The Long Week Closes: Capital Idea July 22, 2017

Throughout this site’s existence, my policy regarding all non-English language movie titles was to write the first letter in uppercase and everything else in lowercase, which appears to also be IMDb’s policy and was a rule I first read about in my film studies class in college. This practice now seems woefully incorrect. On the occasions that I find French-language articles, they frequently (but not always) capitalize the first letters of words that come after the first one.

And even if it’s sometimes true, applying this standard to all languages except English is far too broad–Portuguese, for example, appears to follow the same title rules as English, capitalizing the first letter of most words except conjunctions, definite and indefinite articles, and so on.

My new policy is to put my faith in the various foreign language versions of Wikipedia. I will rely on their spelling. It’s far too much work to go back and correct the capitalization on the several thousand film pages that already exist on this website. But I can at least start with La Chinoise and La Jetée, which I normally would’ve spelled with a lowercase c and a lowercase j, respectively. French Wikipedia spells it this way so I will too. (I’ll admit right now that I have no idea what the rules are for capitalizing the first letters of each word in French titles. Why does French Wikipedia spell it “Sans soleil,” with a lowercase s on the second word? Does it have something to do with the title not beginning with an article?)

New Releases
Dunkirk (Christopher Nolan, United Kingdom, 2017, 18 reviews)
Kékszakállú (Gastón Solnicki, Argentina, 2016, 18 reviews)
Mister Universo (Tizza Covi & Rainer Frimmel, Italy, 2016, 10 reviews)
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (Luc Besson, United States, 2017, 8 reviews)
Girls Trip (Malcolm D. Lee, United States, 2017, 8 reviews)

Cinema of the Past
Desert Hearts (Donna Deitch, United States, 1985, 4 reviews)
La Chinoise (Jean-Luc Godard, France, 1967, 10 reviews)
Strange Days (Kathryn Bigelow, United States, 1995, 7 reviews)
Crimes and Misdemeanors (Woody Allen, United States, 1989, 6 reviews)
Night of the Living Dead (George A. Romero, United States, 1968, 12 reviews)
La Jetée (Chris Marker, France, 1962, 13 reviews)

Images: Dunkirk, Desert Hearts

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