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Moonraker / Thailand

07.04.15

Poster Poster

Although considered by most Bond fans to be one of the weakest of the series, I know I’m not the only one to have a soft spot for MoonrakerRoger Moore‘s fifth outing as James Bond. Thanks to endless TV showings during the 1980s and early 1990s I’ve probably seen this more than any other in the series and, like Live and Let Die, it had a huge impression on my young mind.

Looking at it through the cynical fog of adulthood it’s easy to sneer at the camp script, supremely daft action sequences (motorised Gondola anyone?) and painfully obvious attempt to cash in on the success of Star Wars (a very common theme amongst films released in its wake). The film is probably the quintessential outing for Moore as Bond and only he could have pulled it off as well as he did, particularly when it comes to the hokey script and madcap action.

The film features several memorable sequences, including a cable car fight over Rio de Janeiro, and a decent bad guy in Richard Kiel‘s inimitable ‘Jaws’ who used to scare me senseless as a kid. Also notable is John Barry‘s soundtrack, which marked a departure from his previous Bond work by mainly using strings instead of the typical brass. The film also features one of the most (literally) eyebrow-raising character names in the form of Dr Holly Goodhead (Lois Chiles) and one of the best/worst sign-offs of the entire series:

Sir Frederick Gray, Minister of Defence:  My God, what’s Bond doing?
Q: I think he’s attempting re-entry, sir.

This is the poster printed for the release of the film in Thailand, with a painting by the artist known as Kwow that was clearly based on two of American artist Dan Goozee‘s paintings for the film. The main figures and some of the background is a repaint of the art on the the final Moonraker US one sheet with some of the elements from the international style B one sheet. I’ve been unable to find out anything about Kwow beyond other posters he worked on so if anyone has any more details please get in touch.

The other Moonraker posters I’ve collected can be seen here.

Platoon / Thailand

20.04.15

Poster Poster
Title
Platoon
AKA
--
Year of Film
1987
Director
Oliver Stone
Starring
Charlie Sheen, Willem Dafoe, Tom Berenger, Richard Edson, Keith David, Forest Whitaker, Kevin Dillon, Johnny Depp
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Charlie Sheen, Willem Dafoe, Tom Berenger, Richard Edson, Keith David, Forest Whitaker, Kevin Dillon, Johnny Depp,
Type of Poster
Thai
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Thailand
Year of Poster
1986
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Kwow
Size (inches)
21 7/16" x 30 12/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is the original Thai poster for the release of Oliver Stone‘s Academy Award-winning Vietnam war classic, Platoon, one of a three films that the director made on the subject (the others being Born on the Fourth of July and Heaven & Earth). The script, which was written by Stone, is based on his own experiences as an infantryman who served in tours of duty during the Vietnam war. He had signed up in 1967 after dropping out of Yale University and specifically requested to see combat in the war that had seen the first ground troops sent to the country two years earlier. Stone served in two different divisions for over a year and was wounded twice,  receiving several medals, including a Purple Heart.

The film follows Charlie Sheen‘s army grunt Chris Taylor (a proxy for Stone) who is serving as part of Bravo Company, 25th Infantry Division near the Cambodian Border. Taylor is fresh into the field and is treated with disdain by the more experienced soldiers (an incredible ensemble of acting talent, including Willem Dafoe, Tom Berenger, Keith David and Forest Whitaker) who have all been in country for months, and he is quickly made aware that his presence is inconsequential. After a few skirmishes in which some members of the division are killed, Taylor is eventually accepted into the group and discovers the grinding boredom and rampant drug use amongst his fellow soldiers. Tensions between two sergeants, the ill-tempered, battle-scarred Barnes (Berenger) and the pleasant, more reasonable Elias (Dafoe) reach breaking point following an incident involving innocent villagers. Upon returning to base, the issue of a court-martial for illegal killing is raised and when the division is sent out on their next patrol, things reach boiling point, leaving Taylor fighting to survive against the enemy as well as members of his own team.

The artwork on this Thai poster is by the artist who signs his work Kwow, about whom I’ve been able to discover little beyond other titles he worked on. The figure kneeling with his arms up references one of the most iconic scenes of the movie, which also appeared on several international posters for the film and was painted by Mike Ryan (the original artwork was sold at auction in 2014).

An American Werewolf in London / Thailand

11.01.16

Poster Poster
Title
An American Werewolf in London
AKA
--
Year of Film
1981
Director
John Landis
Starring
David Naughton, Jenny Agutter, Griffin Dunne, John Woodvine, Brian Glover, David Schofield
Origin of Film
USA | UK
Genre(s) of Film
David Naughton, Jenny Agutter, Griffin Dunne, John Woodvine, Brian Glover, David Schofield,
Type of Poster
Thai
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Thailand
Year of Poster
1981
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Kwow
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
From the director of Animal House - a different kind of animal | A masterpiece of terror

Director John Landis’ horror classic An American Werewolf in London was, unusually for the time, released simultaneously in North American and British cinemas. The film was shot in the UK with a largely local cast and crew thanks to the Eady Levy, which provided funding for British productions based on taxed box-office receipts. The levy attracted a number of foreign producers and directors including Stanley KubrickSidney Lumet and John Huston. The levy lasted for almost thirty years before being wound-up in 1985.

It was this incentive that saw Landis and his producing partners (including frequent collaborator George Folsey Jr.) move over here for the duration of filming, and although the two lead actors (David Naughton and Griffin Dunne) are American, the majority of the rest of the cast are British, including the gorgeous Jenny Agutter. The film makes excellent use of several London locations, with a memorable sequence on the Underground, plus the climactic scenes shot in and around Piccadilly Circus. There is an excellent article on the Guardian website that was written by Landis in 2009 in which he recalls his memories of shooting the film.

This Thai poster features colourful, unique artwork that was painted by the Thai artist who signs his art ‘Kwow’. I’ve struggled to find out much about him so if anyone has any more details please get in touch. Kwow decided to depict the infamous transformation scene as the main image along with a montage of gore from various points in the film, including the freakish dream that David has whilst in hospital that features evil creatures dressed in SS uniforms. Note that the numbers below Kwow’s signature are his phone number at the time. It was common practice for Thai artists to add their numbers to artwork in the hope of attracting further business.

Fans of the film would be wise to pick up the 2009 blu-ray release as it features a must-watch documentary on the film called Beware the Moon: Remembering ‘An American Werewolf in London’ that was conceived and filmed by life-long AWIL devotee Paul Davis. It features the majority of the surviving cast and crew and has clearly been put together by someone who cares about the film deeply.