Top Five… worst taglines

gijoesceneA few weeks ago Ross McG gave his verdict on the best movie taglines and the response was tremendous, thanks to you all and the good people at IMDb. As a special treat, now Ross McD has named his least favourite taglines. We can’t wait to hear yours…

5. GI Joe: The Rise Of Cobra (2009): ‘When all else fails, they don’t.’


Yikes. It sounds like a sentence used to promote a toilet cleaner, not an elite crime-fighting unit. Strangely, the poster’s co-tagline to describe the bad guys – ‘Evil never looked so good.’ – isn’t that awful. Never has a movie been so badly marketed yet turned out so successful.

4. Jaws: The Revenge (1987): ‘This time… it’s personal.’


Someone thought it would be a good idea to advertise yet another (atrocious) sequel to arguably the greatest film ever by making it sound like a lame cop drama. As a series of words, this tagline is clichéd but adequate. Yet when attached to a movie about a shark eating people, it pretty much serves as a warning to stay the hell away from the cinema. About as bland as a tagline can be.

3. The Manchurian Candidate (1962): ‘If you come in five minutes after this picture begins, you won’t know what it’s all about!’


Fifty years ago, movie-makers were so paranoid their audience was filled with idiots they felt the need to tell them to arrive on time. Alfred Hitchcock was famous for this, as his taglines for Psycho (‘It is required that you see Psycho from the very beginning!’) and Vertigo (‘You should see it from the beginning!’) attest. Even he is trumped by the first part of The Manchurian Candidate’s blurb, however, which pretty much calls its potential viewers a bunch of dumbasses. If only Transformers 2’s tagline had taken a similar approach.

2. The Avengers (1998): ‘Two amazing secret agents. One diabolical madman. Conditions are dark. The forecast is deadly. Tea, anyone?’ 


Two talented actors cash in their pay cheques. One terrible tagline. Conditions are awful. The film sucks. Triple whiskey, anyone? 

1. The Sisterhood Of The Traveling Pants (2005): ‘Laugh. Cry. Share the pants.’ 


If you have a shocking film title, you may as well have a shocking tagline to go along with it. There’s something quite admirable about the wretchedness of this tagline. Personally, I feel using a word from the title is a form of cheating, which is why I can’t stand Pulp Fiction’s ‘You won’t know the facts until you’ve seen the fiction.’ However, The Sisterhood Of The Traveling Pants gets extra marks against it because, well, uh, it has the word ‘pants’ on its poster. Twice. The film itself may be very good, but I will never know because I will never see it. Renting a DVD where a gang of teenage girls ‘share the pants’ might get me into trouble.




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10 Responses to “Top Five… worst taglines”

  1. It might be the only trailer, where the tagline caused an audible “Ewww” when it appeared on screen. SEED OF CHUCKY, which actually got away with the tagline:

    “This November, Get a load of Chucky”

    ( Game over boys – nobody’s topping that )

  2. SatriVision Says:

    This tagline for OUT FOR JUSTICE seems better suited for a comedy about domestic chores:

    “He’s a cop. It’s a dirty job… but somebody’s got to take out the garbage.”

  3. mcarteratthemovies Says:

    Also, the “Sisterhood” poster has, uh, an ass on it. This, I think, contributes to the overall suckiness of the marketing — a pity, because I actually thought the film itself was pretty well done!

  4. How about Crank: High Voltage?
    “He was dead… but he got better.”

    Or a Steven Segal special from Above the Law:
    “He was a covert agent trained in Vietnam. He has a master 6th degree black belt in Aikido… and family in the Mafia. He’s a cop with an attitude”

    Or Basic Instinct:
    “A brutal murder. A brilliant killer. A cop who can’t resist the danger.”

    I love the A-B-C logic of eighties film slogans. They don’t make ’em like they used to.

  5. Kinda like Avengers the most. Dear God did that movie suck.

  6. “It’s Shocking! Beyond your imagination!” – Manos The Hands Of Fate
    “That’s Hot.That’s Not” – The Hottie and The Nottie

    “Enchanting World Of Make-Believe!” – Santa Claus (1959)

    “The Original Boogyman Is Back!” – Troll 2
    (Favorite Line) “They’re eating her,then thy’re gonna eat me, Oh My Gooood!”
    “He’s Naughty, He’s Nice,He’s Comming To Save Christmas” – Santa With Muscles

    “The Crazed Love of a Prehistoric Giant for a Ravishing Teenage Girl” – Eegah

  7. Good stuff, though I think just about any tagline for any direct to dvd film is just as bad. Or any tagline that starts “from the director of…” really? that’s all you can say about the film is reference to another film the director did?

    Anyways good list :). Though since G.I. Joe dumped $175m into production and an additional $150m into marketing and has yet to hit the $300mark internationally it’s not really financially successful yet :).

  8. I allways thought the ad guys dashed this one out so they could take a early lunch. From the Dolph Lundgren classic ” I Come in Peace “,
    ‘ Good cop.
    Bad alien.
    Big Trouble. ‘

    Not a great film, but not bad. You’ve gotta love a movie where the finale has Dolph taking on the 7 foot tall alien ( who looks like a giant surfer)
    in a hand to hand kickboxing match! Plus, it has Michael J. Pollard as a street informant named ‘ Boner ‘ !

  9. “This is no stairway to heaven” – Soultaker
    “No Sairway!, Denied!”
    “Wild Adventure… intregue” – Catalina Caper
    “Funny I don’t rmember any of that in that movie, but I did watch it on MST3-K!”
    “After the sun has set and the night wind has died comes the hour of the bat people!” – Bat People
    “From Infinity… To The Mall ” – CHeerleader Ninjas
    “Unlike Chocolate, and Penutbutter in the old Resses commercial these two good things go weird together!”

  10. […] listy goodness from Ross v Ross, who rhyme off the five worst taglines. When you read this post, scroll down to the comments section and look for my suggestion. I dare […]

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