This Week In Posters: ‘Life,’ Robot Fassbender, And We Play Guess The Wedding Comedy

Well I’m back, guys, did you miss me? You don’t have to answer that. Moving on, this week’s This Week In Posters begins with the new grey-bearded incarnation of Arnie in Aftermath, standing resolutely in diagonal surrounded by airborne particles that nowadays denote non-stop action. (Remember: action movie poster = lots of particles of shit flying everywhere.) I’m not sure what the most intriguing part of this is. Is it the tagline (“All he had left was revenge”) juxtaposed above the flaming shell of an airplane? Hey, plane. Remember when I said I’d kill you last?

Or is it the text below that, telling me that this Arnold Schwarzenegger-starring revenge movie about a flaming plane was actually inspired a true story? Could go either way, really.

I’m not sure what’s going on with the shapes in the middle of this pretty solid poster for The Handmaiden, but it’s so well done that I assumed that I’d know if I’d seen it yet. The pull quotes are actually less obnoxious than most, with only two “blankfully blanking” constructions, both reasonably lucid. Mostly I’m hung up on the fact that there’s a British film critic named “Tom Huddleston.” That poor bastard. I like to imagine he hangs out with Irish car salesman Michael Fussbender and Canadian sandwich maven Bryan Gauzeling.

Alien: Covenant‘s minimalist teaser posters were so good that I didn’t think they’d be able to top them when it came time to start advertising specifics. I still don’t know that you can ever top the alien outline with “run” above it, but an ad for Lawrence of Arabia-bot Michael Fassbender was a strong effort. I can understand hating Prometheus, but if you hated the scene where the God-alien rips off the Fassbot’s head you’re an idiot.

Last time I included an Assignment poster in This Week In Posters I hadn’t realized this was the Walter Hill movie where Michelle Rodriguez plays an assassin going after the “sociopathic doctor” who gave her a sex-change operation (Sigourney Weaver). Anyway, I appreciate that the guns-as-dicks are even more symbolic than usual in this poster, but I feel like if you’re going to make a movie with a plot this unabashedly tasteless you should at least own it with a ridiculous (re-dick-u-less?) tagline. This feels like they’re trying to hide what it’s about, which seems way shadier. Look, man, you made a castration revenge movie, you’re not getting any points for cleverness or subtlety.

Solid first poster for Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver, which just played SXSW. It seems like exactly the kind of cool-ass poster that will be catnip for people who know how to read “SXSW” out loud and unknown to everyone else. I don’t know why that always seems to happen with Edgar Wright movies, but maybe we should just be grateful that we’re occasionally still allowed to have cool things.

The blood spatter on her face looks way more realistic than the blood spatter on her shirt. That’s all I’ve got.

I was looking at this poster thinking “Hey, it’s that guy from that thing!” desperately trying to remember this actor’s name, GOD FORBID YOU THROW ME A BONE BY PUTTING IT ON THE DAMNED POSTER. Assholes.

Again, the face looks realistic, the shirt looks cheesy. Am I imagining this?

Ha, “Casualty Friday.”

The angle of his arms is screwing me all up. It looks like he had three quarters of his upper right arm removed. Old Scrubs injury.

I’m actually a little surprised he isn’t holding an actual drill. That he just killed a bunch of people with. Because puns. Crap, this is going to be the next Purge, isn’t it? Get ready for The Belko Experiment 4: Bank Holiday in six short years.

This movie seems to be about a young girl. I guess that’s all I need to know.

Diagonal! Lens flare! This series keeps upping the drama, which is pretty impressive for a franchise in which Larry The Cable Guy voices a tow truck named Mater.

As an inveterate literalist, I appreciate that they both matched the actor’s names with their faces and included an image of the actual city of tiny lights from the title. That’s how you show your work, people.

So, does Riz Ahmed play a hard-boiled detective? Discuss.

I assume this is about a dumb doggie with ghosts for owners in Mexico? It’s a good poster than can communicate all that. Anyway, that would be a good thing, because the best Pixar films are the ones with the talking animals — fact.

What is it about low-budget sci-fi that makes them overdo it with the titles? It’s like they’re trying to compensate for fewer special effects with more jargon in the titles. Anyway, this poster would be way better if it was a porno.

Oh, and this would also be better as a porno. What our movie presupposes is… maybe the devil’s candy are dicks?

This poster design, which is pretty cool, seems to have no relation to the tagline, which in turn has no relation to the title.

And here’s a less cool design for the same movie with the same tagline that’s just as nonsensical. Okay, fine, I’ll bite. Let’s IMDb this bad boy…

A director whose life crumbled when Cello, his Hollywood starlet girlfriend, killed herself, becomes obsessed with a robot designed to replicate her after he’s offered the chance to direct the film of Cello’s life.

How the hell did you get “diminuendo” from that? It’s a bad play on two words that seem unconnected to the plot. Also, her name is “Cello.”

*extremely Marlon Brando voice*


Wyatt Cenac stars in… We Bought A Winery? Okay sure.

Three out of the six pull quotes are “____ly ____” constructions. I can’t decide if that’s regression or progress. But let’s be honest, I’m seeing any movie with Sharlto Copley wearing a pink spread collar holding a rifle, no questions asked.

How To Be A Latin Lover is still doing the parody posters, but at least this one sort of makes sense. She’s old, he’s gold digging, etc. That being said, is gold digging a Latin thing?

