The Tagline: "You know the name. You know the number."
Why It's Great: Having been off our screens for a good few years, Bond returned in style, leaner, smoother and far less camp than he'd been in years. This tagline embodies all those attributes by oozing cool without trying too hard…
If It Was Long-Winded: "You know the name. You know the number. Unless you don't, in which case we're talking about James Bond, 007."
The Forty Year Old Virgin (2005)
The Tagline: "The longer you wait, the harder it gets."
Why It's Great: There's nothing like a good double-entendre, is there? Well, it works for a sex comedy at least. Might not be such a good choice for a Holocaust drama…
If It Was Long-Winded: "He's had to wait ages for sex, so understandably, his old chap has got really hard! Wait, that's not how it works, is it? Get the textbook!"
Kill Bill vol. 1 (2003)
The Tagline: "Here comes the Bride."
Why It's Great: It's a brilliant sort-of-pun, and works especially well when accompanied by the image of a blood-spattered, sword-waving Uma Thurman, looking just about as far from bridal as you could possibly imagine.
If It Was Long-Winded: "He walked her down the aisle… someone will have to carry her up it again."
Chicken Run (2000)
The Tagline: "Escape, or die frying."
Why It's Great: Not only is it an excellent pun, but it also conjures a rather macabre image for a family film. Think we'll just cancel that KFC…
If It Was Long-Winded: "If they don't escape, they'll end up in the deep-fat fryer, so don't think there's nothing at stake. Because there is."
Saturday Night Fever (1977)
The Tagline: "Catch it."
Why It's Great: "Small, but perfectly formed, it works brilliantly in tandem with the title. Anything longer, "Catch the fever" say, would have seemed corny, but this just works.
If It Was Long-Winded: "You put your right leg in, then your right leg out, in out, in out, you shake it all about…"
AVP: Alien vs. Predator (2004)
The Tagline: "Whoever wins… we lose."
Why It's Great: Cool in a geeky kind of way, this one-liner is far snappier and wittier than anything in the script.
If It Was Long-Winded: "It doesn't matter whether the Alien beats the Predator, or the Predator beats the Alien, because both of them are monsters, and both of them kill humans."
Knocked Up (2007)
The Tagline: "What if this guy got you pregnant?"
Why It's Great: It swerves the more obvious marketing route of tapping into a young man's fear of responsibility by turning the tables to address the female audience. Seth Rogen's big schlubby face helps sell this one immeasurably.
If It Was Long-Winded: "This is Ben. He's unemployed, fascinated by porn and lives with a whole bunch of his stoner buddies. He just got you pregnant."
Office Space (1999)
The Tagline: "Work sucks."
Why It's Great: Not only is it a callback to director Mike Judge's work on Beavis & Butthead , but it also expresses a sentiment that every passerby can relate to on one level or another.
If It Was Long-Winded: "Work sucks. Particularly if you work in IT for a dead-end company run by assholes."
Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986)
The Tagline: "One man's struggle to take it easy."
Why It's Great: It sums up Ferris' modus operandi in a nutshell. Just the right side of the kind of thing you might see printed on a t-shirt.
If It Was Long-Winded: "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."
Star Wars (1977)
The Tagline: "A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away."
Why It's Great: By employing the language of the fairytale, this one taps into the part in the human psyche that aches to be a child again. And what better way than to rediscover that childlike sense of wonder than by buying a ticket to Star Wars ?
If It Was Long-Winded: "Once upon a tim, there was a young man named Luke. Well, no, actually before that there was a boy named Anakin…"
The Truman Show (1998)
The Tagline: "On the air. Unaware."
Why It's Great: So catchy and so perfectly apposite, it's almost as though the tagline were written as a jumping off point for the film. And we mean that it a good way…
If It Was Long-Winded: "Thanks to Big Brother , this is what we've all got to look forward to…"
Saving Private Ryan (1998)
The Tagline: "The mission is a man"
Why It's Great: Punchy, to the point, unhindered by emotion… it's a great tagline that manages to swerve many of the failings of the film itself. Controversy baiters? Us?
If It Was Long-Winded: "Oh say can you see, by the dawn's early light, what so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming."
Buffalo Soldiers (2001)
The Tagline: "War is hell… but peace is fucking boring."
Why It's Great: It's a great scene-setter for this most unconventional of army movies. Indeed, it could be a direct quote from Joaquin Phoenix's tearaway soldier, such is its acerbic wit.
If It Was Long-Winded: "A war film in peace time… wait, bear with us, it's really funny!"
The Tagline: "Earth. It was fun while it lasted."
Why It's Great: A witty, understated tagline for a film that could de described as neither. if only they'd used the same flair on the actual script.
If It Was Long-Winded: "Already seen Deep Impact ? Come and see it again, now with added explosions."
Army Of Darkness (1991)
The Tagline: "Trapped in time. Surrounded by evil. Low on gas."
Why It's Great: The second Evil Dead sequel deserves a glibly badass tagline, and this one duly delivers. Although we would have preferred, "Yo! She-bitch! Let's go."
If It Was Long-Winded: "My name is Ash and I am a slave. Close as I can figure, the year is thirteen hundred A.D and I'm being dragged to my death. It wasn't always like this…"
Jurassic Park (1993)
The Tagline: "An adventure 65 million years in the making."
Why It's Great: It evokes a nice callback to Spielberg "adventures" of the past (the Raiders re-release was accompanied by the tagline, "The return of the great adventure"), and shows remarkable restraint in not actually using the word "dinosaur". Bravo!
