Monday, October 11, 2010

Terrible Taglines

Last night, I saw "Wall Street 2." Now, I'm not going to review the movie as a whole, but I do want to address the subtitle: "Money never sleeps."

What a terrible tagline. I know that the phrase is used in the first movie, but it makes absolutely no sense, in general, nor when applied to the second movie.

There is absolutely nothing indicative about "money never sleeps." What is the audience supposed to understand from that? I just don't get it. Sure, it's interesting to apply a humanistic verb to money, but "sleeping" is really not the best one. How about: "Money keeps no promises," "Money makes no friends," or "Money never lies," for example? At least give us something that connects to the actual plot of the movie, please.

I keep seeing previews on TV for a movie-of-the-week called "The 19th Wife." Its tagline? "Polygamy can be murder."

What the hell kind of tagline is that? There is no way that polygamy, in general, can be murder. A tagline is supposed to reveal insight about the plot of the movie in a concise, and sometimes witty, way. There is no clever insight in "polygamy can be murder." It tells us that there is polygamy, and there is murder. You can't just synthesize the two concepts by putting them in the same sentence with some sort of the verb "to be." Lazy writing, guys.

A good tagline? Let's examine "Easy A" - "Let's not and say we did." Cue round of applause! They took a conventional phrase and shed new light on it by framing it within the concept of the movie - that a teenager says she's slept with a slew of classmates, when in reality she hasn't.

And, while "You Again" is certainly no filmic masterpiece, its tagline makes me laugh: "What doesn't kill you... is going to marry your brother." Kudos, I must say.

1 comment:

  1. I am mostly in agreeance. However...I do think "Polygamy can be murder" is an ok tagline--AS LONG as the plot of the movie involves one wife murdering another wife or the husband.

    If not, then no. It makes no sense.


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