Sunday, December 23, 2012

Best Movie Posters of 2012

There's a lot of movie watching and writing I want to do. Soon. But now it's time for family. So let's continue this other holiday season tradition with a look back at my favorite movie posters of the year.

My introduction from last year's post still applies:

What do I look for in a movie poster? In general, I like a striking image that stands out in the lineup at the multiplex while evoking the film's themes. The best movie posters ingrain themselves within our memories of the films themselves, so that to think ofJaws, for example, is to think of that image of the giant shark swimming upward toward the helpless swimmer. Of course, that means that sometimes how we feel about a movie poster is directly tied to how we feel about a film, and an image that might otherwise be pedestrian takes on greater meaning retroactively, or a compelling image is made to feel trite because the movie turns out to be.

It's a short list for me this year. Take a look and tell me: what are your favorite posters of the year, and what did I get horribly wrong?


Sam Juliano said...

My favorite of the ones you have posted is the one for ROOM 237. A real eye-catcher! LES MIS is one that couldn't miss, and I really like THE TURIN HORSE, AMOUR and THE LIFE OF PI.

Odlly enough, ZERO DARK THIRTY, one of the greatest films of the year, offered up a rather abstract collage poster that disappointed, while LINCOLN and ARGO were pedestrian. Some others that worked as posters taking in your rightful criteria were:

Anna Karaenina
The Dark Knight Rises
Beasts of the Southern Wild
Moonrise Kingdom

In any case you've posted an excellent lot here.

Happy Holidays to you and yours!

Craig said...

Can't argue with any of your choices this year, even if a couple of them aren't the main poster used for promotion (e.g., The Master, Killing Them Softly). I agree with Sam on Moonrise Kingdom, a poster seemingly designed to pre-empt Criterion from creating one of their own.

Jason Bellamy said...

Thanks for weighing in, fellas.

Sam & Craig: I ALMOST went with ANNA KARENINA and MOONRISE KINGDOM. I thought both worked better in retrospect, triggering memories of what I loved about those movies. But something about both seemed overly busy, and -- as my choices suggest -- I tend to be drawn to simple, bold striking images. So I suppose I'm saying: they're good posters, but I wouldn't put them on my wall. (Craig: That's a great point ... where will Criterion go for MOONRISE KINGDOM now?)

BEASTS is an interesting one: I puzzled over that poster for a weeks before the movie was released. Even then, I couldn't decide if the poster compelled me to see the film or put me off. I might have included it above if it didn't turn out to be an image from the film that is both beautiful and yet utterly pointless.

Overall, and uninspiring year for posters. But that's kind of the way I feel about the year in film, too. (Note: Haven't seen THE TURIN HORSE, AMOUR and several others yet.)