...when you can!
Justin: Then you've learned nothing!

Timmy: [from inside his room] Mommy, I'm tired of bed. I want to get up.
Mrs. Brisby: [responding from outside] Well, you're not getting up.


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