Allen's Blog

A Tale of Two Titles

It’s the annual Awards Season for movies, and as a voting member of the Directors Guild of America for almost 50 years, I get a lot of screening invitations in the mail, and a fair number of DVDs, too. Also, lots of warnings to not let these discs out of my hands and to destroy them after viewing.
Academy Award screener discs

And as it comes time to vote, I went through the list of 466 eligible films, all the way from Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter to Zero Dark Thirty. In choosing a title for a movie, many producers opt for brevity and simplicity, as in Lincoln, or Flight, or Skyfall. Sometimes a very fine movie comes along with a really awkward title: The Perks of Being a Wallflower (PG-13), directed by Stephen Chbosky and based on his own 1999 young-adult novel, is a case in point. The film may have not made it to your local theater, but by all means put it on your Netflix queue or find a way to see it when it goes to video. Here’s a case where a title change, perhaps to just Wallflower, could have made a difference in attracting theater bookings and audiences.

On the other hand, citing the heading of this post, there’s another strange (more than that, really) title in the eligibility list – Nipples & Palm Trees. If you really need to know more (I’d recommend against it), the trailer is on YouTube, and is most certainly Not Safe For Work.