If It Was Long Winded: "We have a T-Rex… and a Brachiosaur… and a Triceratops… and Raptors! Lots of Raptors…"
This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
The Tagline: "Does for rock and roll what The Sound Of Music did for hills."
Why It's Great: Wilfully stupid and totally unhelpful to the prospective punter, it mirrors the film's offbeat sense of humour to a tee.
If It Was Long-Winded: "Imagine a concert movie that doesn't get a bit tedious after the first twenty minutes or so. You've just imagined This Is Spinal Tap !"
I Am Legend (2007)
The Tagline: "The last man on Earth is not alone"
Why It's Great: It's a clever bit of wordplay that manages to summarise the plot and arouse the interest all in one sentence. Instantly, the potential audience wants to find out what's out there with him…
If It Was Long-Winded: "The last man on Earth has New York all to himself. At least, he does until nightfall…"
Full Metal Jacket (1987)
The Tagline: "Vietnam can kill me, but it can't make me care."
Why It's Great: As an expression of counter-culture, stick-it-to-the-man bullishness, it's pretty much untouchable. It also sums up Kubrick's view of the conflict in Vietnam rather succinctly.
If It Was Long-Winded: "We don't believe in war, we don't believe in peace. How did we end up here again?"
There's Something About Mary (1998)
The Tagline: "Love is in the hair."
Why It's Great: Okay, so it works a to better if you've already seen the movie. And it's a shameless, shameless pun. But taking all that into account, we still love it. Sorry.
If It Was Long-Winded: "Ben Stiller's making a tit of himself again… buy your ticket to find out how he manages it this time!"
Apollo 13 (1995)
The Tagline: "Houston, we have a problem."
Why It's Great: Not only is it already a famous quote instantly recognisable to those in the know, it also draws in the uninitiated by spelling out the gist of the film. There are some astronauts, something goes wrong… you get the idea.
If It Was Long-Winded: "Remember that mission to the moon where the astronauts nearly didn't come home? This is the movie of that."
Black Christmas (1974)
The Tagline: "Last Christmas, you gave me your heart… now I want your eyeballs"
Why It's Great: Seasonal cinema is usually blighted by chocolate box imagery and artery-clogging candy cane sentiment. This, on the other hand, bucks that trend somewhat. Nothing says Merry Christmas like the idea of missing eyeballs…
If It Was Long-Winded: "Last Christmas, you gave me your heart… now I want your eyeballs. And a Scalextric. And a new bike (preferably a Raleigh). And Nintendo…"
The Fly (1986)
The Tagline: "Be afraid. Be very afraid."
Why It's Great: One from the less is more school of advertising, and another that's entered the cultural lexicon. When it comes to horror taglines, the vaguer they are, the more effective they tend to be.
If It Was Long-Winded: "When a man has his genetic material spliced with that of a fly, the outcome ain't pretty…"
Shaun Of The Dead (2003)
The Tagline: "A romantic comedy. With Zombies."
Why It's Great: Hey, you can't fault it for accuracy! And as high-concept taglines go, we can't think of many that sound more appealing.
If It Was Long-Winded: "Remember the Resident Evil episode of Spaced ? Well this is a bit like that, only longer."
The Tagline: "You'll believe a man can fly."
Why It's Great: It homes right in on Superman's most awesome ability. Sure he has super-strength, and eye-lasers are badass and everything, but come on… who wouldn't want to be able to fly?
If It Was Long-Winded: "You'll believe that a man can burn holes in things, just by squinting at them. Oh, and fly. He can also fly."
Close Encounters Of The Third Kind (1977)
The Tagline: "We are not alone."
Why It's Great: Beautiful in its simplicity, it establishes the film's sci-fi credentials, whilst hinting that this one will be a tale of wonder rather than horror.
If It Was Long-Winded: "There are aliens out there, but not all of them want to kill us. Some of them are just plain curious."
The Tagline: "Who ya gonna call?"
Why It's Great: As well as being unutterably cool in its own right, this one also has the added side effect of conjuring Ray Parker Junior's theme tune in the head of the reader. See? It's playing in your head right now.
If It Was Long-Winded: "Who you gonna call in the event of a haunting? Because if you're after the fire service, they're on a different number…"
The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)
The Tagline: "Family isn't a word. It's a sentence."
Why It's Great: A nice play on words that encapsulates the quirky sense of humour on show in Wes Anderson's domestic dramedy. It's also a sentiment that most people can relate to…
If It Was Long-Winded: "If you thought Ben Stiller had it rough in Meet The Parents , wait until you get a load of these guys!"
Jaws 2 (1978)
The Tagline: "Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water…"
Why It's Great: Jaws ' tagline ("Don't go in the water.") was simplistic but effective, and this one riffs on its predecessor to pleasing effect. Nearly the most famous tagline in movie history. Nearly, but not quite…
If It Was Long Winded: "Remember Bruce? Turns out he wasn't the only man-eating shark in existence. Who knew?"
The Tagline: "In space no one can hear you scream."
Why It's Great: It perfectly reflects the film's marriage of sci-fi and horror, in a very catchy soundbite. It's a deliciously ominous way to sell a movie, and one that was guaranteed to pique the interest of the horror crowd, who might not otherwise have assumed the film was aimed at them…
If It Was Long-Winded: "Sound can't travel through a vacuum, so when the alien turns up, you won't be able to call for help. Unless you're on the Nostromo, where there is Oxygen."