Here’s a poster from the Berlin Film Festival about a black and white ingenue smoking cigarettes and completing some kind of quest something something the ghosts of the Holocaust, probably. I’m not sure about the yellow border. It makes it feel like an issue of National Geographic. Which makes me think I’m going to feel weird about masturbating to this someday.

Here’s Kong: Skull Island, still sort of doing the Apocalypse Now homage, in a more indirect way. It doesn’t really need the homage though, the crashing helicopter silhouetted over the moon is cool on its own. Unless that is an homage to something. Anyway, I’m glad you all could go on this journey with me.

This feels a little like the before part of a supplement ad Alex Jones would be shilling. 

This one looks legitimately cool, and makes the poster with spindly Brit™ Tom Hiddleston seem even more out of place.

Is that Brie Larson? She looks 12. Also, how many cameras does she need? It’s like they wanted to outdo every other movie where the ingenue is a photographer so they made her a DOUBLE PHOTOGRAPHER.

This girl gets a gun and all Brie Larson gets is 10 cameras? What gives? Cool shirt though.

A gorilla in the mist, get it? Pretty cool, actually. The fog line is an underutilized trick for depicting scale.

I don’t know why I just thought of this, but what this movie really needs is an Ice Cube-in-Anaconda moment in the trailer. It’s apes out there dis big?!

Hey, it’s neckless Jake Gyllenhaal! All I can imagine when I look at this is a neckless, miniature Jake Gyllenhaal stomping around my house kicking over shot glasses and fist punching to Ludacris. I may have had a stroke.

This one has a weird “off” quality where I keep scrolling back up to look at it again. Like the focal point of the poster is his name badge, which seems completely irrelevant, but that just makes me circle around the rest of it again. Again, I’m glad to have you on this journey.

Ryan Reynolds is gonna polish your butt.

Rebecca Ferguson has a different-colored light than Jake Gyllenhaal. You think this will become important? Also, astronauts look like they’re wearing water polo caps.

Marketing Director: Hmm, I like it, but…

Poster Designer: Shoot.

MD: Oh, nothing. Never mind.

PD: Just say it, Bob. How long have we worked together now? I promise, you’re not going to hurt my feelings.

MD: Well. It’s just that. I dunno, I was hoping it could have some sharks?

PD: Done.

MD: I love you, Dave.

Oh hell yes, it’s the boner-in-sweatpants coming of age tale I’ve been dreaming of. I like that “obvious dick puns” are the new hotness in poster design.

Remember that show you barely tolerated as a kid? It’s back! This poster is basically like, “What if Leonardo Da Vinci had drawn some cheap foreign knockoff designs?”

I have to admit, these Power Rangers posters are real classy lookin’, especially for a series that was basically about guys in motorcycle helmets doing karate on monsters.

It’s weird to me that they can recognize that the little lightning bolt logo is cool, and yet still make all the character design hopelessly busy.

Can you even tell what the hell that stuff is supposed to be below the characters? It looks like someone dunked some owl pellets in a paint bucket and then pulled them apart. Like I said, “debris flying everywhere” = “thrilling action” in poster design.

Okay, so it’s about… like… a murderous beauty pageant? And the “claws are out,” literally kind of.

Kate McKinnon is the “party down under.” And then she has Vegemite tucked into her sash.  You know, I don’t usually go straight to “yeast infection metaphor” but this seems to imply that rather strongly.

You think these are these actresses’ real torsos or did a poster designer somewhere just have to imagine what their respective boobs might look like? 

So what are the sashes for? Bachelorette party? That’s what I’m going to assume. How many slow-motion scenes of the cast partying set to rap do you think there’ll be? I’m hoping at least 12. Can never get enough of those, I always say.

“Better Off Wed,” yes, I’m definitely thinking bachelorette party movie. Horror? Comedy? Horror/comedy?

This poster is really making me feel like I should know who Mick Rock is.

Often referred to as “The Man Who Shot the Seventies,” most of the memorable images of David Bowie as Ziggy Stardust were shot by Rock, in his capacity as Bowie’s official photographer. [Wikipedia]

That’s cool. I guess I have to see this now to educate myself. I can’t go through life knowing nothing about a legendary photographer other than that he looks like Fred Armisen dressed as Robert Smith.

“For better…” For better what? For better off dead? For better homes and gardens? Tell me, I need to know!

Oh, for better or worse. I was way off.

Psh, it’s Katherine Heigl, the worst is already implied. HEYO! Does that mean Rosario Dawson and Katherine Heigl are married in this? Or is it more of a fatal attraction/love triangle kind of a situation?

A woman sets out to make life hell for her ex-husband’s new wife. [IMDb]

Ah, yeah, I probably should’ve guessed that. Anyway, I like to imagine they named it after the slowed down dramatic cover song that will be in the trailer.

You cannot reboot an older property without shortening the character’s name, them’s the rules. I think it’s like how everyone at the Oscars refers to Martin Scorsese as “Marty.” Like if you shorten the name it’s going to trick people into familiarity. “Wonder Woman? Oh, you mean Wondy? Heck yeah, I love that broad, she was the maid of honor at my wedding.”

Apparently Woody Woodpecker is known as “Pica-Pau” in Brazil, which is a much better onomatopeia. I don’t like his eyes though. It looks like he’s watching me go to the toilet.