This Week In Posters: Divergent Vs. The Hunger Games, Plus, Zoolander 2

Welcome back to This Week in Posters, the best movie posters feature on the Internet. This week, we start with a new poster for The Big Short. This one’s much less conceptual than the last one, which is to be expected when your movie stars Batman, Baby Goose, and Brad Pitt (and also, uh… Maxwell Smart?). Anyway, this looks like a case of “Who’s Acting Hardest?” I have to give the slight edge to Pitt, on account of being least recognizable here. This one’s fairly straightforward, so I hope the next poster includes a lengthy explanation of collateralized debt.

The more I see Alvin and the Chipmunks posters, the more I appreciate the Peanuts movie for not giving its characters those monstrous, glassy, dead eyes. Alvin is surfing, Theodore is terrified, and Simon is… bemused? And yet their eyes all look exactly the same. And who is that guy, Bargain Bin Joseph Gordon-Levitt? I tried to figure it out using the IMDb page and I still have no idea. Let’s call him Miles Gorden-Lever.

In following Alvin with Zoolander, we get sort of a tale of two puns here. Obviously this one’s more successful. I like this poster a lot, mostly because of the concept, but also because they’ve got a “Spy vs. Spy” thing going on. Not to mention, can you believe selfies weren’t a thing yet when the first Zoolander came out? I probably shouldn’t be happy about this movie, but I am.

I admire the restraint it must’ve taken not to make a “Zoolander No. 2” perfume bottle into an overt sh*t joke. Is it hypocritical to be excited about this when I wasn’t about Anchorman 2 or Dumb and Dumber To? It just seems like Ben Stiller’s movies have aged a little better than the Farrellys’. Discuss.

The Witch is definitely winning the prize for coolest posters. This one’s not quite as cool as the one with the creepy goat, but it’s hard to top yourself when you come straight out the gate with a creepy goat.

ALTERNATE IDEA: The Witch was written entirely in exhaustively-studied, 17th century colonial English vernacular. It would’ve been kind of cool if they’d done all the marketing in the same period English. Then again, they probably wanted people to actually see it, so I can understand not going with that idea.

“You can’t scream and hold your breathe at the same time.”

Not only is that a fresh take on “In space, no one can hear you scream,” it’s more accurate. I think. I’ve never been to space, but I can confirm trying to scream and hold your breath at the same time is impossible. I watch people attempt it every time I fart in a crowded elevator.

I like this simple IMAX poster for Star Wars a little better than the pyramid of characters-style  poster. My only concern with this movie is whether I’ll be able to finish all the articles about the BB-8’s gender and the explanations of Kylo-Ren’s light saber before the movie comes out. Will I even understand the movie without it? These damned Star Wars are more complicated than the Balkans. Serious question: Have there been other movies where people knew the name of a droid that gets a cameo in the trailer before anyone had seen the movie?

Spotlight going with the word cloud approach here. It’s got great reviews! That we don’t even need to attribute! There has to be some kind of irony to a movie about courageous journalists using unattributed quotes in the poster.

I hope I’m not alone in having to look up Tori Kelly and Taron Egerton. I really wish those two would get married, and have a bunch of kids. Then they could sign their Christmas card “Tori, Taron, Tarles, Tamuel, Tephanie, Tito, and Titia.” Terry Tristmas tom ta tole tamily.

I like the look of this poster, but I don’t get much sense of what it’s actually about. “Boy & the World?” Pretty vague, no? But as long as it’s got beauty, wonder, sadness, and joy,” I’m sold.

Pretty solid Dali-esque visual simile in the new Moonwalkers poster here, and as an added benefit, it doesn’t have Ron Perlman and Rupert Grint’s faces in it. If it’s about conspiracy theories, I have to wonder if it involves a hollow moon or lizard people. There’s a moon in the poster, and if I had to choose anyone to play a lizard person, Ron Perlman would definitely be in my top five.

Oh sure, put Jaeden Lieberher on the poster, but God forbid you include his name. I guess I understand. The kid’s a solid actor, but he’s got a real mouthful of a moniker. No shame in a stage name, kid. How about Jack Letterman? Jake Levinson? Jared Leto? The options are endless.

Anyway, I enjoyed Mud, but I’m not sure what’s going on in this poster. It looks like an ’80s VHS slasher movie starring a young Emperor Palpatine.

The way her left arm disappears into his chest creates a strange optical effect. I admit I’m intrigued by the “let the controversy begin” quote, though I get zero indication why this might be controversial.

