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the film criticism aspect of cyber | by maryann johanson

question of the day: If you could retitle any blockbuster, what would you call it?

Sci Fi Wire ran a piece recently about “the secret code names of 37 sci-fi blockbuster films” — which sounds cooler than it actually is. I thought it would be about the original titles for great films that we now love, and hey, wouldn’t it be funny/silly/stupid if we couldn’t stop talking about that classic film I Almost Married My Mother, and isn’t it better that we instead call it Back to the Future?

But that’s not what the piece is about. Instead, it’s about the fake titles mega productions often use to disguise the fact that they’re shooting, say, a new Star Wars movie, not actual might-have-been titles. And with the exception of the granddaddy of them all — I still want to see a movie called Blue Harvest, the code name used during shooting of Return of the Jedi, which I find very evocative and mysterious — they’re not very interesting. Incident on 57th Street was the code name for Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets? *yawn* Changing Seasons was actually The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring? Who cares?
So let’s have fun with this. Invent a working title for a film we love — or love to hate — that’s even better (or worse, in an interesting way) than the title it ended up with. Here’s mine:

The Matrix = How to Unplug from the World Without Really Trying

If you could retitle any blockbuster, what would you call it? Have fun!

(If you have a suggestion for a QOTD, feel free to email me. Responses to this QOTD sent by email will be ignored; please post your responses here.)



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  • LaSargenta

    CB already did the best one ever for me: Avatar = Dances with Thundersmurfs

    http://www.flickfilosopher.com/blog/2010/01/012710because_no_one_would_believe_i.html#comment-54499

    But, I do recall referring to Gone With The Wind as Don’t Cry For Me Atlanta.

  • Giant Squid vs Megashark = Finding Sushi

    Next Judd Aptow Comedy = Whoops, I Did It Again

    Snakes on a Plane = Big, Bad, Mutha-F**kin’ Action Movie

    Inglorious Basterds = A little less conversation (A litle more action)

  • Kenny

    Well… I think some movies based on books would have much more interesting titles if they kept the name of the book.

    One of the great examples would be ‘Bladerunner’, which was of course known as ‘Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?’ when Phillip K. Dick wrote it.

  • Daniel

    When they adapted The Secret by Rhonda Byrne into a movie, they should have called it Help Me Rhonda.

  • JoshDM

    If AVP2 took place in Colorado, then it should have been called “Colorado Nights” because that’s just an awesome name for a sci-fi flick taking place in Colorado.

  • Keith

    Here is a few that come to mind:

    Avatar = Blue Man Group

    Back The The Future 3 = Time After Time After Time

    Serenity = The Little Space Ship That Misbehaved

    Sherlock Holmes = Safehouse

    The Hurt Locker = Chest Pain

    The Wolfman = Man Who Stares Hungrily At Goats

  • Josh C.

    The Passion of the Christ becomes You Only Live Twice.
    Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen becomes Girls Gone Wild Part 281.

  • Star Wars = Water Farm Boy

    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom = Steven Speilberg and His Divorce Therapy Outlet

    Battlefield Earth = The Alien Comedy

    Jaws = A Boat Too Small

  • Keith

    Jaws 4 = Too Long In The Tooth

  • Blue Steel = Homme Fatale

    Shakespeare in Love = The Bridges of Stratford-on-Avon

    Paul Blart: Mall Cop = Travis Bickle: Mall Cop

    The Long Kiss Goodnight = Identity Crisis aka The Best Mother’s Day Movie for Action Movie Fans Ever

    Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride = The Butterfly Effect aka A Rose for Emily aka The Nightmare After Christmas

    Iron Sky = Spacetime for Hitler

    The Sorcerer’s Apprentice = Just Like Harry Dresden But Not–Thank God

  • drewryce

    Silent Running – “Huey, Dewey and Looey Go Blewie”

    Dr Zhivago – “Maybe Emigrating to Paris Isn’t Such a Bad Idea”

    Wuthering Heights – “Heathcliff Haunts The Heather”

    Couples Retreat – “Who Greenlit This Shit?”

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