While it's not unusual to have snippets or references to other films and TV shows in movies, sometimes there's a director who will go out of their way to include a totally fake movie within their movie. The story-within-a-story is a fairly frequently used device used in many types of narration, including books, plays and even video games.
Below I've compiled a list of 10 movies-within-movies that we would love to see made into feature length films, so take a look through and tell me in the comments which one you'd like to see most:
1. Angels With Filthy Souls as seen in Home Alone
This black and white gangster film was made especially for the Home Alone universe. The clip shown in Home Alone is not even two minutes long but it's crammed full of great quotes ("keep the change, ya filthy animal!") from gangsters Johnny and Snakes. The title of the movie is a reference to the 1938 film Angels with Dirty Faces and it also spawned the fake sequel...
2. Angels with Even Filthier Souls as seen in Home Alone 2: Lost in New York
That's right, gangster Johnny and his Tommy gun came back, thirsty for more in Angels with Even Filthier Souls! This time instead of dealing with Snakes, it's Johnny's girlfriend Susie. Johnny claims his girl, Susie, has been "smoochin' with everybody" and once again gives her until the count of 10 to get her "lousy, lyin', low-down, four flushing carcass out my door," before finishing the clip with the ultimate seasonal greeting: "Merry Christmas, ya filthy animal...And a happy New Year."
2. Simple Jack as seen in Tropic Thunder
Tropic Thunder contained many faux film trailers and advertising throughout the movie (including Tropic Thunder itself!), but none quite as endearing as Simple Jack. In the film, the box office flop Simple Jack was the tale of a mentally-challenged farmer boy with the IQ of 5 played by Tugg Speedman (Ben Stiller). Unfortunately for Speedman, Simple Jack failed, possibly because, as Kirk Lazarus (Robert Downey Jr.) states you should "never go full retard."
3. Stab as seen in Scream
One of the most successful franchises of fake films-within-films has to be the Stab franchise from the Scream series. Based off of Gale Weathers' (Courtney Cox) book "The Woodsboro Murders" the initial Stab film is seen at the beginning of Scream 2. Throughout the Scream sequels there are more and more Stab sequels (seven in total) and it reaches peak film-within-a-film inception when in Scream 4 we see characters watching Stab 7, while the characters of that film watch Stab 6...Eek, talk about complicated!
4. See You Next Wednesday as seen in American Werewolf in London
The film See You Next Wednesday is a reoccurring joke in most films by John Landis. In some films, such as Schlock, it's simply mentioned and shown in poster form, but in other films, such as American Werewolf in London, footage of the film is partially shown. See You Next Wednesday isn't always the same genre of film in each movie, but it has the same name. In American Werewolf for example, the film is a porn film, while in Coming to America the poster shows that See You Next Wednesday will star Dan Aykroyd, Sybil Danning, Jamie Lee Curtis, Moe Howard, and James Brown.
5. Asses of Fire as seen in South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut
This controversial film-within-a-film, Asses of Fire, is an important plot device in South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut. After the boys see Terrance lighting his farts on fire and burning himself, Cartman bets Kenny that it's impossible to do so. The bet leads to Kenny lighting himself on fire, and burning to death. Kenny's death leads the Mothers Against Canada (MAC) group to launch their crusade against Canada. Also the Asses of Fire contained one of the catchiest, swear-laden songs of all time: Uncle Fucka.
6. Spice Force Five as seen in Spice World
In their film Spice World, some over-eager Hollywood writers pitch the (kind of awesome) idea to get the Spice Girls to make a film called Spice Force Five. In Spice Force Five each girl is a "crack operativs" in their own fields: a martial arts expert, counter espionage agent, explosives expert, master of disguise and Victoria (?!). While the pitch is a funny scene in Spice World, it's also a brilliant tip of the hat to another film: Pulp Fiction. In Pulp Fiction the character of Mia Wallace had filmed a pilot for the fake TV show-within-a-film Fox Force Five. The characters in Fox Force Five had very similar skills to the Spice Force Five.
7. Logjammin' as seen in The Big Lebowski
In The Big Lebowski, Maude Lebowski reveals to the Dude that her stepmother, Bunny Lebowski, is a pornstar, and starred in Jackie Treehorn's film Logjammin'. In Logjammin' Bunny went by the name 'Bunny La Joya.' Real life porn star Asia Carrera had a small cameo in the film-within-a-film as Bunny's friend Sherry.
9. Nation's Pride (Stolz der Nation) as seen in Inglourious Basterds
One of the most well known films-within-a-film has to be Nation's Pride (Stolz der Nation) in Inglourious Basterds. In the film, Nation's Pride is directed by Alois von Eichberg and is estimated to be at least 44-48 minutes long (due to the four reels required to play). In reality, the film-within-a-film was directed by Eli Roth (who played Sgt. Donny Donowitz in Inglourious Basterds) and his brother Gabriel Roth. The brothers shot the film in three days, and the total running time is 6 minutes 11 second (including credits).
10. Good Will Hunting 2: Hunting Season as seen in Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back
During Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, on their quest to Hollywood the pair accidentally end up as extras on the set of Good Will Hunting 2: Hunting Season. The pair plan on beating up Matt Damon and Ben Affleck (so they can't make a shitty sequel to an amazing film), but instead end up watching Damon and Affleck (who are just doing it for the paycheck) do the scene, before security spots them.