There are a lot of dumb movie titles out there. This week alone two such films are opening –- 'Drive Angry 3D' and 'Biutiful.' The former is just plain stupid. Drive angry? Really? The poster doesn't help, either, with Nicolas Cage grimacing, well, angrily, behind the wheel. You'd think a movie about a guy who breaks out of hell to save his baby granddaughter from a satanic sacrifice could elicit a less moronic title. Like 'Vigilante From Hell,' for instance. Or, you know, anything else.
The latter, 'Biutiful,' is annoying because of the intentional misspelling. That isn't how you spell beautiful in English, Spanish or any other language. I've heard the rationale behind the purposeful disregard for the dictionary. Apparently it's a nod to the orthographical spelling in Spanish of how the English "beautiful" sounds to Spanish speakers.
Ok, fine, I get it. But that doesn't mean I have to like it. Proper spelling and grammar have been steadily going downhill alongside the proliferation of text culture, not to mention Spell Check and Autocorrect. With all of the fancy technology to "fix" our spelling, a lot of people today probably don't know how to spell things properly on their own, and intentionally misspelled movie titles aren't going to help matters one bit. Not one bit, I tell you!
'Biutiful' may very well be a great movie. Director Alejandro Gonzalez Iñarritu ('Babel,' '21 Grams') has an excellent track record. Plus Javier Bardem scored an Oscar nomination for his role, so that certainly bodes well for the quality. I'll probably go see it. But seeing the intentionally misspelled title on my ticket isn't going to be easy.
'Biutiful' isn't the first misspelled movie title to grind my gears. (This misspelling phenomenon is even spilling over into food -- don't get me started on Funcheez!) Here's a list of the top five incorrectly spelled movie titles that annoy me the most.
Think I'm completely out to lunch and some of these Spell Check shirkers are justified? Let me know in the comments!
1. 'Simon Sez'
I don't expect much from Dennis Rodman films, but this incredible misspelling is going too far! Yes, too far for even a Dennis Rodman vehicle co-starring Dane Cook. I know Dennis is famous for pushing boundaries and being outrageous, but this flagrant disrespect of the English language is a little too outrageous for my taste. Get a dictionary!
2. 'Inglourious Basterds'
Like the rationale for the 'Biutiful' misspelling, 'Basterds' director Quentin Tarantino has said in interviews that 'Basterds' is more aligned with how you pronounce the word than its correct spelling. OK, with that logic in mind, I'm hereby going to refer to the esteemed director as Kwin-ton Tearonteeeno. P.S., Kwin-ton –- that explanation doesn't account for the gross misspelling of 'Inglourious.'
3. 'Nobody's Perfekt'
Is this supposed to be funny? Because it really isn't. I see what they're trying to do here, and it isn't working. It's far too obvious. And cheap. And unoriginal. I hold obscure '80s movies that nobody remembers to a higher standard.
4. 'Phat Girlz'
I'll let "Phat" slide because technically it's an acronym for "pretty hot and tempting" (or something much cruder, depending on whom you believe about the term's origin). I object to the Z in "Girlz." That's just overkill. I'm surprised Mo'Nique was able to go on to win an Oscar with this on her resume. Speaking of intentional misspellings, what is up with "Mo'Nique"? "Monica" just wasn't doing it for her?
5. 'The Pursuit of Happyness'
I realize that this misspelling is justified by the movie's plot. But that doesn't mean it wasn't annoying to look at what appeared to be an embarrassing typo or moronic mistake in the months leading up to its release.