The 10 Best Movies Almost Strictly Based on Dialogue

5. The Breakfast Club (1985), written and directed by John Hughes

The Breakfast Club (1985)

The best film in John Hughes career, “The Breakfast Club” is a classic from the 80s starring Molly Ringwald, Ally Sheedy, Emilio Estevez, Anthony Michael Hall and Judd Nelson as five teenagers who meet at Saturday detention at school. They are all very different from each other, but as they spend the day together, they start to notice having much more in common that they thought.

Consisting basically of what the teenagers were talking about that day – but with great setting and soundtrack – “The Breakfast Club” is a youth-defining film about one of the most magical and most complicated periods of life: being a teenager.

Being without a doubt an 80’s classic, “The Breakfast Club” is a pop culture icon with humanistic themes and amazing dialogue and characters that can be understood by anyone who has experienced teenagehood.


4. My Night At Maud’s (1969), written and directed by Eric Rohmer

my night at mauds

This list will not be complete without the films from one of the greatest auteurs of The French New Wave, Eric Rohmer. Rohmer’s films are famous for their beautiful scenery, relaxing atmosphere and philosophical dialogues. Literally any of his films could be featured here, but we carefully choose My Night At Maud’s, the third part of his so called “Six Moral Tales” and probably his most profound.

The story takes place at one Christmas night at, of course, Maud’s place. A conversations happens between four single person, two men and two women. One man and one woman are Catholics, while the other man and woman are atheists. They talk about love, philosophy (most of them are references to Blaise Pascal) and ethics during one long night.

This is an interesting film because you can witness not only their thought-provoking conversations, but also how their discussions influence their own morals and actions when dealing with relationships. A true wonder of both great screenwriting and filmmaking.


3. Locke (2013), written and directed by Steven Knight

Starring Tom Hardy as Ivan Locke, a construction manager who, while leaving the construction site of a big project he is handling, receives a message that makes him drive two hours to London, “Locke” is a movie that explores the most of its lead character. From that message on we got a movie that takes place entirely inside the car with Locke speaking on the phone to many people, including work, family, and a mysterious woman.

This amazingly shot film is strong especially because of this concept. It would be a normal story if it was shot in another way. With phone call after phone call, we learn the reasons why Locke is traveling and the implications of his past mistakes on his work and on the people he loves.

With one of the best performances in Hardy’s career and amazingly written by Steven Knight, “Locke” is further proof that you don’t need a gigantic budget to make an amazing film, but with the right setting and a well-written story, you can make a brilliant film with just a man in his car talking on the phone.


2. My Dinner with Andre (1981), written by Andre Gregory and Wallace Shawn and directed by Louis Malle


Two guys and one dinner table. Starring Wallace Shawn as Wally Shawn and Andre Gregory as Andre Gregory, “My Dinner with Andre” follows a dinner between these two acquaintances on one night in Manhattan.

Andre Gregory, a theater director, talks about his many spiritual experiences and his travels around the globe, while Shawn notices how differently they look at the world. This philosophical and oratorical ‘battle’ between them delivers many great arguments.

With great performances from Gregory and Shawn that hold together this film based on their discussions, “My Dinner with Andre” is an amazing movie to understand how many things in film can work just by being told in a conversation, and how far a picture can go in deepening the understanding of two characters by making them talk to each other nonstop.


1. Before Sunrise (1995), written by Richard Linklater & Kim Krizan and directed by Richard Linklater;
Before Sunset (2004), written by Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke & Kim Krizan and directed by Richard Linklater;
Before Midnight (2013), written by Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy & Ethan Hawke and directed by Richard Linklater;

This critically acclaimed trilogy that follows 20 years in the lives of Jesse (Ethan Hawke) and Céline (Julie Delpy), two people who met on a train in Europe and spent one night in Vienna, than met again in France nine years later and, in the last part of the trilogy, are facing the troubles of marriage, is definitely among the movies with the most amazing dialogue in history.

From their meeting in Vienna to the many arguments they have in Greece almost 20 years later, this film shows many of the most complex nuances that is being in a relationship. From the first night to the reencounter many years later (the dialogue scene in the cab in “Before Sunset” is superb), and finally as their marriage is in crisis mode and they’re simply trying to figure things out in the middle of the pressure from work and the pressure of taking care of a family.

Beautifully performed by Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke, with the many moving moments in their relationship that the audience is able to follow since the first night, Céline and Jesse deserve their names among the greatest couples in fiction.

Author bio: Vítor Guima is a filmmaker, writer and musician from São Paulo, Brazil. Every day he watches a movie, reads a few pages from a book, listens to an album and freaks out with the feeling of not having enough time to see everything. You can follow him on Instagram on @ovitorguima.