Saturday, April 28, 2007

Titular: more than just a funny word

Remember when movies had interesting titles?

This week at the multiplex we have:

The Condemned
The Invisible

I'm a movie fan, and even I'm having a hard time remembering what the hell these are. It almost makes me want to go see Kickin' It Old Skool - at least I know what I'm getting there.


Sheila West said...

Since the old-time movie theatres with huge massive marquees no longer exist, I have a pet peeve about movie titles NOT being COMPLETELY spelled out either on the marquee or even on the movie ticket.

Something like only 16 characters is allowed no adays for a movie ticket, and about the same for the marquee.

So, "The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill and Came Down a Mountain" is billed on the marquee and printed on the ticket as "English Hill" and "The Pirates of the Caribbean" is simply "Pirates."

So I have an appreciation for short movie titles that can be neatly spelled out --with no need of any bastardizing shorthand-- on marquees and ticket stubs.

Josh said...

I worked in a movie theater in the days before the fancy movie mylars you see above each door; you know, the ones that not only have the full title, but also the logo/design. We actually had to spell out the title above each door using block letters - boring ol' black and white.

So when the title was too long, or the usher was just too lazy, the title became truncated. Thus, "A League Of Their Own" would become "League." My personal favorite: Instead of "Jason Goes to Hell," I just put "Hell." Man, I laughed and laughed over that one.

Well, early in the summer of 1993, there were two movies in theaters at the same time with similar titles but not-at-all similar content. I was standing at the concession stand one afternoon when a white woman stormed out of one theater, dragging her two little tow-headed kids behind her. She looked at me and snarled, "That was the worst Dennis the Menace movie I have ever seen!" She went out the door, never to be seen again.

Yeah, the theater had been labeled "Menace." However, it was Menace II Society.

My favorite part is that the woman failed to realize she was in the wrong theater. She actually thought that Society - which starts out with a profane, bloody convenience store robbery - was actually Dennis the Menace.