Singled out…seriously

Posted by · 9:56 am · September 23rd, 2009

Okay, so “A Serious Man,” “A Single Man,” something has to give, right?  I haven’t seen the latter, but I imagine it’s an apt title.  However, if I’m honest, the Coen brothers’ title doesn’t really say much about the film, nor is it really representative (in my mind, at least) of it’s penetrating, expertly rendered themes.  It doesn’t really work on any level for me, actually.

So my question is this: What are the odds on getting a title change, boys?  Both films are going to be in play this Oscar season so it’s fine to recognize that and steer clear of the confusion, but really, I think you can do better.

It’s releasing next month, so probably no dice.  But, you know, just one guy’s opinion on a slow news day…

→ 20 Comments Tags: , | Filed in: Daily

20 responses so far

  • 1 9-23-2009 at 10:51 am

    todkommt said...

    Have you thought about ‘Up’ and ‘Up in the Air’?
    If these 4 pictures get nominated… the annoucement of the nominees’ list will be weird.

  • 2 9-23-2009 at 11:09 am

    The Other James D. said...

    That’s been running through my mind for weeks now. It’ll be amusing to see the last 4 nominees (alphabetically) be ASeM, ASiM, Up, and UITA.

    One has to wonder though if any lazy Academy voters, who only vote based on buzz, will be stupid enough to confuse either one of ASM when ranking their Top 10.

    I definitely think “Single” deserves to keep its title, since its from the book of the same title and all.

  • 3 9-23-2009 at 11:31 am

    Mr. Milich said...

    9, Nine, District 9, etc.

    A Serious Man opens next week. No chance in hell the name changes.

  • 4 9-23-2009 at 11:49 am

    Mike_M said...

    @Mr. Milich dont forget $9.99 (though not on Oscar radar)

  • 5 9-23-2009 at 12:44 pm

    James D. said...

    And to think, we almost had two different films named Push.

  • 6 9-23-2009 at 1:02 pm

    The Other James D. said...

    Speaking of The Motion Picture Formerly Known As Push, I really hate the long and garish subtitle after “Precious” and hope they will remove it for the awards season nominations. I’ll gag if I have to see that entire title, which strays from the film it feels like, on all the lists all season.

  • 7 9-23-2009 at 1:21 pm

    j said...

    Based on the book, A Single Man is very much about his being single and feeling that thanks to having lost that which made him not single. Now he drifts from person to person without a real anchor, a relationship that tethers and ‘completes’ him.

  • 8 9-23-2009 at 4:32 pm

    Robert Hamer said...

    I wonder how title confusion will actually factor in on the race. Can you imagine 9 being nominated for Best Picture simply because AMPAS members thought they were voting for the musical? I mean, it’s got to happen to at least a few people considering the amount of moviegoers who fall for mockbusters at video rental stores.

  • 9 9-23-2009 at 8:27 pm

    Mr. Milich said...

    Good thing AMPAS doesn’t vote with chads…

  • 10 9-23-2009 at 9:03 pm

    Glenn said...

    You might find a name change occurring overseas, but not in America. Films undergo name changes internationally more than one may think.

  • 11 9-23-2009 at 10:04 pm

    Adam Smith said...

    OK, I apologize if this question was asked before, but I’m gonna ask again, just to be 100% sure. On the ballot, do they list the producers (i.e., the people who’d get the actual Oscar) next to the film? If that’s the case, the discussion of name confusion is a moot point, because no one will confuse the Coens’ produced A Serious Man with A Simple Man (NOT produced by the Coens). Similarly, they won’t confused the Weinstein produced Nine for 9. However, a name change for Nine is easier. Nine: The Musical. Easy peasy. But then again, I honestly don’t think the name confusion thing will be as big an issue as we think it is.

    In other words, it’s a slow news day. :P

  • 12 9-23-2009 at 11:19 pm

    Chad Hartigan said...

    I think we’re all smart enough to handle some similarly titled films thrown at us. And if we aren’t, we probably wouldn’t like A Single Man or A Serious Man anyway.

  • 13 9-24-2009 at 4:55 am

    Simon Miraudo said...

    What about in 1999? What if AMPAS had nominated American PIE for Best Picture instead of American Beauty?

    Seriously? I think they’ll do just fine telling the difference between the two movies.

  • 14 9-24-2009 at 8:11 am

    Bill M. said...

    Kris, are you serious?

    A title change. We’re not talking about a film coming out next year. We’re talking about next week.

    You’re really pulling for teeth on this one.

  • 15 9-24-2009 at 8:21 am

    The Other James D. said...

    Good Lord, everyone needs to lighten up. This post was tongue-in-cheek. Just a droll topic to ponder over for the lulz.

  • 16 9-24-2009 at 11:48 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Bill: Just sayin’. I’ve never thought the title fit the film so, you know, whatever.

    Glad to see The Other James D. gets it, though…

  • 17 9-24-2009 at 12:50 pm

    Brian said...

    Does the ballot for Best Pic noms actually list ANY films? There are a few hundred eligible, so I expect it’s just a blank ballot with perhaps a reference to a separate list of eligible films.

    I don’t think Simple/Serious (and let’s not forget Solitary Man, if that gets a release) will be a problem, but I do wonder about 9/Nine. PriceWaterhouseCoopers better have some way of confirming the voters’ intention with those two!

  • 18 9-24-2009 at 12:51 pm

    Brian said...

    …oops, that obviously should have said Single/Serious, not Simple/Serious. Maybe it will be a problem after all! ;)

  • 19 9-24-2009 at 1:12 pm

    The Other James D. said...


    I look forward to, aside from seeing the film itself, better understanding your perspective on the title when it’s released next week though.

    Also: This is one of the problems with cinema today. There are several gems this year, but all in all, so many film titles are bland and uninspired. I dislike one-word-titles much of the time.

  • 20 9-24-2009 at 2:59 pm

    Adam Smith said...

    To be fair, Kris, this isn’t the first time you’ve pondered the name confusion topic. Hard to tell if you’re kidding :P