When I first saw this poster I was immediately reminded of the poster for The Squid and the Whale, for what I think are fairly obvious reasons.
Despite the similarities I think that the poster for The Squid and the Whale is much better. It’s sharper and has a cleaner look. It also does a better job of getting us interested in the interaction between the characters.
The main characters in Dedication are a kid’s book writer and his illustrator. So the use of drawings make sense. But the drawings themselves don’t actually seem to tell us anything about the movie, so the main effect of their use is to give the image a more unique and cutesy look, which seems like a lost opportunity.
Beyond that we have a picture of the two characters sitting together. Their positioning, clothes and interaction scream indie rom-com to me, for some reason. I would have preferred to see a picture that made the relationship between the two characters seem more interesting and that tried to differentiate it from the thousands of other rom-coms out there, but this is not a particularly bad picture.
Via WorstPreviews we have a ComicCon exclusive poster for Death Sentence. And it is indeed better than the original Death Sentence poster. At least in this one we get a better sense of the main character. The fact that he is under great stress and that he is having some very violent encounters is quite obvious.
Also obvious is the comic book influences in the poster’s image. It’s quite reminiscent of the Sin City artwork, something that should be very obvious to people attending ComicCon. I wonder what the reaction to that will be? Will it be “Cool, it’s like the Sin City”? Or “Lame, it’s a ripoff of Sin City”? I’m not sure, but I do think that the overall reaction will be more positive than the one the original poster would have garnered.
Thanks to Andrew for the tip.
I was very impressed by the trailer for The Spiderwick Chronicles. It made the movie seem a lot more interesting and a little darker than I expected. In fact, it made me think that there is a chance I might actually enjoy the movie.
This poster, on the other hand, reminds me of why I used to be completely uninterested in the film.
Which is not at all to say that it’s a bad poster. It’s a nice teaser poster. The blurry and weirdly colored forest, together with the tagline, make it pretty clear that this movie involves some sort of parallel and probably magical universe. And the kid at the center, cautiously entering the forest, seems to indicate that this will be a “child stumbles upon a fantasy world” film, in the style of Narnia, which is sure to get some people interested. And the overall look is unique enough to be memorable. Hopefully the final poster will reveal many other fantastic elements not shown currently, but you can’t show everything in the teaser.
But the poster, with it’s bright colors, forest setting and highlighted child star, does make the movie seem very light and kid friendly. Which is why I assumed I wouldn’t be interested in it. The poster seems to set the movie as something that is of interest strictly for children and young teens. Nothing wrong with that. The big fantasy movies (Narnia, LotR, Potter) derived much of their success from the ability to appeal to older teens and adults, but that doesn’t mean that Spiderwick has to go for similarly broad appeal.
I do wonder whether people, including kids, might be getting tired of all the fantasy movies staring children. We have had many of them, there is a bunch of others that will open this year and yet another bunch that is being announced. With all those similar films hitting the theaters, standing out might get a lot harder, which means that the marketing material (including posters) is going to have to become more creative.
Things are a little slow in the new posters front today, so instead of commenting on a poster I don’t have much interest in, I decided to revisit one of my all time favorites.
What I find funny about this poster is that Jaws, the movie, is famous for hiding the shark throughout most of the film. Meanwhile, here we have the poster, and it gives us a good look at the shark, including its infamous jaws, and even makes it a focal point of the whole image.
Two very different approaches, and they both work tremendously. After all, Jaws was a major blockbuster in its time, and it remains a classic. Meanwhile, the poster is one of the best well known and most beloved posters in film history. Pretty much anybody can recognize that image, even people who haven’t ever seen the film.
And the poster is not only very memorable by itself, it also does a great job of selling the movie. I remember seeing that image as a kid, a while before seeing the movie. It was enough to give me quite a few nightmares, but it also fascinated me, because it did such a good job of portraying the basic premise of the movie, and the reason why that premise was so scary. One poor swimmer, completely unaware of the danger her life is in. Poor thing. I immediately feared for her, and I also wanted very much to know what happened next. Did she manage to escape somehow? Or did the shark get her?
Just an amazing poster.
(click for a larger version)
Have I mentioned that I dislike these types of posters where some huge text takes most of the space? I guess I have. Well, this one is no different.
Posters are really better at showing than at telling. Sure, a well placed tagline can do wonders, but those mostly work when there is already something interesting in the image to grab your attention. In the case of this poster I had too look at it several times before my brain actually registered what the text was saying. And even then, it didn’t make much of an impact.
Overall, not a very effective poster.
Here is the new poster for giant killer croc movie Rogue. As other people have pointed out, it’s very reminiscent of posters from other movies, especially the poster for Jaws. Then again, most giant croc movies follow the Jaws formula, so at least this poster doesn’t try to pretend otherwise. The poster also doesn’t follow the huge open mandible covering most of the image convention that we can see in the posters below for Lake Placid and Primeval, which is probably a good thing.
All that said, it’s still not a very good poster.
Via Cinematical we have the new poster for The Golden Compass, and four new character posters which are basically blown up versions of parts of the main poster.
The main poster really has a little something for everybody. We have Daniel Craig for the Bond fans and for the ladies. We have Kidman for the Kidman fans and for the crowd that tends to like some more serious movies. We have a girl in the back of a bear for the kids. And we have several fantasy elements for the people who liked Lord of the Rings and Narnia.
And yet, I’m not blown away by the poster. All of these elements are nice by themselves, but in isolation aren’t exactly awe inspiring. And the way the poster puts them together doesn’t make them amount to anything more than they already amount to in separation.
I have not seen anything from this movie so far that makes me think that it will be something impressive that simply must be seen. Narnia, Potter and LotR upped the ante significantly for Fantasy films. And The Golden Compass doesn’t have the advantage of a huge amount of book fans that will drive the movie to success no matter what. So, unless they can come up with some more impressive marketing material, I’m afraid the movie might under perform.
Of course, if the film turns out to be really great the marketing won’t matter so much. But if that is the case, they really should be able to come up with more interesting trailers and posters.