Who Framed Roger Rabbit is a masterful piece of cinema that blends the insanity of Roger Rabbit (Charles Fleischer) and the hairy back of Bob Hoskins. The 1988 caper, directed by Robert Zemeckis, follows a grouchy detective (Hoskins) as he grumps his way around Toontown, the iconic home of every animated character you’ve ever met as a child, in his quest to acquit Roger of murder charges.
Robert Zemeckis and an incomparable team of animators created a world that seamlessly jumps from cartoon to reality, back and forth until nothing actually seems too farfetched. It’s a sight to behold, but it’s also a witty, biting film with a script that never gets the credit it deserves. With that in mind, here are some exceptional and highly quotable moments from Who Framed Roger Rabbit.
“I’m Not Bad, I’m just drawn that way” — Jessica Rabbit
Femme fatale Jessica Rabbit (Kathleen Turner), Roger’s wife, is first introduced in the film as she saunters across the stage in a smokey club and makes Valiant wonder if he’d ever have sex with a cartoon. Short answer: probably. But her iconic quip as he questions her in his office is what people remember most about Mrs. Rabbit, and makes Valiant really think about if she’s guilty.
“Drink the drink.” — Eddie Valiant
It’s not so much the line, it’s what follows Eddie’s gruff insistence that Roger chugs a glass of whiskey straight up. Roger’s about to get MURDERED in a bar full of people that don’t seem to understand what the word “intervene” means, and Eddie knows that Roger’s alcohol intolerance means that he’ll get out quick. Also, Roger’s a petulant child, and won’t drink it on his own, so there’s some true parental logic involved here.
“Remember me Eddie? When I killed your brother, I talked just like this!” — Judge Doom
The moment that plagued our nightmares: finding out that Christopher Lloyd — sorry, Judge Doom — was actually a toon. And not just any toon, but some sort of self-loathing hell beast with glowing red eyes who also happened to kill Eddie’s brother. The importance is in the delivery here. Pour out some dip, bros.
“This is the last time I work with someone with a speech impediment!” — Daffy Duck
It may seem a little obvious, but it still kills — the two ducks, Daffy and Donald, are doing their dueling piano routine and we find out that Daffy is an artiste and a perfectionist. His wacky hijinks have to be timed just right. And he cannot stand working with Donald any longer, because his professionalism and demeanor are just off-putting. Oh, also they both sound ridiculous.
“Nice booby trap.” — Eddie Valiant
Never touch a lady without her permission, and that goes doubly for weasels. Jessica’s going to lay down the law for any weasel who tries to grab a handful with a secret weapon up her sleeve. Or rather, down her top. Solidarity, sister.
“She was playing Patty Cake? Oh Jessica, please tell me it’s not true!” — Roger Rabbit
Poor, sad Roger. The most tragic thing he could ever think of is his dear wife cheating on him — playing Patty Cake with Marvin Acme (Stubby Kaye)! What a hussy. The evidence was all there; that’s how Eddie got involved in this whole caper in the first place. Roger’s painful, sorrowful sobbing at the reveal makes it all that much sadder. God knows what would happen if he had caught them jumping rope.
“Tell me Eddie, is that a rabbit in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?” — Dolores
Dolores (Joanna Cassidy) doesn’t get enough credit in this movie, but she gets to deliver some amazing innuendo-filled lines. And there’s plenty of innuendo in this film, made funnier when you realize Jessica loves Roger because he screws like a rabbit. Dolores’ quip kills, because anything works in this film when it annoys the hell out of Hoskins.
“Tell me, Roger. What do you call the middle of a song?” — Benny
“Oh, I don’t know” — Roger
The BRIIIIIIDGE! — Benny
A talking car is usually a gimmick, but Benny (Fleischer again), the tough as nails taxi cab, is one of the most well-rounded characters in this whole thing. The infamous chase scene in which Eddie and Roger break Benny out of a prison truck (yes, a car locked inside a truck; just suspend your disbelief for a while) to help them escape from vengeful weasels is full of throwaway snaps from the frantic passengers, but Benny’s takes the cake.
“Now Roger is his name, and laughter is his game. Come on you dope, untie his rope. And watch him go insane!” — Eddie Valiant
This isn’t so much a quote as the intro to the greatest song and dance ever captured on film. Screw Gene Kelly. Watching Hoskins tap his toes around a warehouse as carnival music plays for a fully cartoon audience is a joy to see. Especially when you realize he was probably alone filming this. It literally killed the weasels with laughter. More questions than answers here: do you think he did his own backflips? For the love of God, please be let that answer be yes.