Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Comma Chameleon

A story in the weekend edition of The Vancouver Sun (yes, I'm just getting to it now--it was maggoty with mothers here on the weekend) offers up some compelling background on the city's premier specialty video store, Videomatica, which--say it ain't so!--is closing its doors after 28 years as a 4th Avenue fixture. Damn you, cheap and efficient movie downloads!

Deep into the obit, the piece reveals that the cinephile's boutique-of-choice celebrated its 25th anniversary by compiling a list of their all-time top rentals. The chart-topper was the quirky British comedy Withnail and I. After that...
The top 10 was rounded out by Wings of Desire, Down by Law, Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!, The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Betty Blue, Blood Simple, The Decameron and Baraka.
As countless movie nerds with hot-butter-stained t-shirts will attest, the title of the Russ Meyer schlock classic is Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! And when you have a series that contains an item like this with its own internal comma you need to separate said items with semi-colons to avoid confusion. As it stands, it reads like these are two movies: Faster (which sounds like one of those execrable Vin Diesel car chase pornfests) and Pussycat! Kill! Kill! (which sounds like a command given to a homicidal housecat).

A little detective work (ie: counting) tells me that the author of the piece did in fact think these were two movies, because only by cleaving the title into two films can you get the nine titles you need to round out the top ten.

Speaking of movie title missteps, the Huffington Post is reporting that Philip Seymour Hoffman is set to star in a big-screen jab at L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology. The movie, which should be a doozy, is the work of Paul Thomas Anderson, who, we're told, is
an Oscar-nominated writer/director, whose biggest hits include "Boogie Nights," "Punch, Drunk, Love" and "There Will Be Blood."
That should be Punch-Drunk Love. Although I must admit that Punch, Drunk, Love sounds like a sequel to Eat, Pray, Love that I would actually want to see.