Rocket Science Movie Poster

Rocket science Movie Poster

This is a pretty typical poster for an indie movie. Low key, showcases the critic quotes prominently and features a nice character shot.

And that is too bad. Especially if the film actually turns out to be good, like some people who saw it at Sundance are saying.

See, with a movie like this you have two options. You can play it safe and try to attract the usual art house crowd, and hope that good word of mouth carries it to a decent return at the boxoffice and at the video store. Or you can be a little bold and try to do a really memorable marketing campaign that grabs peoples attention. This second approach has a small risk of turning away the art house crowd, if it’s done poorly. But the upside is that you have a chance of reaching an audience that is a little broader, which coupled with good word of mouth could turn the movie into an actual mainstream hit.

Apparently the Rocket Science marketing is going to go for the safe approach. A good example of the bolder approach is the marketing strategy for Little Miss Sunshine, which produced, among other things, truly excellent posters. The SAW movies, especially the first one, also used a creative marketing strategy and obtained very good results.

little Miss Sunshine Poster

Now, the marketing budget for Rocket Science is probably going to be tiny, even when compared with Little Miss Sunshine and the original SAW. But that is even more reason why it should go out of it’s way to truly try something different with all the marketing materials. I really wish more small movies took a bolder approach to its marketing. But I guess it is not to be.

First SAW IV Poster

SAW IV Teaser Poster

“What are we having for dinner, sweety?”

“Torture and pain! Mwahahahahahahahah!!!!!”

Or, you know, something like that.

I, like many other people, have been a big fan of the SAW posters. They always managed to make the films seem special and interesting without having to show too much. Of course, what they did show was pretty gory.

But time passes, and we are now at the fourth installment of the franchise. So it’s only to be expected that most of the good ideas will have been used up now.

The new poster actually surprised me with it’s concept. It was not something I was expecting, and although it follows the same general look of earlier posters in the franchise, it is different enough to make me stop and take notice. But I don’t think it is quite at the same level as the best SAW posters, and it embraces the idea of torture porn a little too literally for my tastes.

Still a good, memorable poster. It just suffers from the unavoidable comparison.


30 Days of Night Movie Poster

30 Days of Night Movie Poster

I guess this is a nice poster, but I don’t know, I think I was expecting something different from this movie. Something that played with the movie’s premise (vampires in Alaska!) and that managed to showcase the pedigree of the source material.

As it is, this is a good execution of a poster for a very bloody vampire movie. And as that, it’s sure to get the gore hounds riled up. Being a bit of a gore hound myself, I appreciate this. But the poster could be used for pretty much any vampire movie, as it doesn’t really indicate anything distinctive about this film in particular.

I also get the feeling that this is one movie that could have the necessary qualities to reach an audience beyond the core horror lovers. But I don’t think the poster is really selling the film to this broader audience. Maybe the next poster will try to do that?

Halloween Poster

Halloween Poster (Remake)

I don’t really agree with it, but this comment from the Cinema Bland people is just too good not to repeat:

“A guy with a knife. What else do you want?”

Well, I want something to indicate that this will be more than just another unnecessary remake. I want a poster that points out what good things Rob Zombie’s Halloween will have that weren’t in the original film.

Or at least one that says: “It will be just as good as the original, but it will look better!”. Not very exciting, but it would be something.

As it is, the poster does have some interesting elements. Meyer’s apparently isn’t using the mask in it, which I’m guessing is a way of showing that the movie will delve deeper into Michael Meyers, the person, instead of just showcasing the cold, unstoppable assassin persona. The images projected into the mask might be another hint of that. They are a little hard to make out at this resolution, but they might represent a collection of the bad things in Meyer’s that eventually lead him to becoming the masked monster he becomes.

Or I could just be reading way too much into it.

Overall it’s not a bad poster. It prominently uses one iconic image from the original (the mask) but also sets up some original imagery. I don’t really like the color scheme, and I hate the tagline. But it’s not bad.

Of course, it doesn’t come close to the original poster, which is a true classic. But then again, I never expected it too.


Halloween (1978)

Hot Rod Poster

Hot Rod Poster

The only element that really gives it away that this is a comedy is the silly small red cape. Otherwise this a quite beautiful, very understated poster.

I like the poster, and it does make me want to see the movie a little more. But I’m not sure this is the right approach. After all, Andy Samberg isn’t exactly a household name, so the movie might need a more aggressive marketing approach in order to break into peoples consciences.


Macbeth Movie Poster

Macbeth Movie Poster
(click to enlarge)

If it wasn’t for the very recognizable title I wouldn’t have a clue that this was the poster for some sort of Shakespeare adaptation. Instead, I would probably peg it as the poster for some new Horror/Adventure film. Probably one with Vampires. Or Werewolves. Or both.

I wonder what the goal of this poster was. Perhaps it is meant to make the movie seem exciting to the Horror/Adventure crowd, in an attempt to reach a broader audience. After all, there aren’t that many Shakespeare heads out there, and even most of those weren’t going to be that interested in such a modern and violent adaptation of the bards work. But wonder if they aren’t downplaying too much the Shakespeare aspect, since it is one of the main selling points of the film.

Then again, maybe the title is enough for people to make the connection. And I sure as hell don’t know how they could tie the poster better with the original work.

Macbeth opens June 15th