Basic Instinct 2 (2006)
The tagline: 'Everything interesting begins in the mind.'
Why it's rubbish: Umm, doesnt everything begin in the mind? Thoughts. Feelings. The desire to go swimming, have a chocolate eclair, gaze at Sharon Stone's Photoshop-sculpted but strangely mesmerising legs...
Also, 'interesting' is a notorious euphemism for 'not interesting'
And no minds were involved in the making of this motion picture.
Our version: 'An old lady has sex with David Morrissey.'
The Butterfly Effect (2004)
The tagline: 'It will all end in the beginning.'
Why it's rubbish: A man in the Butterfly Effect marketing department thought that, given the film's theme of cause/effect mathematics, it would be cute to present the film itself as a complex system, prone to the vagaries of chaos theory.
But the film is not a complex system. It is a cack-handed, straight to DVD-quality thriller whose script should have been thrown into a big burning bin.
Our version: 'Your interest in this film will end when you see that Ashton Kutcher is in it.'[page-break]
The Matrix Revolutions (2003)
The tagline: 'Everything that has a beginning has an end.'
Why it's rubbish: Again with the ends and beginnings! (See also Terminator: Salvation )
The trouble with this one is the breathtaking, overly literal, can't-be-arsedness of it.
For the shattering climax of their quasi-existential sci-fi epic, the Wachowskis could have tried a little harder than just telling us that, ummm, stuff that starts also stops at some point.
Our version: 'The final film in the popular Matrix trilogy.'
The tagline: 'Moving at the speed of life, we are bound to collide with each other.'
Why it's rubbish: And what, exactly, would this 'speed of life' be? Brisk walk? Determined canter? 46mph?
The writer thinks that, because it sounds a bit like 'speed of light', then it must, like, be poetic and mean stuff .
For us, it just pulls up an image of a load of people shuffling about in a crowd, occasionally bumping into each other and shrugging their shoulders and saying sorry.
Our version: 'Racism and prejudice is a really bad thing.' [page-break]
Ocean's Twelve (2004)
The tagline: 'Twelve is the new eleven.'
Why it's rubbish: Smug, slappable film. Smug, slappable tagline.
Twelve isn't the new eleven, is it? It's eleven - with one more added.
They couldn't even be bothered to back up the tagline by making sure twelve people were in the poster. It might have been an idea to at least include Julia Roberts - since she's the extra member...
But, no. A big red '12' and 8 people.
See the white bit down the bottom-right? That's where Steven Soderbergh's maths teacher would have written 'See me!'
Our version: 'They're back - and this time there's one more of them, although you can't see that from this picture.'
The tagline: 'Anything that makes people happy can't be bad can it?'
Why it's rubbish: Possibly the least inspiring question ever posed by a movie poster.
They're going for a sort of teasing moral conundrum ('Look at his tie! He's a Nazi!!!') but the effect is more Random Sentence Dashed Off By The Work-Experience Fella Just Before Lunch To Make Sure The Font Looks Nice.
Our version: ' Attention, thousands of Lord Of The Rings fans! Look - it's Aragorn!'[page-break]
Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990)
The tagline: 'Here they grow again.'
Why it's rubbish: Look, the bit at the top is fine. That's good. We like that...
'We told you. Remember the rules. You didn't listen...'
Fair enough. You don't like the idea of a sequel, but it's here. Get used to it. You might watch it sometime in the future when there's nothing else on.
But 'Here we grow again'!? Select-delete!
Puns - truly the lowest, laziest form of wit.
Our version: ' Believe the Stripe!' (hype).
The tagline: 'What happens when the numbers run out?'
Why it's rubbish: Least scary hypothetical situation ever.
What happens when the numbers run out? Umm, use some minus numbers? Introduce some kind of number version of quantitative easing? Make up some new ones?
We don't remember Stephen Hawking observing that numbers were finite and we'd eventually run out and have to use little semaphore symbols or pebbles or something.
So, no. We don't care. And we're not scared. And we don't want to see the film.
Our version: ' We know Nicolas Cage is in this, but look - the world might blow up. Please go and see it.'[page-break]
The tagline: 'Live your life at the point of impact.'
Why it's rubbish: Make up your mind, Haggis! Are we moving at the speed of life and bumping into each other or are we living our life at the point of impact?
Is it the actual bumping into each other that's the good bit, then? Is that where we should all be 'living'?
But once we bump into each other and the speed of life slows to a stop, how can that be the best state to live in - since we're no longer moving? At the speed of life?
Surely it's a good idea to avoid points of impact (crashes)? Particularly while driving. Or moving around at the speed of life.
Any physics professors reading - please explain this in the Comments...
Our version: 'Racism and prejudice is still a really bad thing.'[page-break]
The tagline: 'The only thing more terrifying than the last 12 minutes of this film are the first 92.'
Why it's rubbish: Errrr... Doesn't that mean you might as well walk out 12 minutes before the end, then?
Because once you've seen the really scary first 92 minutes, the final 12 minutes just won't match up.
So, the film should actually be 92 minutes long - with the not-so-scary final 12 minutes cut out...
Our version: '92 terrifying minutes of terror with no unnecessary unterrifying sequences.'
The Messengers (2007)
The tagline: 'There is evidence to suggest that children are highly susceptible to paranormal phenomena. They see what...'
Hang on. Got distracted there. Let's try again...
'There is evidence to suggest that children are highly susceptible to paranormal phenomena. They see what adults cannot. They believe what adults...'
Aagh! Sorry. Last go...
'There is evidence to suggest that children are highly susceptible to paranormal phenomena. They see what adults cannot. They believe what adults deny. And they are trying to warn us.'
Why it's rubbish: Too. Long.
A tagline needs to be quick, clipped, pithy, provocative. Not a novella.
Our version: 'Children are frightening.'
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