Tuesday, September 6, 2011

From Ghana to Mexico: Movie Art from Around the World

Okay, so I'm only looking at Mexico and Ghana, but so what of it? The internet is there for a reason. If you wanna look at posters from Bolivia I am sure there's a place to do it. Or maybe not. Does anyone know? Now that I've broached the idea of it, I am kinda intrigued by how Bolivia would sell The Help.

I've mentioned many times that I don't have the same high opinion of the Czech and Polish poster designs that most of the internet does. For every great one like The Birds or Blue Velvet there is another that just gives me a headache. I am of the staunch opinion that a film poster should first and foremost be selling a film, and not be used as some artists canvas to throw a bunch of non sequitur images around and say "duh! it's a poster for Sparticus!" Having come across these glorious pieces of imagery from Mexico (classy, glamourous, old-school divinity) and Ghana (ridiculous, hand-painted, bonkers) I felt the need to share.

Beginning with Mexico, 50 Watts gave us the viewing pleasure of this gorgeous works of key art from the 1940s and 1950s (taken from this far more extensive collection of Mexican and Cuban artwork). They feature vivid strikes of colour amidst delicate plays of light, like that of El Tren Expreso (1955). Striking bold imagery like the one found in Alfredo Crevenna's Muchachas de Uniforme (1951) and Emilio Fernández's La Red (Rosanna, 1953) are so in your face and provocative that they scream for audiences to pay attention. Casa de Perdicion (House of Perdition, 1956), up top, of a woman wearing a transparent gown covered in red chilies is both a seductive tease and a flashy deceleration of intention. Others, such as the Alberto Gout's La Sospechosa (1955), owe obvious debts to Hitchcock and film-noir.

Do check out the rest, they're fabulous.

Fabulous may be a word to also describe the posters from Ghana, although I think it's connotations are a bit different. I can't say these posters are "good", but they sure are entertaining to look at! Awesome Robo collated 70 of them and they are a hoot to scan through. My personal favourites are the one for Don E. FauntLeRoy's (whatta name!) Anaconda 3: Offspring featuring a snake that breathes fire; James D.R. Hickox's Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest that brings all new meaning to the idea of giant floating head posters; Lewis Teague's Cujo that somehow transforms Dee Wallace into a geisha and Cujo himself for a blood-splattered bloodhound canine (so, apt); Rob Bowman's Elektra that somehow transforms Jennifer Garner in Michael Myers; John Woo's Mission Impossible 2 that somehow transforms Tom Cruise into Michael Myers; Ronny Yu's Freddy vs Jason that somehow transforms Freddy Kruger into a who knows what!

I think my favourite of all, however, is the one for Steve Beck's Ghost Ship, which just throws about a bunch of severed body parts in front of an ocean liner. Amazing.

They're all rather hilarious so do check them out. Do you have a favourite?

1 comment:

iggy said...

Indeed, they are hilarious. My favourites are Catwoman, the one where Halle Berry becomes Holy Golightly in catsuit about to rob Tiffanys, I suppose; Planet Terror, the one with a blonde Rose McGowan firing the guns with her crotch?; and finally, The Fierce Ghost Eats Human Region which if it isn't a title for Interview with the Vampire, it should be, lol.