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Film titles

I’m wondering if there is a general rule for capitalizing prepositions in film titles.

For instance, one of my favourite horror films is THE DEVIL RIDES OUT, but The Devil Rides out (lower-case “o”) is stylistically awkward. Or Ferris Bueller’s Day off. Or the classic example would be those saucy British comedies of yesteryear, the Carry on series -- no one can figure out whether to call them Carry Ons or Carry ons, and as for the one called Carry On Behind, ought we to start writing it Carry on behind?

Someone help me out of this spiral of confusion!!!

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Dave, read this (though it is somewhat unlikely to make you less confused):

Apparently, in "Ferris Bueller's Day Off," you should capitalize "off" because it is not functioning as a preposition, but instead is part of the noun construction "day off."

In "Carry On Behind," we have both the unified construction "Carry On" (so "on" is not functioning as a preposition) and a long preposition of more than five letters (where only prepositions less than five letters long are lower case).

I'll go out on a limb here and say that I think the rules for title caps are, more than any other rules, a desperate effort to nail down a purely intuitive process.

speedwell2 November 21, 2004 @ 8:33AM

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I'm really having a hard time with this question. Think Twice Before You Take This Class. This is a title of an essay. Which word should not be capialized and why? Is it a trick question?

candy_webb06 August 23, 2006 @ 5:53PM

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