Curating a list of bad posters is, I think, infinitely harder than making one for good posters. When you're good, you're good, and that's no matter your film's genre, budget or any other mitigating circumstances. Bad posters however... well, I feel like I have to take certain things into consideration. It feels particularly meanspirited to rub it in to a movie that barely got an advertising campaign because the distributor had no money to do so, especially when there is mainstream, Hollywood, studio dreck that somehow gets an escalating series of putrid posters. Still, bad posters are bad posters and I think this list balances that out. There are films on the list that found their entire marketing campaigns coming under scrutiny - two films occupy six spots in the top ten! - whilst there are films with posters listed below that also had entries in the best of the year list, which kinda goes to show how off base marketers can be from time to time. The below list is made up of a lot of terrible Photoshop, ugly colours, ludicrous concepts, bizarro world foreign designs, local Australian dogs, ill-conceived visuals and my traditional arch nemesis' stripes. Alas, the giant floating heads in the sky appeared to take a year off in 2011 so that one was one silver lining, yeah?
49. The Cup
48. The Three Musketeers
47. Source Code
45. The Green Lantern
44. J. Edgar
43. The Dilemma
42. The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1
39. The Descendants
38. Martha Marcy May Marlene
37. The Tree of Life
36. Bucky Larson: Born to be a Star
35. Jack and Jill
34. Scream 4
33. The Iron Lady
32. Dream House
31. Soul Surfer
29. The Darkest Hour
28. Big Mamma's Boy
27. Return to Zero
26. Don't Be Afraid of the Dark
25. The Rite
24. Justin Bieber: Never Say Never
22. Straw Dogs
20. I Don't Know How She Does It
For its putrid green and bizarre text: However does she find the time to "check email", "vacuum the rug" and "repair shoes"? :/
19. The Triangle Wars
For being an amateur poster of an amateur film.
18. Source Code
For being an iPad commercial for a sci-fi film. For the Photoshop.
17. New Year's Eve
For the golden laziness. For the champagne flutes as characters. For the teeth-decaying sweetness.
16. Something Borrowed
For the ZZZzzzz
15. The Rum Diary
For making Johnny Depp look positively repulsive. For the bizarre Hangover rip-off.
14. Salvation Boulevard
For the I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT THE HELL THIS IS!
13. A Dangerous Method
For the yikes factor. For turning the sublime transparent white version into a hard-edged, awfully Photoshopped mess.
12. The Mighty Macs
For being HILARIOUS! For being even worse than this design, which simultaneously looks like Jennifer Garner, Hilary Swank, Elisabeth Shue, Kyra Sedgwick and Teri Hatcher before it does Carla Gugino.
11. The Sitter
For the blatant sexism. For being unpleasant.
10. Big Mommas: Like Father Like Son
For the endless wedgie joke. Doubled. For being really, really stupid (why does the son have a framed photo of himself in his bag?) For the weird skinny legs.
9. Atlas Shrugged
For looking like clip art. From Word 2007.
8. And They're off
For having to be on drugs to understand it. For Sean Astin leaning up against a horse's arse. For flipping the names of the actors despite this hardly being a case of "I am Sean Astin, I must be billed first" kinda situation.
7. X-Men: First Class
For the bobblehead syndrome and the afterworld effect.
6. Barney's Version
For looking an assortment of cardboard standees haphazardly arranged. For the screepy Scott Speedman looking at me and yet not...
5. Big Mamma's: Like Father Like Son
For that "wtf?" look on Brandon T Jackson's face. For the golden seal of approval that, even though I can't read it, makes me giggle in a bad way.
4. Quarantine 2: Terminal
For looking like a melted wax statue of Laura Dern. For that vile colour scheme.
3. Big Mommas: Like Father Like Son
For being THE HORROR! OH GAWD, THE HORROR!!! The French are fucked up, y'all.
2. X-Men: First Class
For being a 0_0 of a design/concept/creation. What is this? How did this get the greenlight for a major motion picture? How?
1. X-Men: First Class
For being even worse than the one above. For sticking James McAvoy's face in the silhouette of a wheelchair-bound man's crotch. For looking like a joke and looking like even a kid would reject it. For being the worst of 2011.
What say you, dear readers? Did I forget a truly disastrous eyesore of a poster or do you think I got it pretty spot on? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter.