I was an immediate fan of Zhang Ke Jia's Still Life when I saw it at the Melbourne International Film Festival two years back, and while I didn't like his fashion industry documentary Useless, which screened at MIFF last year, I still reckon the man in insanely talented. One film I unfortunately did not get the chance to see at MIFF when it screened last year was 24 City. Scheduling conflicts are tricky to negotiate at film festivals and that film was an unfortunate scenario. Alas, it's getting an international release so maybe - just maybe - I will be able to see it soon (although Still Life has yet to emerge on DVD in Australia much to my chagrin.)
I really like this poster. It's striking and visually inventive. I imagine Michel Gondry is looking at it right now and feverishly waxing lyrical about it to the man who lives under his staircase. I also like the neat touch of having the obligatory festival quote being done in a way that fits the poster and not just thrown on there willy nilly (we'll get to that in a second).
One of the very best movies I saw last year was Matthew Newton's Three Blind Mice. It's being released sometime soon-ish in the first half of 2009 (so it will be eligible for the 2009 UMA Awards, not the 2008) and it can't come soon enough. I've been sitting on this piece of key art for a while, waiting for a better version to become available. I first noticed it in British quad format (bless the British quad format) and when it did eventually get made into a traditional poster size I could only find the smallest of sizes.
Saul Bass immitations are becoming more common and I like this one a lot, but what truly makes the poster is the above-title credits. Interesting twist on the cliche, and since the actors in the movie aren't entirely household names that can sell movies, why not try it? It works well to do what the designers here have done and used "the LOVER", "the GAMBLER" and "the TRAITOR". It fits perfectly with the image of three sailors and gives you an insight into what it's all about. Sure, I could've done without those pesky pull quotes but for a film such as this they are indeed a necessary evil.
This film is screening On Demand in the US to coincide with it's SXSW premiere so go watch it!
I have no idea what my next selection is, which is exactly why I chose it. Jim Jarmusch's new film is apparently called The Limits of Control. I didn't even know he had one coming out.
As I said I have no idea what this movie is or if this poster even appears to have any connection to the film whatsoever, but upon setting eyes on it I was immediately intrigued and immediately wanted to read up on it. Sure, some of that may have had to do with that glorious-looking cast list (hello Tilda Swinton!) but also because I just generally quite like the design. It makes me smile for some reason.
And now, sadly, we come to a dreadful piece of poster work. A piece of key art design that my retinas will not forgive me for for a very long time. I present to you Post Grad starring that chick from Gilmore Girls!
I'm not even going to mention the hideous background colour that doesn't fit with any of the other colour choices that have been made. I'm also going to forget the laziness that the whole thing reeks of up to and including the title font and the stupid tag-line "A Pre-Life Crisis". What is she? Depressed in the womb? No, the main reason it is so incredibly terrible is this:
That shade of lipstick does not match her skin tone. And, even further, the entire make-up job that they gave her is hideous. That doesn't even look like her own skin, let alone the sort of image you want to put forth on your movie poster. She looks like a cheap French whore done up by the village blind person. Except even a blind person probably even knows when they've put on too much make-up so as to look like you have hypothermia.