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The 30 Wisest Movie Mentors

Rufus (Bill & Teds Excellent Adventure)

The Student: Rock star amateurs and future saviours of the galaxy Bill S. Preston, Esq and Ted ‘Theodore’ Logan.

Key Lessons: That if you work hard at your dreams, you can change the world. And, in the sequel, that rudimentary guitar skills are needed to revolutionise inter-planetary relations through rock.

Wisest Words:
“Be excellent to each other.”

Auguste Gusteau (Ratatouille)

The Student: Remy the gastronomically superior rat, in whose imagination the ghostly remnant of Auguste exists.

Key Lessons: The typical stuff about hope and not giving up, but most of all about the accessibility and beauty of cuisine.

Wisest Words: “Good food is like music you can taste, color you can smell. There is excellence all around you. You need only to be aware to stop and savor it.”

Father Merrin (The Exorcist)

The Student: The younger priest, Father Damien Karras.

Key Lessons:
That demons are real, and appear in the world to convince us God cannot love us. These demons must be faced with faith and strength. And that priests with Scandie accentes sound way cool.

Wisest Words:
“The demon is a liar. He will lie to confuse us. But he will also mix lies with the truth to attack us. The attack is psychological, Damien, and powerful. So don't listen to him. Remember that - do not listen.”

Splinter (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)

The Student: The Ninja Turtles – Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael and Michaelangelo.

Key Lessons:
That true power comes from within, and that we are always greater as a group than as individuals. And, of course, that’s rats can do mean kung fu.

Wisest Words: “Tonight you have learned the final and greatest truth of the Ninja: that ultimate mastering comes not from the body, but from the mind. Together, there is nothing your four minds cannot accomplish.”

Professor Charles Xavier (X-Men)

The Student: All of the X-Men, but especially Wolverine, Rogue, Cyclops and Jean Grey.

Key Lessons: That mutants must learn to control and understand their powers, and that mankind and mutants can live together peacefully.

Wisest Words:
“When an individual acquires great power, the use or misuse of that power is everything. Will it be used for the greater good? Or will it be used for personal or for destructive ends? Now this is a question we must all ask ourselves. Why? Because we are mutants.”

Mary Poppins (Mary Poppins)

The Student: Upper-middle class troublemakers Jane and Michael Banks.

Key Lessons:
A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down, singing aids the tidying process, and children are always easier to manage when you have powerful magic at your disposal.

Wisest Words:
“In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun. You find the fun, and - SNAP - the job's a game!”

Dumbledore (Harry Potter)

The Student: The Boy Who Lived, that bolt-headed saviour of children’s fiction, Harry Potter.

Key Lessons: The usual moral guardian stuff – truth, righteousness, a cheeky bit of rule-breaking – but Big D’s key lessons centre on Harry’s friends, and the importance of love.

Wisest Words: ” Dark and difficult times lie ahead. Soon we must all face the choice between what is right and what is easy.”

Whistler (Blade)

The Student: Day-walking half-vampire and undead-hunter Blade.

Key Lessons:
Mostly Whistler teaches Blade about swearing and how to use the arsenal of vamp-skewering weapons he’s hand-crafted. Occasionally there’s a bit of gruff family talk.

Wisest Words:
“Crosses don’t do squat.”

Pai Mei (Kill Bill Vol. 2)

The Student: Our heroine, the long-legged female assassin Beatrice Kiddo.

Key Lessons: Loads of racist stuff about the Japanese, and how to master the legendary Five Point Palm Exploding Heart Technique.

Wisest Words:
“Just like all Yankee women, all you are good at is ordering in restaurants... and spending a man's money!”

Fast Eddie Felson (The Color Of Money)

The Student: Tom Cruise’s slick but small-time pool shark, Vincent Lauria.

Key Lessons:
To play the long game instead of blowing a town with a slick showing on the first night, and that you can lose and still be a big winner.

Wisest Words:
“You gotta have two things to win. You gotta have brains and you gotta have balls. Now, you got too much of one and not enough of the other.”