The Strange Name Movie

Synopsis: We've all know the kid who lived in fear of morning roll call at school. The teenage girl assailed by cruel nicknames and rude limericks. The man who dreads giving his name to the maitre'd at the restaurant. We've gathered them together to share their stories in a documentary film that covers the funny, the tragic, and everything in between.
Genre: Documentary
Director(s): Richard Tilkin


[mellow piano music]

- Hey, Erica.

My name is Lisa,

and I'm calling

from a video production

company in Boston.

- We're producing

a documentary on people

with interesting

and unusual names.

- And we were wondering

if you would be interested

in sharing some of

your experiences

having the name

Bill Cosby.

- I know that you pronounce

your name Bails and not Balls.

- Is Ronald McDonald in?

- Hi, I'm trying to get in

touch with Dr. Bonnie Beaver.

- Hey, this message is

for Mr. David Boring.

- Hello, this message

is for Jack Goff.

- I'm wondering if you've

had any experiences

with your name.

I'm not even sure exactly

how it's pronounced.

[woman] It is as you would

imagine. Hore.

- Okay, all right.

Have you--

...problems with it

all the time. All the time.

- [Narrator] Most of us

have names that are neutral,

they don't provoke dumb

jokes when we're introduced.

As kids, we didn't get

mocked at roll call.

But many names

are not neutral.

They suggest

a negative attribute,

or have sexual connotations.

The name may already belong

to a famous or

a notorious person.

It may, for any

number of reasons,

quite simply be funny.

- My name is Mark Gotobed.

A smile will come

across people's faces,

and they will say,

"Hold on.

"As in go to bed?"

And I will say, often now,

"Yes, just like you're

telling your children

"to go to bed."

- When I'm addressed in court,

things are kind of formal.

Just as I would say

Your Honor or Judge,

I'm addressed as

Attorney Doktor.

My name is Joseph Doktor,

and people call me Joe Doktor.

You'd get a lot of people say,

"Well, you know, if

you became a doctor,

"you'd be Dr. Doktor."

Well, yeah, I was a great

disappointment to my mother

because I became a lawyer

and she really wanted me

to be a doctor.

- My name is Linda Slutsky.

The name is from Russia,

and their name was Slutzky,

[spells name aloud]

And then one day,

my family decided to

change it to Slutsky.

First time I realized

the name was unusual

was when I was

in high school.

A friend of mine

said, "Slut,"

and I went, "What?"

And then all of a sudden,

a group of boys was

following me down the hall,

and I had to run

down the stairwell.

And I didn't know

what was going on.

I went home and I looked

it up in the dictionary,

and lo and behold,

I found out it meant,

I think, a whore?

I was devastated 'cause

I wasn't like that.

I was like a really prudish

little girl in high school.

- My name is Stuart Putz.

I've had the name

since I've been,

I think, around

three months old.

I was adopted.

There probably was some

heckling here and there,

but I've always been

a pretty jovial kid

as well as like to wrassle,

so if somebody gave me

too much of a hard time,

I'd go have a good

rough tumble with them,

and that usually would stop.

- This is my adopted mother,

Jeannie Escobar Putz.

This is my grandfather,

Clifford Putz,

with my cousin Lonnie Putz,

who is the son of Larry Putz.

This was on the Putz Ranch.

Probably the biggest

thing I've heard is,

"You're such a putz!"

Okay. All right.

Guess that's my last name,

so yes, I am a Putz.

But you know, some

people look at that as

you're a klutz, or

you're a failure.

- We're the Clutzes.

- We're the Clutzes.

- Why did you do this?

- I was voted Most

Clumsy in high school,

so you know, that was

the superlative I got.

It was the only

superlative I got,

so clumsiest person

because of my name,

not because I'm

generally clumsy.

All the way through

grade school,

I kind of, kinda had that

little pit in my stomach

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    "The Strange Name Movie" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 7 May 2021. <>.

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