Tuesday, December 18, 2007

100 Greatest Movie Posters: #65 - 2001: A Space Odyssey

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
Directed by Stanley Kubrick
Unknown Designer
Film Nationality - UK/USA
Poster Nationality - USA (1970 ReRelease)

[click to enlarge]

Using the famous "Starchild" image is both risky and safe, so much so that is possibly the image most representative of Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey. On the "risky" side it represents nothing about the film's science-fiction mould and doesn't clue you in to what the film is about. "A sci-fi movie about babies? No thanks!" Yet, on the safe side it presents to audiences the familiar and doesn't bombard them with images of acid-trip light parades, mysterious obilisks and whatever other things that movie has going on that I don't pretend to understand.

So, which do I think it is more? I'd say risky - but that it is both, in my eyes, shows how good of a poster it is. That they chose the simple image of a baby shows incredible smarts. The baby represents life. It represents future. It represents the unknown. And, of course, if the life we lead from the moment we're born to the moment we die can be perceived as "the ultimate trip" what else can?


qnz#1blogger said...

Man you ned to start a class on this stuff. I would've never interpreted the poster that way. It makes a lot of sense. is this like your obsession?

jsn.dlc said...

weak. do some research. Information is more valuable to people than your own subjective response. When 2001 first came out attendance was really poor. But there was a cult following of hippie folk that would go see the movie on psychedelics. The 'Ultimate trip' posters was a marketing response to this trend - it was a way of exploiting the movie's psychedelic appeal in order to increase theatre attendance.