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Blow Out / one sheet / USA

18.05.15

Poster Poster
Title
Blow Out
AKA
--
Year of Film
1981
Director
Brian De Palma
Starring
John Travolta, Nancy Allen, John Lithgow, Dennis Franz, Peter Boyden, Curt May, John Aquino, John McMartin
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
John Travolta, Nancy Allen, John Lithgow, Dennis Franz, Peter Boyden, Curt May, John Aquino, John McMartin,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1981
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
810132
Tagline
Murder has a sound all of its own

Following the poor reception of 1980’s Dressed to Kill, director Brian De Palma decided to develop an idea he’d had during production that was based on Antonioni’s 1966 thriller Blow Up, swapping photography for sound recording. The resultant film, with a screenplay by De Palma, was named Blow Out and released almost exactly a year after Dressed to Kill. John Travolta stars as Jack Terry, a sound technician who is working on a low-budget exploitation film and is tasked by a producer to set out and record a better scream for a pivotal scene as well as some ambient noises. Jack travels to a local park at night to record but whilst there he witnesses a limousine crash off a road and into a lake.

After diving in to see if there are any survivors Jack discovers the driver dead and a young woman alive but trapped in the back of the car. After rescuing her and pulling her to safety, Jack discovers that the driver was a governor and presidential candidate and the woman is Sally (De Palma’s then wife Nancy Allen), an escort. The governor’s associates persuade Jack to cover up the fact that Sally was in the car and whilst listening to the recordings he made that night he begins to suspect that the crash wasn’t an accident as people are being led to believe. When he discovers that an amateur cameraman was also recording in the park that night he works with Sally to get a copy of the film, and when spliced together it becomes clear that a single gunshot was fired before the car smashes into the lake. It soon becomes clear that Jack has inadvertently involved himself in a deepening conspiracy and that he and Sally are in grave danger, with the gunman Burke (John Lithgow) still at large and keen to tie up loose ends.

As expected, the film is visually stylish and features several of De Palma’s trademark bravura sequences, with one towards the end of the film featuring a parade and a fireworks display that is particularly memorable. The leads all give excellent performances, with Travolta’s low-key depiction of an ordinary man in over his head is in stark contrast to his breakout role in 1977’s Saturday Night Fever. The score by regular De Palma collaborator Pino Donaggio is also superb and serves the film perfectly.

Although it received several rave reviews from the likes of Pauline Kael and Roger Ebert, the film failed to take off at the box-office and only found cult success years after its initial release. The home video label Criterion released the film on blu-ray in 2011 and during a making-of documentary Nancy Allen mentions the marketing for the film, and this poster, as not helping the film’s box-office performance. It’s a very simple image and perhaps didn’t say enough about the film to entice potential film-goers. It’s also thought that word of mouth about the notoriously downbeat ending probably didn’t help either.

If anyone has any ideas who designed this poster please get in touch.

The Manhattan Project / one sheet / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Manhattan Project
AKA
Deadly Game (USA - video title)
Year of Film
1986
Director
Marshall Brickman
Starring
John Lithgow, Christopher Collet, Cynthia Nixon, Jill Eikenberry, John Mahoney, Richard Jenkins
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
John Lithgow, Christopher Collet, Cynthia Nixon, Jill Eikenberry, John Mahoney, Richard Jenkins,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1986
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 41 1/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
Paul Stevens' high school science project has gotten a little out of hand. He just built an atomic bomb. Now he's got 11 hours to make sure it doesn't work.

The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension / one sheet / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster

Cliffhanger / one sheet / international

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Cliffhanger
AKA
Risco Total (Brazil)
Year of Film
1993
Director
Renny Harlin
Starring
Sylvester Stallone, John Lithgow, Michael Rooker, Janine Turner, Leon, Paul Winfield, Ralph Waite
Origin of Film
Italy | France | USA
Genre(s) of Film
Sylvester Stallone, John Lithgow, Michael Rooker, Janine Turner, Leon, Paul Winfield, Ralph Waite,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
International
Year of Poster
1993
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Renato Casaro
Size (inches)
27" x 40"
SS or DS
DS
NSS #
--
Tagline
The height of adventure