When a man meets a young girl in a parking lot he attempts to help her avoid a bleak destiny by initiating her into the beauty of the outside world. The journey shakes them in ways neither expects. [IMDb synopsis]

Huh, okay. Really protecting your secrets there, aren’t you? That’s definitely the most important aspect of marketing an indie movie, making sure to protect your valuable mystery, so that no one really knows what it’s about and it doesn’t ruin the surprise when they inexplicably seek it out to view. Good call.

I don’t know who Ross Partridge (writer, director, star, according to IMDb) or Oona Laurence are, but according to IMDb, Scoot McNairy is also in this. Talk about burying the lede.

Come on, bro, the whale wasn’t that big. Talk about a fish story, am I right?

Nice color scheme and design, but does anyone else think the kid looks kind of like a vampire?

Here’s one of the new fake propaganda posters from The Hunger Games: I Forget Which One This Is. These are always pretty good. I don’t know (remember?) who this Augustus Braun is, but I’m excited to find out. I’d be more excited if this poster had more crotch bulge, but to be fair I always say that.

Cool boots, man. There’s also the nice Braun-Brawn pun. So much of The Hunger Games is so well done, sometimes I wonder how good it could’ve been if it had been just one movie, or a miniseries, instead of four long-ass movies that end in the middle of the second act. Also, if it didn’t have that one guy who is a master of disguise thanks to his experience decorating cakes.

See? “Mags Flanagan,” another great name. They’re great at making this look alternate-futuristic, like a modern poster if totalitarianism had won.

So one of the Hunger Games people has a broken neck? Huh. According to the Hunger Games wikia:

Porter Millicent Tripp was the victor of the 38th Hunger Games from District 5. Porter Millicent Trip got an spinal injury on the last day of her Games. Due to her spinal injury, she had to wear a neck brace on her Victory Tour.

Neat. You think the big red dot is a Japan reference or just coincidental? Maybe I’ll find out five months from now when I watch this movie on a plane.

Ooh, “Gods of Egypt,” how many times have they made this movie now? Are there even any more Titans left to be wrath’d? Anyway, it looks like Utility Kilt John has discovered the AllSpark here, so I have to assume the Persians are in trouble.

People got mad about the white washing in Exodus? Cool, let’s make a movie about Egyptian deities and cast actual Scandinavians in it and see what happens.

Also, what the hell is that going on behind him? Is that the Mansquito?

Phew, okay good, it looks like there are actually black people in this. And a whole lot of them! …Hold on a minute, I think that might be all the same guy.

I know I like to make fun of Divergent for being a poor man’s Hunger Games starring a group of Utah Hot Topic models, but… actually, I’m not sure where I was going with this sentence. Question: Why does Miles Teller’s face always crack me up? It doesn’t matter what he’s doing, he’s always this bizarre combination of forlorn, confused, and smug.

The Hunger Games has “Porter Millicent Tripp,” Divergent has… Tris.

Here’s this guy staring into his fogged up bathroom mirror wondering “How’s my hair? Do I look dystopian enough?”

This looks a little like a drunk driving PSA, doesn’t it? That said, I enjoy that the symbol of Detroit is a hoodie filled with broken glass. I live in San Francisco, where our symbol is an iPhone 6 that only plays fart sounds.

This movie looks like it’s going to be a mash-up of the last 20 years of technology tropes. Like Tom Cruise moving around RoboCop’s targets with his VR gloves.

God I love you, Nicholas Sparks. “This summer, SUNGLASSES, from best-selling author Nicholas Sparks. Starring White Chick, and Bland Guy. Will they stare into the sun drenched North Carolina coast? Will there be kissing and Spanish moss? Whose sweet-hearted relative tragically died in order to give a cheesy life lesson?”

Also, good lord, how wide is that guy? Either he’s eight feet tall or Teresa Palmer is knee high to a toad stool.

True story, I had no idea Spike Lee’s new movie was about women withholding sex to stop gang violence until now. Also, this poster is great, and it could easily fit in with the Hunger Games posters.

Also: Spike Lee’s last movie seemed to be written entirely in slam poem, he’s also producing that Katie Holmes movie that looks like it might be about slam poets, and now Chi-raq, has a trailer full of rhymes. Has Spike Lee been seduced by the rhyme? Discuss.

I think the red is, like, symbolism.

Gotta love the Dutch, they put the poster in Dutch, but leave all the critic quotes untranslated. Also, Dutch is a hilarious language. No way you could dream up gibberish funnier sounding than “17 Maart in de bioscoop.”

Vince Mancini is a writer and comedian living in San Francisco. A graduate of Columbia’s non-fiction MFA program, his work has appeared on FilmDrunk, the UPROXX network, the Portland Mercury, the East Bay Express, and all over his mom’s refrigerator. Fan FilmDrunk on Facebook, find the latest movie reviews here.