Judging a movie by its title is a bit like judging a book by its cover – you know you shouldn’t do it, but you can’t stop yourself. A title is usually a decent indicator of what you’re about to subject yourself to. You know that Attack of the Giant Leeches is going to be a schlocky b-movie, while Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is going to be rather more highbrow.
Today I’d like to share a few of my favourite film titles, and why I like them.
Dr Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb – what a title! Who is Dr Strangelove? Why would you love the bomb? Should I be worried? It suits the satirical humour of the film down to the ground.
To Wong Foo Thanks For Everything Love Julie Newmar – weirdly, I love this title because it give nothing away. The film is about three drag queens who drive across America. The title crops up because it’s on an autographed photograph from Julie Newmar to, er, Wong Foo. Is it significant? Nope. Does it pop up again? Not as such. And yet it’s kooky and endearing just like the film.
The Devil’s Advocate – see, it’s funny, because Keanu Reeves is a lawyer, right, and he works for the devil! Though he doesn’t really defend him, so he doesn’t act as his advocate, so I guess it all falls apart there. Damn. Forget I said this one, ok?
Zombie Strippers – They’re zombies. They’re strippers. ‘Nuff said.
Megashark vs Giant Octopus – I could fill this list with cheesetastic monster movies alone. Sharktopus, Piranhaconda, Lavantula … this one wins for me, because it simultaneously promises a smackdown for the ages and also sets itself up for disappointment by being oddly unspecific about the octopus. Megashark, that’s a Megaladon, that’s a thing. But the octopus, oh that’s just a regular octopus but giant.
A Talking Cat?! – terrible film, but what a title! It’s exactly what I’d say if I saw a talking cat.
The Gingerdead Man – such a delicious pun!
Once Upon a Time in the West – conjures up images of cowboys with fairy wings, dragons with six-shooters and fir godmothers sipping whisky and spitting into spittoons. Or not.
Arachnophobia – a great warning that watching this film is a terrible, terrible idea.
The Stuff – What is it? Oh, just stuff.
Repo! : The Genetic Opera – promises exactly what the film delivers – genetically-engineered organ repossession and sopranos.
Plan 9 From Outer Space – remarkably accurate – aliens have tried 8 plans to take over the Earth. Now they try a 9th.
Night of the Living Dead – they’re dead… AND YET THEY LIVE!
The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-up Zombies – No, I didn’t make this up, it’s a real film. It will come as no surprise that it’s been featured on Mystery Science Theatre 3000.