Even though trailers have become the hottest way to display a new upcoming film, before the internet boomed posters used to take that role. Plastered across movie theater walls, they had to encapsulate the essence of a movie in a single, beautiful, wordless frame. The posters were an artform all on their own.
Movie posters aren’t as drooled over as before, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t still some damn some beautiful ones. After all, the John Wick 3 poster has completely floored fans.
With such a beautiful image on the tips of our brains and fluttering our hearts, let’s take a look back at other posters that give wonderful eyegasms and other artistic feels to anyone who sees them.
Some of these designs have inspired and impressed for decades; prepare for some serious optical pleasure.
John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019)
Art director and illustrator Billelis recently published their stunning designs for John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parrabellum (Billelis 💀). In their poster design John Wick (Keanu Reeves) features as a neon-soaked angel of death against a stylish background of weaponry and gothic ornamentation, and the effect is truly beautiful:
Designed by Roger Kastel (rogerkastel.com) for Speilberg’s Jaws, this is probably one of the most iconic movie posters ever created. Over 40 years later the image of this monstrous shark emerging from the depths still evokes a thrill – and instantly puts me off any future swimming engagements…
Beauty and the Beast (2017)
This bold black and gold design by Matt Ferguson (cakesandcomics.com) appears quite simple at first but a lingering look reveals layers of detail. Not only do the major movie motifs decorate the heroes’ profiles: the dress; the castle; the forest; the rose… but you can also see the receding tree line in the ends of the ball gown, individual castle windows, and even strands of hair. Designed for Disney’s live action adaptation of Beauty and the Beast, this is a striking movie poster with lots to explore.
This art deco inspired illustration by Heinz Schulz-Neudamm depicts windowless skyscrapers towering behind an ominous mechanical figures. Shadows are used to draw focus and a sepia-like tone provides a grungy, industrial edge giving life to the weighty themes of the movie. Designed for Fritz Lang’s Metropolis, this artwork is wonderfully atmospheric.
Created for scif-fi drama Rememory starring Peter Dinklage, this image is just so very clever. Brandon Kidwell (brandonkidwell.com) uses multiple exposures which give the appearance of exploring a landscape from within the protagonist’s mind.
Proud Mary (2018)
There is so much action here! The characters looks like they have been plucked mid scene and hidden in an elaborate hairstyle peppered with guns, knuckle dusters, and other killer miscellany (can you spot the hammer?) Lindeman & Associates (lassociates.com) created this super stylish poster for Najafi’s assassin thriller Proud Mary.
The Rocketeer (1991)
This retro poster designed by John Mattos (johnmattos.com) for Disney’s The Rocketeer is fantastic. Reminiscent of the movie’s late 1930s setting this teaser poster exudes vintage cool.
The Shape of Water (2017)
This intriguing poster for Guillermo Del Toro’s visionary movie The Shape of Water shows the two heroes in a beautifully vulnerable embrace. Designed by Midnight Oil (moagency.com) the rich colors bring an unusual warmth to an underwater setting which is somehow terribly enticing.
Saul Bass uses a spiralling vortex to simulate the title name affliction in this iconic design. The drama of Hitchcock’s psychological thriller is realised in the harsh brick orange background and rough capital font of the poster.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2 (2017)
This ironic, self-consciously cool, album cover style poster designed by BLT Communications (bltomato.com) is hilarious. Designed for James Gunn’s super hero sequel, this tongue in cheek imagining of the movie’s heroes is both aesthetically pleasing (love a bit of black and white artistry) and super fun.
Black Swan (2011)
A gorgeous film deserves equally gorgeous artwork, and this teaser poster from La Boca (site.laboca.co.uk) absolutely delivers. The swan is unsettling and sinister with it’s blood red beak poised over a ballerina dancing under the stars. Created for Aronofsky’s Black Swan, the clean lines and minimal use of color have a potent and dramatic impact.
Thor: Ragnarok (2017)
Here we have another strong poster by Lindeman & Associates (lassociates.com) who have arranged the movie’s main characters in marvelously symmetrical power poses. This artwork is vibrant and wildly colorful, and hints at what we can expect from Taika Watiti’s fresh and exciting Thor: Ragnarok.
Have we missed any of your favorites? Let us know in the comments section.