There are a lot of terrible movie titles out there, and everyone has their list, but most of these titles are attached to terrible films! It's when bad titles are attached to good movies that there starts to be a problem. For instance, this week, The Men Who Stare at Goats hits theaters, and we thought it was a lot of fun, but that title is a real snoozer. Who's going to go see this movie with that title? Yes, they stare at goats, but they stare at them to make their hearts stop beating! Why not call the movie Goat Killers? Or Heartstoppers? Or The Men Who Kill Goats With Their Minds? We looked at the last decade and found a bunch of film titles we think misrepresent or detract from the films they're attached to, for various reasons.
This film is based on a book, which is based on fact ... or some facts. As the opening slate puts it, "More of this is true than you'd like to believe." However, this fictionalized version of those facts really feels like something that came entirely out of the minds of the Coen brothers, and not just because some famous faces from their work (George Clooney, Jeff Bridges) star in this film... though that certainly doesn't help matters at all. But that's not to say that bearing a strong resemblance to a Coens movie is a bad thing -- it's a perfectly fine thing to aspire to. And when it is done well here, it's really funny... but when it isn't, it's pretty dull and boring. Luckily, there's more of the former than the latter, and this ends up being a solid, if not stellar, film.