A character poster for the director of the movie. That is an … interesting approach. Or depending on who actually pushed for it, an interestingly megalomaniacal approach.
It’s true that Von Trier is probably the main attraction in this movie, at least to the movie obsessed audience (as opposed to the “let’s see what’s playing, oh, a movie with Kirsten Dunst, I liked her in Spider-Man!” audience. And oh boy is this particular audience in for a rough time at the movies) . So, it’s not crazy to shine the spotlight on him. But I have followed the guy’s work for some time now, and up until today I had no idea what he looked like, so I’m not sure how much mileage you get from using his face.
I guess It’s probably an alright idea for a series of posters like this.
Looking at the other character posters, I liked the interplay between the “Enjoy It While It Lasts” and the “Melancholia Is Coming” taglines. Only works if you are seeing several of the posters at the same time, but when you do, it carries some punch.
Young Adult is the name of this movie. It is also a lit genre. And the film has as its main character an author (of young adult books? I don’t know). So, inspired by all that, we get a poster that looks like a book cover. Clever idea, and they really went the extra mile here to make it look like a book, to the point where the poster looked slightly off at first to me, until I figured what was going on.
I do wonder if this looks like a cover for a Young Adult book though. I mean, it looks oddly antiquated to me. The emphasis on being a hard cover, the colors and the scratches are particularly jarring. The actual picture inside the cover reads to me a lot more like something you might see in the cover of an YA book, not so much in the details, but in the overall feel.
I guess that without emphasising the hardcover it’s hard to portray book? Not much difference between the cover of a paperback and a movie poster, really. Well, very different traditions and tropes, but nothing that clearly would scream “This is a BOOK!”
Then again, maybe it all ties in into the themes of the film? Maybe the main character (played by Charlize Theron, by the way, who, in a choice that feels true to book covers, doesn’t actually show her face) is getting older but still trying to act like she is young? And this is represented by the worn out hard cover for a Young Adult book? Could be!
As you can probably notice, I’ve thought quite a bit about this poster in the last few days. And because of that I’m much more aware of the film than I was before. Not that there was ever a chance that I wouldn’t go see the movie in theaters, but anyway, maybe it had the same effect in someone who was a more iffy prospect.
So, for context, ‘The Artist’ is a movie about a silent star struggling with the advent of sound, that itself is a black and white silent movie. It was apparently quite the hit in Cannes and will be released in the U.S. in November.
The poster, which is mostly black and white (and silent!) is perfectly evocative of that coolness and glamour we now associate (fairly or not) with the pre-sound period, and clearly marks the film as a high-minded, ‘artistic’ film. It’s not necessarily very evocative of the actual posters that were produced back them, but that doesn’t strike me as very important. This is, after all, a modern film, catering to a modern audience, despite the use of old-fashioned techniques.
This design is, in general terms, fine. Minimalistic and clean. But I would like to raise two objections:
1) I really hate the proliferation of QR codes in posters. I knows, this is a highly personal preference, and it probably marks me as some sort of neo-luddite, out-of-touch, old person, but there it is.
2) Quick, what’s the name of the film? Well, you probably read this post’s title, so you know. But think of this from the perspective of someone encountering just the poster. As a general rule, if you have a somewhat long, somewhat hard to remember name, the last thing you want to do is hide said name by making it seem like a list of actresses that are in the movie.
Of course, I’m ready to admit that the biggest problem here is that the name is awful (from a marketing perspective at least) and that it is very hard to work it into an image. And I sympathize with the poster designer’s wish that the movie was simply called M. But it isn’t, and just giving up doesn’t seem like a good answer.
So Luc Besson is making a movie, called The Lady, about Burmese pro-democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi. A couple of years ago, artist Shepard Fairey made a poster celebrating the real Aung San Suu Kyi, which went on to become somewhat famous. So now the guys behind the film asked him to come up with a version of that poster that they could use to promote the film. The result can be seen above, the original poster is below and a statement from Shepard can be read here.
An obvious choice, but a good one nevertheless. Even if the new poster doesn’t add anything, artistically speaking, to the previous one.
Yes it is a tired design, one we have seen many times. But so are most poster designs this days. This has the merit of being a particularly good execution of a well known design. Harmonious, good balance of colors and the choice of the images that are used of the main characters strikes me as close to perfect. The result is a poster that exudes class and that is, despite the unoriginal design, nice to look at.
I would never call this a great poster. I need more creativity to call something great. In fact, I might need some more creativity to even unambiguously call it good. But it still a reminder that even if you are going for a safe, star centric poster there are many better options than the “classic” floating heads over the horizon look. And a little effort on the execution can make a big difference.
I don’t have a lot to say about this poster for Antichrist, made especially for Fantastic Fest. But I like the style and the dark undertones behind the superficially innocent image, so it seems worth posting.
(Via RowThree and MondoTees)