A good tagline can prove to be a particularly valuable piece of a movie’s promotional marketing. In just one line it can let the prospective audience know what the film is all about, its themes, tone and mentality, and in doing so it can help in some small way to lure in undecided potential viewers. Some are clever, some are funny and some just sum up their movie to perfection.
There are plenty to choose from out there, but after careful consideration I’ve narrowed it down to a top 15 of all time. Wherever possible I’ve included an image of the tagline being displayed on the movies’ promotional poster, but there is the odd one which I must confess proved just too darned scarce to find.
Oh, and I’m afraid Crank 2′s classic “He was dead…but he got better”, didn’t actually make the cut. Sorry about that.
15. Full Metal Jacket – “Vietnam can kill me, but it can’t make me care.”
Dripping in anti-war sentiment and counter-culture attitude, this classic Kubrick tagline captures the tone of the film to a tee. The anti-authoritarian streak which runs throughout the movie, as well as its searing critique of the Vietnam War itself, is distilled down into this one simple line. The ethos captured by this strikingly non-enthusiastic attitude is exactly that which is displayed by Matthew Modine’s Private Joker, particularly after he gets out of Gunnery Sergeant Hartman’s hellish boot camp. Out in the field as a combat correspondent he wears a peace sign on his uniform as a matter of pride and his lack of interest in the American army’s reasons for going to war is plain to see. They can send him to war, but that doesn’t mean he has to like it.