2010 Best Poster Nominees

I do love posters even if posters don’t always love me.  All too often studios will go for simplistic designs with actor’s faces photoshopped in over an explosion, but some good ones still come out and it’s always cool when they do.  As with all advertising categories, I’m only nominating material from movies that I’ve seen so that I can fully assess how well it represents its respective film.

  • Blue Valentine:
    While many of the posters I’ll nominate here thrive on some very clever design, this one thrives on minimalism.  The poster is sexy and passionate but in sort of a dangerous, Sid and Nancy kind of way.  Even the tagline (a love story) is minimalistic, and so is the seemingly had written title.  Sometimes all the design in the world is unneeded if you just have the perfect image you need.
  • Buried:
    How do you make a movie about a guy in a box?  A lot of ways apparently, Buried actually has a number of good posters.  This one is my favorite because it takes an element that’s often intrusive (critics quotes) and turns them into an artistic element.  This text, including the title and release date, form a “Vertigo”-like spiral signifying the protagonist’s desperation.
  • Daybreakers:
    So you’re making a proper vampire movie with a handful of name celebrities, what’s the easiest thing to put on a poster?  A bunch of celebrities with fangs.  They would do that eventually, but for this teaser poster they instead sold the much more interesting concept at the core of the film: a blood factory.  It’s a little derivative of The Matrix, but it is still a pretty stark image to put up on a wall.
  • Exit Through the Gift Shop:
    As a rule of thumb, I don’t include documentaries in most of these awards.  It’s not out of a disrespect for non-fiction filmmaking, just a belief that they have very different goals from fictional narrative films and that they can’t be compared easily.  However, because this award is all about something that is external to the films themselves I see no reason not to include them here. This is a particularly cool piece that incorporates both street art and conveys the film’s themes of commercialism’s bastardization of art.
  • Inception:

    What I like about this poster is the way it manages to capture a number of the key elements of Inception (a movie that isn’t easy to sum up) into a single image.  You’ve got the immense architecture, a stylishly dressed man, a hint of action in that the man is holding a pistol, and then the water he’s standing in which gives the whole thing a dream-like quality.  It also keeps DiCaprio’s back to the camera, and I always like it when they keep the star’s face out of these.

The Golden Stake goes to…