' ' Cinema Romantico: What Movies Most Needed Individual Character Posters?

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

What Movies Most Needed Individual Character Posters?

Despite already having a poster including most of its myriad characters, Denis Villeneuve’s forthcoming “Dune”, which early reviews tend to suggest needs to be watched somewhere around Barstow, near the edge of the desert, preferably after the drugs have taken hold, also released several individual character posters. The upcoming “Venom 2” did this too as did Wes Anderson for “The French Dispatch.” Anderson has done this before too, like with “Fantastic Mr. Fox”, and even went the individual character poster interactive route with “Moonrise Kingdom.” The Coen Brothers, whose films generally have as enjoyable a plethora of characters as Anderson’s works, released character posters for their black comic romp “Burn After Reading.” Back in the halcyon days when I was working box office at the Cobblestone 9, I suggested to the new head manager, seeking to decorate his office, to cover the walls with all the character posters from “Jackie Brown.” He did not heed my advice. Still, character posters are a stylistic choice I have always enjoyed and one which I wish the marketing departments of more movies would employ. What movies do I most wish had gone the character poster route? Well, thank you for asking!

Best In Show. Honestly, I was sort of surprised in Googling around that these didn’t already exist. 

Kicking and Screaming. Speaking of St. Posey. I’m sure the budget of Noah Baumbach’s debut feature film did not allow for individual character posters, but boy would those have been the rage of all the liberal intelligentsia college towns. I just sincerely hope they would have gotten all the way to Friedrich (Chris Reed) with an accompanying “Two grapes!” quotation. 

Ronin. In my faux-dream garish San Fernando Valley home, these character posters would line the hallway to the guest bathroom. 

Mars Attacks! If there was Taffy Dale character poster, I would still have it up on my wall. 

The Misfits. Man, the Rat Pack, the Brat Pack, none of ’em could touch The Misfits with a 10-meter cattle prod.

Top Gun. I mean, the closing credits essentially are individual character posters. I might have become a movie memorabilia nut, scouring the Earth for Sundown posters.

Conan the Destroyer. The best part here would have been the wide-ranging appeal. Wilt Chamberlain could have signed Bombaata posters at Lakers fan events; NYC dance clubs would have put up Zula (Grace Jones) posters; “Wonder Years” fan conventions would have sold Princess Jehnna (Olivia d’Abo) posters by the truckload. 

L.A. Story. Steve Martin could have had so much fun with this concept. I would like to think he would have included character posters for characters who were not even in the movie. Martin Short as Personal Trainer. Valerie Bertinelli as Brand Ambassador. Justine Bateman as Unemployed Actor. Etc. 

The Ice Storm. A series of posters of 70s suburbia characters looking glum, just every single one more miserable than the last, might not have been the most audience-friendly marketing campaign but, boy, would it have been glorious. 

Trees Lounge. These would have been great because you could be drinking at some random dive bar in some random city and look over and notice a faded, PBR-stained Seymour Cassel or Debi Mazar or Mark Boone Junior poster staring back at you from the wood-paneled wall. 

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