Let me hit you with a summary:
Two-time Academy Award nominee® (Two Times!) Ethan Hawke plays Edward Dalton, a researcher in the year 2019, in which an unknown plague has transformed the world’s population into vampires. As the human population nears extinction, vampires must capture and farm every remaining human, or find a blood substitute before time runs out. However, a covert group of vampires makes a remarkable discovery, one which has the power to save the human race.
Doesn’t sound that promising, or original, does it? Not that you couldn’t start from that and make a great movie, maybe even one that touches on profound moral questions, but considering history it doesn’t seem all that likely. And that red thing you see above doesn’t exactly make this bad feeling go away, does it? Although I should point out that the movie doesn’t come out until 2010, so this is a very early teaser poster, maybe others will more ably indicate the qualities of the movie.
Vampires strike me as a hard sell these days. Red blood, white fangs, monsters and supernaturally charming figures. Pick and choose a couple (or all) of these elements, mix them together and there you have your poster, trailer or whatever. It hardly ever escapes from those things and after all these decades of vampires it feels kind of stale.
But if you want to be different, what do you do? How do you run from these things and still market vampires? How do you capture the appeal of these creatures but still make it seem fresh? Honestly, I myself don’t know.
Sang-hyun (played by top Korean star Song Kang-ho, of The Host) is a priest who cherishes life; so much so, that he selflessly volunteers for a secret vaccine development project meant to eradicate a deadly virus. But the virus takes the priest, and a blood transfusion is urgently ordered up for him. The blood he receives is infected, so Sang-hyun lives – but now exists as a vampire. Struggling with his newfound carnal desire for blood, Sang-hyun’s faith is further strained when a childhood friend’s wife, Tae-ju (Kim Ok-vin), comes to him asking for his help in escaping her life. Sang-hyun soon plunges into a world of sensual pleasures, finding himself on intimate terms with the Seven Deadly Sins.
If this wasn’t directed by Park Chan-wook I would have no interest. But it is! So at the least it should be gory, weird and unique.
Both of the posters we see here hide the gore, but still keep the weird. Obviously, the domestic version is significantly tamer, although not exactly tame. It is also feels a little more balanced and less awkward. Whether this is a plus or a minus when it comes to the promotion of this film is hard to say, obviously they are trying to make something that stands out while still maintaining a certain veneer of restraint and seriousness. Tough balance to obtain.
Interesting that they decided to do away with some of the cleavage, isn’t it? Didn’t strike me as all that raunchy, considering the kind of stuff we see nowadays. But I guess they felt it detracted from the overall tone of the poster. Or something like that.
The above is the recently released domestic poster for the animation 9. It’s a bit darker than the Russian poster, and has more of a sci-fi/action vibe to it. I mean, “When our world ended, their mission began”?, what is this, Terminator?
The visual style still shines clearly, but I think some of the whimsy that made the last poster so attractive is gone. Not sure I love it.
And since we are talking about nines, a reader points out in comments this poster:
This is for the Thai horror 9.
Also in comments Glenn reminds us of this film from late last year.
Must be something in the air…
I just can’t resist this 80’s drenched poster for The Stepfather. Is the whole thing (tagline, premise and image) widely over the top and more than a little ridiculous? Sure! That’s why it’s fun!
The Stepfather is, of course, a remake of a same titled movie from 1987, which had a pretty interesting poster too:
The funny thing is that poster actually feels less of its time than the poster for the remake. The poster for The Spetfather II, on the other hand, is pure 80’s.
A screaming woman. A very literal interpretation of the title. Fake looking flames.
Are they trying to piss me off?
The thing is, despite all that, this is actually pretty close to being an ok poster. But some execution details, like the flames, just keep it a little below that.
Anyway, Sam Raimi’s horror posters used to be much better.
(Via ShockTillYouDrop and IMPAwards)
Screaming women are a staple of horror posters. I guess there is nothing that conveys fear and helpless terror as well as a poor defenseless lady with an open mouth and closed eyes. Or so the marketers think.
It’s really not something that I particularly appreciate, but I’ve learned to tolerate it. However this one is bugging me.
Honestly, it’s a minor issue in this poster. The screaming is quite confined and doesn’t really harm the poster significantly. But it’s so unnecessary! The poster is fine without it, and the metal skull is much more distinctive than a screaming, red-tinted woman. And yet, there she is. Because otherwise we might not know this was a horror movie. Or something.
(Via The Sarah Connor Society and IMPAwards)
There is certain liberty one gets when allowed to cater just to the core audience for a film that can lead to very interesting things. This Wondercom poster for Pandorum is an example. Unencumbered by the necessity of showing the star (Dennis Quaid) or telling the story to a unsuspecting audience it is allowed t be just … weird.
Pandorum takes us a to a spaceship where a pair of crew members wake up with no knowledge of their mission or their identities. Or so IMDb tells me. So the poster isn’t completely disconnected from the story of the film. It just isn’t interested in talking about it in a straightforward manner. That won’t hold for final posters, of course. But for now I’m enjoying the weirdness.
(Via Bloody-Disgusting and IMPAwards)