Best/Worst Movie Promos of the Week: Poster Domination Via 'In The Land of Blood and Honey' and 'Project X'

Best/Worst Movie Promos of the Week: Poster Domination Via 'In The Land of Blood and Honey' and 'Project X'

Nov 25, 2011

Project XIt’s a sad week for movies trailers, however that means there’s more room to express our thankfulness for some solid posters! But, in an effort to steer clear of that lack in the trailer department, this introduction is dedicated to the noteworthy non-trailers only. 

Hot New TV Spots

We’ve got two new TV spots that manage to command an audience in mere seconds. The new 30-second piece for The Artist benefits from its striking black-and-white format, a zesty score and tons of critical acclaim. In fact, after picking on my mother for her lack of appreciation for anything but the most mainstream movies, I’m proud to say that this one managed to catch her eye. On the other hand, there’s nothing wrong with a film about a topic that has a wide appeal. The Darkest Hour literally tears up the screen with a new TV spot that shows off the invading aliens’ ultimate weapon – shredding.

Hot New Featurettes

A major downside to a 3D re-release? You’ve got no new material to show in your marketing campaign. While we may be seeing more of the same in Titanic 3D’s trailer and poster, the promotional team did manage to rustle up something fresh – a featurette of James Cameron discussing the conversion process. On the sillier side, we also got a new featurette for Journey 2: The Mysterious Island and, just like the trailer, it solidifies the fact that this one will be for younger audiences.

Hot New Clips

We’ve got just one film commanding the clip department, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol. In a particularly smart marketing move, Paramount opted to release a clip of Simon Pegg and Jeremy Renner’s characters discussing some sort of daring jump. Rather than leave the topic as a mere display of dialogue, the studio followed it up by releasing a clip of the actual jump. But don’t worry, the video stops just short of spoiling Renner’s fate. Then again, I’d like to bet most of you can guess what happens next.

Ready for the material you can really be thankful for this Thanksgiving? Check out the best of the best below and enjoy a hearty holiday laugh at the expense of the worst promotional material of the week.

The Best Stuff

1. This Means War Poster: Do I want to see This Means War? No, not really, but there's still no denying that this is a pretty sleek-looking poster. As someone who rarely tolerates romantic movies with Reese Witherspoon at the core, seeing her sandwiched between Tom Hardy and Chris Pine makes her seem, well, smaller - and the boys aren't half bad to look at. The decision to drain the image of color and go black-and-white also lends itself to some wider intrigue as it presents the film as a romantic comedy that leans more towards the action side, rather than the typical far-too-tacky and idealistic romcoms, as does the character positioning, which highlights the piece's "Spy vs. Spy" sensibility so much so it could even lose the tagline.

This Means More Poster

2. Project X UK Poster: A kid passed out on the ground surrounded by red cups; what better way to show that Project X is a movie about a wild school party? Taking it a step further, the overly liquored-up victim is sprawled out in the shape of an “X.” On the aesthetic side, the lighting choice is quite effective as it hits the subject in a way that suggests the beam of light could be coming from a cop’s flashlight, or perhaps even one of those spotlights that are mounted on squad cars. But, what seals the deal more than anything, is the fact that one too many of us can relate to this very image – and the proof is all over Facebook.

Project X Poster

3. In The Land of Blood and Honey Poster: Talk about a striking image. Angelina Jolie recently wowed us with a particularly rousing trailer for her directorial debut, In The Land of Blood and Honey, and now we get this incredibly eye-catching poster design. Perhaps it's my pension for horror, but when I spotted this image floating around on the Internet, it was the blood spatter that caught my eye, which then lead it to the film's title. Then, upon a closer look, not only does the poster pack meaning courtesy of the Bosnia background, but the blood actually forms a divided man and a woman alluding to the film’s romantic core. There's really no better or more aesthetic way to get the point across.

In The Land of Blood and Honey Poster

The Worst Stuff

1. Gone Trailer: Oh, Amanda Seyfried; what have you done? As an avid Seyfried fan ever since her bumbling, boob-driven weather predicting days back in Mean Girls, it pains me to see her surrounded by such subpar talent. Actually, let’s not generalize the entire cast – let’s say everyone but Seyfried, Jennifer Carpenter and Wes Bentley. But, then again, Carpenter and Bentley don’t really get the chance to show off their acting chops in their brief snippets in this trailer because the cut is too busy zipping around, desperately trying to include every plot detail all while tossing in every twist imaginable in a lame and fruitless attempt to throw us off. What results is a leading lady that comes across as maniacal courtesy of a story that doesn’t make much sense, something quite along the lines of the Lindsay Lohan disaster I Know Who Killed Me.

2. A Thousand Words Poster: If the recently released trailer for A Thousand Words didn't make you want to punch Eddie Murphy in the face, this poster most certainly will. No, Murphy isn't a bad looking guy, but by releasing the trailer for the film first, we got a taste of who his character is in the movie and, well, he certainly fits the bill for typical Eddie Murphy desperately-trying-to-be-funny failures. However, even if we pretend not to know of Murphy's rocky professional past or his character, Jack McCall, this image is still a bit off putting, rather reminiscent of the unflattering image we got of Uma Thurman for the 2009 release, Motherhood.

A Thousand Words Poster

3. Beauty and the Beast 3D Trailer: And so my anti re-release rampage continues. Or maybe I just don't love these movies as much as I thought I did. I wouldn't say I ever get the urge to watch Beauty and the Beast, but if it were on TV, I'd certainly stop and watch it through. You'd think that'd be enough to make me even the slightest bit interested in catching the classic in 3D, however, the marketing campaign isn't rousing in the least. As I said last week with the poster for Titanic in 3D, it's obvious that the studios aren't going to deliver any fresh material with these second go-arounds, but there has to be something somewhat new to offer and merely stating that the film will be shown in 3D is just not enough. Fingers crossed Beauty and the Beast follows in Titanic's footsteps to at least offer up a featurette detailing the conversion process.

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