A movie may be a cinematic masterpiece, but there’s a chance it may get overlooked if the title doesn’t immediately capture the audience. Someone recently asked, “what are good movies with bad titles” and we’ve listed the top 25 answers below.
“Imagine if every historical film was simply titled the year it took place. Dumb.”
Sir Sam Mendes says his grandfather Alfred spent two years in the muddy trenches, which left him with a lifelong habit of washing his hands frequently. He didn’t talk about his wartime experiences until he was in his 70s.
The Nice Guys
“Yeah, that’s a stupid title. Is it worth watching?”
“Very much worth watching. Very funny!”
“Rush Hour has almost nothing to do with the movie, except that the girl is abducted during rush hour. Nothing else takes place in traffic. It sounds like it should be an alternate title to Speed.”
“I’ve avoided watching it for years because I assumed it was just car chases and stuff.”
No Country for Old Men
“I thought it was some boring drama about retirement. That presumption kept me from watching it for years.”
“That movie was wild. I watched it with no info on its story or trailer. I was blown away by what I was watching because the title doesn’t fit at all.”
The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford
“Pretty sure it flopped based on the name alone, but such a good movie with a stacked cast.”
“It’s an amazing movie. It’s a very slow character study. Maybe they didn’t want loads of people watching it expecting a normal genre western and being annoyed.”
The Edge of Tomorrow
“The poster (and DVD cover) literally says Live. Die. Repeat. I honestly thought that was the name of the movie for the longest time. It would’ve been better than the actual title!”
“The tagline was too prominent for the posters; I think they actually changed the title to Live Die Repeat: The Edge of Tomorrow for home media.”
Lucky Number Slevin
“Came here to say Lucky Number Slevin. In Australia, they changed it to ‘The Wrong Man.'”
“Lucky Number Slevin is my favorite movie of all time. Glad to see it. Doesn’t seem well known despite its cast.”
A Fish Called Wanda
John Cleese chose the name “Archie Leach,” Cary Grant’s real name, because he was born twenty miles away from where Grant was born and because it was the closest Cleese could get to being Grant.
The Man From U.N.C.L.E.
“I wouldn’t say it was a terrible title, but definitely a weird and unfitting one. However, the movie was good!”
“The Man From UNCLE would have had multiple sequels if the title clicked better with the masses.”
“Generic name for an excellent movie with one of the best twists.”
“Ugh! That movie was one of many from the trend of naming movies as adjective + noun, with no helpful description of the movies themselves. The movie itself was good, though.”
The Killing Of A Sacred Deer
“Agree. It’s a dumb name, but actually a good, creepy movie.”
“That whole movie felt try-hardy for a David Lynch vibe, especially the title.”
The Shawshank Redemption
“It’s obviously very well-regarded now, but, on release, that title hurt it at the box office.”
“Stephen King’s original title is Rita Hayworth and The Shawshank Redemption. Very glad it wasn’t called that either.”
“I can’t believe The Shawshank Redemption isn’t the top.”
How to Train Your Dragon
“Even as a kid, I didn’t want to see this movie (which eventually became one of my favorites) due to the name!”
“They named it that because it’s based on a book, but the book and film have completely different plots, so it still doesn’t make sense.”
Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
“Kiss Kiss Bang Bang is the title of Pauline Kael’s second collection of movie reviews. He asserts that these words are “the briefest statement imaginable of the basic appeal of movies.” The quote is a simple way to say the famous Godard quote: “All you need to make a film is a girl and a gun.”
The Shape of Water
“The Shape of Water is too pretentious a title. I think they named it to appeal more at the Oscars. ‘The Amphibian Fishman from the Outer World’ sounded too vivid but would have been more accurate.”
“Timecrimes sounds a little too pulpy for the sombreness of the movie, but we can blame that on translation from Spanish.”
“Yep, “Los Cronocrimenes” sounds way better. “Timecrimes” sounds like an action film. Still a very good sci-fi thriller.”
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer
“I always thought it sounded like a ridiculous title.”
“I love that movie. It has so many layers to it and keeps you on your toes till the end.”
“Yeah! It had me hooked from start to finish.”
“It’s not a masterpiece, but a fun cast and a snapshot of 1999, going to raves.”
“It’s brilliant, but the title is really odd. The only time it fits is when they’re in the car, gunning the accelerator to get away from the drug dealer. And even that’s a stretch.”
Lars And The Real Girl
“This movie was a delightful surprise. Be a weirdo anytime you want, Ryan.”
To help Ryan Gosling stay in character, the real doll was treated like an actual person, as is done by the characters in the movie. She was dressed privately in her own trailer and was only present for scenes that she was in.
“My brother gets his bill and calls his wife. Sexy Beast!? It took them a month to connect the dots, called me, and asked about the movie I watched.
The Linguini Incident
“WOW, I love this movie & NO ONE EVER KNOWS IT!”
“I just looked it up on Just Watch and in my public library. Neither has any record of it, though it is on IMDB. I’m guessing it’s not about pasta, then?!”
Death To Smoochy
“Absolute classic Robin Williams. A MUST-SEE.”
“When he gets asked what his response is to those who say he has anger management issues, he just says, ‘Who the hell said that?!’ I love it.”
I Still Know What You Did Last Summer
“‘I know what you did last summer too’ would make more sense.”
“I know how to improve it: ‘I know what you did last summer, which is a subsequent summer to the summer in which I previously knew what you did.’ Perfect.”
The Power of the Dog
To get into the character, Benedict Cumberbatch didn’t wash for almost two weeks at the outset of the shoot. He also started chain smoking, and he felt sick after each take. He went so far that he got nicotine poisoning three times.
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