Friday, December 11, 2009

Weekly Top Tens: The Worst Movie Posters of 2009

When movie posters go bad, they can hurt the marketing of the movie. These 10 posters are not necessarily awful or difficult to look at, as much as they are incredibly lazy. I mean really, you have one image to sell your movie on, and these are what they came up with? What’s worse is that some of these movies are actually quite good.

10. The Road
This is more an issue of taste for me, but I do think that a poster needs to sell the movie you have. And this one does not. The Road is an incredibly dark movie, both in terms of its themes, as well as the visual look of the film. So when I saw this poster, I was struck by how incredibly bright it was. The flames in the background, which aren’t really in the movie, make this whole poster look strange. The blurry rain doesn’t help either. The lazy tagline, in big block letters doesn’t help either. On the whole, this isn’t a god-awful poster, but it’s one that bothers me to no end.

9. Avatar
I have a pet peeve about floating, disembodied heads on posters. I hate them. Plus, I’m not sure why they fore grounded Sam Worthington, considering he’s not really a huge star and he has rather generic looks. The cheesy moon/sun in the background is also just lazy, and the smaller picture of the No’vi riding that flying animal is not all that exciting. This poster is trying too hard to call to mind Star Wars posters of the past, and it fails. Miserably. Still can’t wait to see the movie though, which is getting amazing reviews.

8. The International
I’m at a loss to try and explain why they felt the need to go with this poster – which makes utterly no sense until you see the movie and the wonderful shootout at the Guggenheim, with its huge spiral staircase that seems to be the main selling feature of this poster. You have two of the most photogenic people in Hollywood in your movie – Clive Owen and Naomi Watts – and you stick them down in the corner? The needlessly wordy tagline doesn’t really help things out either. Just a flat out poor idea.

7. Post Grad
This poster, for a movie I did not see, strikes me as incredibly lazy. The beautiful Alexis Bledel should make any poster worth looking at, but here she has that incredibly phony smile plastered on her face, and she looks incredibly airbrushed. The lazy font choice and the even lazier tag line do not help matter at all. I hate the bright red running shoes, which I know is supposed to create a contrast, but it doesn’t work. Is Bledel supposed to be an idiot in this movie? Why doesn’t she notice all her crap falling out? Just pure laziness on this one.

6. The Fourth Kind
Like the movie this poster is for, it is far too busy to be effective. Four different, extremely blurry pictures - the color scheme of blue certainly does not help – and after detailed study, I still have clue what the third image is supposed to be. Way too many words on the poster to try and explain what the hell the title means. The Based on Actual Case Studies line bothers me too, not because it’s a crock of shit so much, but that the font doesn’t fit in with the rest of the poster. Overall they simply tried to do too much here.

5. Everybody’s Fine
It’s the laziness of this poster that gets to me. The generic cast photo standing, all smiles (although I’m not sure anyone smiles in the movie), the cheesy Christmas tree in the background, the hand that obviously does not belong to DeNiro holding the camera (and why, so we can see these people smile twice in one poster?), the font choice, with the big, exaggerated E, it is all lazy and cheesy. And why does the poster need to advertise that there is a song in the movie by Paul McCartney is such big words? Is this selling the movie, or the fricking soundtrack?

4. Love Happens
Seriously, what the hell is up with all the white in this poster? Why do you let essentially white paper dominate 60% of your poster, well only including a little strip of a photo in the middle? I didn’t like it when Revolutionary Road did it last year, and I like this one even less. And while I’m talking about the picture, couldn’t they have found a better one than two 40 somethings looking at each other like teenagers? Lazy.

3. Whiteout
Kate Beckinsale is even more beautiful than Megan Fox, yet the close-up of her face used for this poster is nowhere near as sexy it Fox’s on the Jennifer’s Body poster. She looks like a ghost with bad skin. Her gorgeous blue eyes are turned vacant and cold, instead of their usual glow of intelligence. She looks stunned in this poster. How they can defend the fact that they have one of the most gorgeous women on the planet as the lead in their movie, and they turned into such a horrible poster is beyond me.

2. Spinning Into Butter
Is it any wonder that no one went to see this damn movie with a poster this artlessly constructed? Sarah Jessica Parker looks completely and totally stunned in this picture – as if she’s playing some sort mentally challenged individual instead of a college professor. You cannot tell if the actor behind her is angry or simply bored. The broken glass is so perfectly, cleanly fractured that it calls attention to itself, and the painting in the background is meaningless since we have no idea who it is. Could they have possibly come up with a cheesier tagline than “Nothing is as simple as black and white”? There is a reason why some movie never break out.

1. Amelia
This has got to rank among the cheesiest movie posters I have ever seen. I much prefer the original design, which was much darker, and just featured the back of Swank that is included at the bottom of this poster. But by adding the cheesy floating heads of Swank and Gere, trying to sell this bomb as some sort of grand love story, makes this poster egregious. When the hell was this picture of Gere taken anyway, since he’s had gray hair since the 1980s? The smatlzy look on their faces if horrendous and nauseating and the whole thing in entirely too bright. Add to that the poster felt the need to add not one, but two, unnecessary taglines. Words cannot describe how much I hate this poster.

1 comment:

  1. "Spinning Into Butter" I found it one of the stupidest titles. I have ever heard.