- "James... Earn this... Earn it..."
- General Marshall reads a letter he keeps, written by an A. Lincoln to a Mrs. Bixby who lost 5 sons during the Civil War. Noting the tragedy that no mother should lose all of her sons, Marshall looks at his officers and says "We are going to find Private Ryan, and we are going to get him the hell out of there."
- At the end, when Ryan looks at his wife and asks her if he had deserved this, if he had lived a good life...
- When Mellish talks with Upham before the finale. It's hardly sappy, but at least someone explained FUBAR to the Na´ve Newcomer. Becomes harsher when Mellish is horrifically killed during the battle because Upham doesn't go to his aid.
- When Miller's team spend the night in a church. Reiben and Wade share stories about their mothers while Wade re-writes Caparzo's blood-stained letter to his father onto a clean sheet of paper. All the while, Friendly Sniper Private Jackson is curled up and snoozing nearby.
- In the lead-up to the movie's end, a few of the soldiers are listening to a French record while Upham translates.
- Just as Reiben's about to go AWOL on the team, he wordlessly rejoins them and helps to bury Wade.
- The one time Reiben calls Jackson "Bumpkin" will make you smile.
- When the squad finally finds Ryan and tell him about his brothers and their orders, he tells them he doesn't want to leave because he doesn't want to abandon his comrades:
Miller: Is that what they're supposed to tell your mother? When they send her another folded American flag?
Ryan: Tell her that when you found me, I was here. And I was with the only brothers I had left. And there was no way I was going to desert them. I think she'll understand that.