You Know, I'm a Fearless Man - The Right Stuff quote

 I love this exchange from The Right Stuff (1984) and don't want to forget about it. There's an interesting dynamic between Glennis, the pilot's wife, and her husband Chuck in this scene. Chuck (portrayed by Sam Shepard) is the best and the bravest, but sort of stagnating as far as ambition and becoming complacent. Glennis seems to have angst about leading a low-key future, and suffers emotional duress knowing any test flight could be his last.

Sure, she should give the man a break like he did to the sound barrier. But a man as extreme as he is/was probably attracts, and needs, an equally up-to-speed counterpart. I've got to wonder what the screenplay's trying to hint at: the psychotic ambition required to be a certified, validated man? Or, maybe, a life not pushing the boundaries of mortality ain't quite living? It could just mean to say that any second you're not living life, it's passing you by.


It's no surprise not far later in the movie Chuck flies NF-104, 100,000 feet off the earth, where apparently the daytime sky tears away and you begin to see space. That's how the movies puts it, anyway, in a touching scene.

. . .

Glennis Yeager:
I never could stand a man who was one of those "remember-whens." Those bitter guys that just sit around thinking about old times. If I ever see that happen... I'm going right out the front door. And you'll never catch me.

Chuck Yeager:
You know, I'm a fearless man, but I'm scared to death of you.

Glennis Yeager:
Oh, no, you're not.
But you ought to be.

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