The marketing pitch for The Happenning has been pretty clear from the get go. Creepy horror movie in which everybody dies mysteriously, leaving only a few people to deal with the aftermath. It’s not an exactly an unique premise, but it is one that has given us some strong stories, and it’s good hook to sell a film with.
Today we have two posters for The Happening that reinforce that sell. The one above comes from Germany and it’s tightly connected to the imagery in the trailer. It’s also rather bloody, even tough no blood is actually shown. Instead of conveying the widespread plague by showing us empty streets it actually shows the bodies. That is a little unusual, and I think it makes for an upsetting image that manages to stand out.
I do think, however, that the tight focus of the image, covering just a small portion of a park, takes away from some of the epic scope we have seen in other materials. From what we can see this could have easily been a minor disaster and not a world annihilating cataclysm.
Then we have a polish poster that is at the same time more and less usual.
The usual part is, of course, showing the barren streets of a big city, with just our heroes in the middle of it. Not that different from what we have seen in the marketing for I Am legend, although Smith was considerably more at ease in the posters for that film.
The unusual part is the distortion of the image and all the paper flying around. So unusual that I’m wondering if it has some hidden meaning that is related to the story.
The unusual side of this poster makes it stand out, but not in a good way. Catching people’s attention by being weird is not conductive to convincing them to see your movie.
One interesting aspect of the poster is that it is the first one to focus clearly on there being a family at the center of the nightmare. It’s also the first to show Wahlberg. I have to say that the absence of these two aspects so far has been surprising, but not particularly bothersome.
(Thanks to Casty the Clown for these)