Friday, October 17, 2008

The Scariest Poster Known to Mankind

During my recent 100 Greatest Movie Posters countdown I included several posters that scared the bejesus out of me - Irriversible, The Birds, Pink Flamingos (teehee, not really) - yet I think I have come across one that trumps those and any others.

In my regular traipsing around of the Internet netherworld I come across many things I never knew existed, and one such thing was the following film poster. I'm not sure how or why I didn't know this poster existed since I had been following - and subsequently posting - all the posters and marketing material that was released for this film. This it a Norwegian piece of key art that was designed by Egil Haraldsen of Exil Design and I found it at Subtitles to Cinema.


Oh sweet baby jesus AAAAAAAAAGGGHH!!

No, seriously! How scary is that shit?! I want to say "I want that on my wall!" but, in all honestly, it would probably frighten me beyond belief everytime I looked at it. Just in case you actually need reminding why this poster is so scary... well... here's the original film screencap that the poster takes it's central image from.

Somebody who has not seen David Lynch's mindbending surreal 3-hour mindfuck experimental horror film INLAND EMPIRE will not be able to properly grasp not only how terrifying this poster is, of even how the image even comes about (even those who have seen the movie probably can't explain the circumstances between the terrifying screaming face sequence that appears randomly and without logic). But the idea of putting it on a poster is almost brilliantly insane. I guess if you're trying to attract people in the mood for something odd and scary-looking then it's a good moment from the film to use on a piece of key art, no? It sort of just proves a striking, startling and all-too creepy image to place on a poster.

I watched the documentary Lynch (one) this past week, which follows Lynch as he goes about making INLAND EMPIRE (it will apparently be followed by two more parts titled Lynch (two) and Lynch (three), natch) and it made me really want to rewatch this amazing piece of cinema, something I haven't done since seeing it at MIFF over a year ago. I need to relive the scary face moment (all of them, since this is a Lynch movie starring Laura Dern it is a given that she appears with all sorts of crazy expressions on her face at various points in the movie), I want to relive that terrifying moment on the movie backlot and the entire surreal third act set on Hollywood's Sunset Boulevard. And so on.

To quote Randy (Jamie Kennedy) in Scream 2 - "Absolutely terrifying!"

And, just for comparison sakes, here are the other INLAND EMPIRE posters that were released.


Dame James Henry said...

Without having the benefit of seeing "the face" in the context of INLAND EMPIRE I still totally agree that this poster is f-ing scary. That snarl is just so uncomfortable to look at.

leah said...

david lynch, you beauty!

Syms Covington said...

Having not seen the film, I do think it's scary, but more in a "my god she's ugly" kind of funny way.

I saw Funny Games remake on the weekend though and it's interesting, I first did not like that poster, but now think it's almost perfect. Michael Pitt smiling into camera would have been another good version.

Karsten said...

Hi Glenn --

Fun to see that you discovered this through my site. Makes blogging worth it.

Fyi; Egil Haraldsen, the artist behind the poster, is a legendary Norwegian graphic designer, who has been doing outstanding work for film distributor Arthaus for over 15 years. You'll find more of his work on Exil Design's site.

True, seeing this again also makes me want to re-visit "Inland Empire" eventhough I've seen it twice already. More to discover in that film, I'm sure.

Best regards,