2009 Best Poster Nominees

Posters might be a bit of a relic as far as movie advertising goes, but in some way that’s good, they’re insubstantial enough to the overall campaign that artists sometimes get to do something pretty creative with them.  There will be no movies that simply Photoshop in cast members heads over explosions here.  As with trailers, I’m only allowing posters to movies I’ve seen into this.

  • The Girlfriend Experience:

    Of all the nominated posters, this is probably the one that thinks the furthest outside of the box.  The idea of covering the picture with those… peg board thingies… was a really innovative and neat looking effect.  Then there’s that barcode thing in the corner which I guess represents the way that the main character turner herself into a product, also notice the ® symbol after the title.  Finally there’s the killer tagline- “See it with someone you ****.”
  • The Informant!:

    Ignore that 40-Year-Old Virgin lookalike poster of Damon’s face that ended up being the poster the studio banked on, this one is the real poster to me. First of all, this much better represents the movie’s sense of humor, secondly I think it says something pretty interesting about the character.  He’s a doofus, but he’s the kind of doofus that can actually be a danger to the people running his evil corporation.  Also look at the hands on the shadow, is he just holding them up like a “boo!” of is he actually plugging his ears?
  • In the Loop:

    I’ve already discussed the fealty between the trailers to In The Loop and Dr. Strangelove, but there’s a similar fealty between the two movies’ posters.  The symbolism of the imagery, mixed with the tagline, is beautifully simple and it really accurately represents the absurdity of the stakes.  A note should also be made of some of the other posters involved in the movie’s advertising campaign, a lot of really funny parodies.
  • Precious:

    I do love a good Saul Bass tribute poster and I think this is one of the best ones I’ve seen in a while.  This poster is directly in the lineage of Anatomy of a Murder and Man With a Golden Arm posters, and it’s also able to make the tribute relevant instead of retro.  Most like-minded posters would have been happy to stop at the shattered silhouette, but to make the strategically placed hand the source of the shattering is really sharp.
  • Up in the Air:

    One of my favorite things in the world is when they put a huge star in a movie and then don’t put his face on the poster; it’s a triumph of art over commerce.  This is a good example of finding just the right iconic image from the movie and then exploiting that.  The whole thing really looks stylish, the reflection on the floor is a really nice touch and I didn’t even notice until recently that the two airport patrons next to Clooney were Kendrick and Farmiga.

The Golden Stake goes to…