Movies - Posters posts
Wednesday December 30, 2020
That Hayworth Chicken
In my review of “Strawberry Blonde” I used a color version of the poster even though the film itself is in black and white, and even though this b&w version is way, way fun:
I particularly like the writing. The top tagline indicates Cagney and Warners are still reaping the benefits of Mae Clark's grapefruit kisser 10 years later. “Mauve Decade” I had to look up. It's the 1890s. After William Henry Perkin's aniline dye, apparently.
The wordier stuff on the right also plays off Cagney's gangster rep: racket, mug. My favorite may be “that Hayworth chicken.” Before it was shortened to chick?
Friday August 14, 2020
Kenneth What? Roger Who?
Another newspapers.com find. Never knew I was blurbed in this manner—and between such heavy hitters.
Is my review not up on this site? It isn't. I'll have to fix that. The movie is about a Jewish family escaping Nazi Germany and living out the war in British-held Africa. Kenya, I think. But did I actually say it was “Beautiful!”? Kind of. On the African vistas, I wrote, “...director Caroline Link makes it beautiful without relinquishing its starkness.” No exclamation point but it ain't a lie. It counts. I mean, I didn't think Kenneth and Roger said what they said with exclamation points, either. Never believe exclamation points. They're the province of marketers, bad joke-tellers, and Trump. Sad.
Thursday November 22, 2018
Last Letter Redux
Just putting this up here because I like the feeling this gentle movie left me with. And because I like looking at Zhou Xun.
Thursday October 25, 2018
A Theme is Born
The latest “A Star is Born” has nine screenwriting credits but six of those are from the previous iterations—the based-ons. You know: The ‘76 version by Joan Didion and John Gregory Dunne is based on the ’54 version by Moss Hart which is based on the original by William Wellman and Robert Carson. Some impressive names there.
The recent late adapters also have an impressive name: Eric Roth, who wrote “The Insider,” “Forrest Gump,” and “Munich,” among many others. Then there's director/star Bradley Cooper. Finally, Will Fetters. What is Will Fetters known for? According to IMDb...
I sense a theme.
Saturday June 27, 2015
Movie Poster of the Year
It's Paolo Sorrentino's follow-up to “La Grande Bellezza,” which was Patricia's favorite movie of 2013. It played Cannes and got mostly raves. It's certainly got a great cast. You can see the trailer here.
I'm reminded of the wise old man in Richard Linklater's “Slacker”: “When young, we mourn for one woman... as we grow old, for women in general.” Although, yes, that's hardly a woman in general.
FWIW, Sorrentino is still a young punk of 45 (he was born in May 1970). The movies opens in the U.S. in December.
Friday June 12, 2015
Ant-Man: No Shield. No _______. No Comment.
Marvel has been promoting its new “Ant-Man” movie, opening next month, with posters associating the pint-sized protagonist with the larger-than-life heroes of the Avengers, even though, of course, none of them will be in the movie:
It's a good bit. The posters say things like "No shield. No hammer. No problem.
Then one fan got inventive with an Avenger they inexplicably left off the campaign:
Monday December 03, 2012
New 'Man of Steel' Poster Shows Superman in Handcuffs
Most movies ask, “Does he get the girl?” I keep asking, vis a vis Zack Snyder's “Man of Steel,” “Does he get the curl?” I.e., the famous spit curl in his hair that Superman has sported since at least the 1940s. According to this latest poster, the Man of Steel in handcuffs and in the custody of (I imagine) the U.S. Army, the answer is no. The curl is gone. Bummer.
But it's a good poster. If offers intrigue. It suggests that when Superman shows up with his amazing powers and flies through the air to saves citizens falling from helicopters, most folks aren't going to just start applauding like they're watching a walk-off homerun in a pennant race in September. They're going to be freaked. And the U.S. government isn't going to have a non-response, as they did in “Superman: The Movie.” They'll have this response. (Psst, Republicans. He's also an illegal alien.)
I just hope the movie's smart. Snyder has given us some of the dumbest, darkest, most claustrophobic movies in recent years—“300,” “Watchmen” and the abyssmal “Sucker Punch”—and the legend of Superman deserves better.
Saturday August 11, 2012
Selling the Fright of Pretty Women
Last night, at Pacific Place in downtown Seattle, I came across this triumverate of fall movie posters and got depressed:
And I thought this was the year of the strong, independent woman. Whither Katniss Everdeen?
Ah, there she is, on the right. For a second I thought this Jennifer Lawrence vehicle was some remake of “Last House on the Left” but apparently it's just another ghost story. Its tagline: “Fear reaches out... for the girl next door.”
Last poster on the left? An evil spirit takes over a young girl. Tagline: “Fear The Demon That Doesn't Fear God.” Fear again. The only thing Hollywood has to fear is that fear doesn't sell.
The middle poster is the most disturbing of all for its shot of big-haired helplessness and implied gang rape, but it's basically the same story. Supernatural presence haunts couple after college experiment. Tagline: “Once you believe, you die.”
The dark is coming, Halloween's coming, and it's time to make money off the fright of pretty women. Katniss is for spring.
But they wouldn't sell if we wouldn't buy.
Wednesday October 07, 2009
The Invention of Bad Posters
Take a gander at the U.S. poster for “The Invention of Lying” below.
Who came up with this concept? Gervais is an airbrushed afterthought in it—and after the likes of Rob Lowe and Jennifer Garner—while the overall design reminds me of, I don't know, semi-serious romantic-comedies with multiple actors involved. I can't quite place it. It's not “The Holiday,” it's not “Spanglish” but it's like something, and something not very good.
Plus only one of the three quotes they throw in there is actually in the film—the “baby rat” line. The other two are not only marketing inventions but not funny. Plus the light blue is all wrong. Plus it's too busy. Plus plus plus.
Now here's the version of the poster for Great Britain (below), where they don't have to worry about who knows Ricky Gervais because everyone does. Regardless of what I actually think of the film, this would make me want to see it. I crack up just looking at it: