Eltern-Sein. Paar-Sein. Erziehungsdifferenzen. Beziehungsdifferenzen. Unterdrückter Ärger. Ausgedrückte Abscheu. Unerwartete Abgründe. Erwartete Klischee-Decouvrierung. Ironische Einblicke. Sich-selbst- entlarvende Ausdrücke.
MICHAEL (Reilly): What happened to your sense of humor?
PENELOPE (Foster): I don’t have a sense of humor. And I don’t want one.
MICHAEL: If you ask me, the couple is the most terrible ordeal God ever inflicted on us.
NANCY (Winslet) : Marvelous.
MICHAEL: The couple and the family.
MICHAEL: Take a step back and look at the situation we’re in. Children suck the life out of you and leave us old and empty. It’s the law of nature. You see these young couples, laughing all the way to the altar, and you think they don’t know. Poor fuckers don’t know a thing. They’re happy. Nobody briefs you in the beginning. This army buddy of mine is going to have a kid with his new girlfriend. I say to him, a kid at our age, what are you stupid? You got ten, fifteen good years left before you get cancer or have a stroke and you’re going to saddle yourself with a fucking kid?
NANCY: That’s not really what you think.
PENELOPE: Yes it is.
MICHAEL: Of course it’s what I think.
NANCY: My husband feels that anything to do with the house, the school, the backyard, is my domain.
ALAN (Waltz): I do not!
NANCY: You do so. And I can understand why. It’s all so excruciatingly boring. It’s excruciating.
PENELOPE: If it’s so excruciating, why do you have children in the first place?
MICHAEL: Maybe Zachary picks up on that lack of interest.
NANCY: What lack of interest?!
MICHAEL: You just said it yourself…
NANCY vomits violently. A sudden, catastrophic regurgitation and part of it gets on ALAN.
ALAN: We care in a hysterical way, Nancy. Not like heroic figures of a social movement. (to PENELOPE: I saw your friend Jane Fonda on TV the other day. Made me want to run out and buy a Ku Klux Klan poster.
PENELOPE: My friend Jane Fonda? What the hell does she have to do with this?!
ALAN: You’re the same breed. You’re the same kind of involved, problem-solver woman. Those are not the women we like, the women we like are sensual, crazy, shot full of hormones. The ones who want to show off how perceptive they are, the gatekeepers of the world, they’re a huge turnoff. Even poor Michael, your own husband is turned off …
MICHAEL: Don’t you speak for me!
PENELOPE: We don’t give a shit about what you like in a woman! Where do you get off spouting these opinions? You’re one man whose opinions we don’t give a shit about!
ALAN: She’s screaming. A quartermaster on a slave ship!
PENELOPE: What about her? She doesn’t scream? She didn’t just scream that your little asshole was right to beat up ours?
NANCY: He was right! At least our kid isn’t a little wimpy-ass faggot!