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Weird Science / one sheet / USA

09.04.14

Poster Poster
Title
Weird Science
AKA
La chica explosiva (Argentina)
Year of Film
1985
Director
John Hughes
Starring
Anthony Michael Hall, Kelly LeBrock, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Bill Paxton, Suzanne Snyder, Judie Aronson, Robert Downey Jr., Robert Rusler, Vernon Wells, Britt Leach, Barbara Lang, Michael Berryman
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Anthony Michael Hall, Kelly LeBrock, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Bill Paxton, Suzanne Snyder, Judie Aronson, Robert Downey Jr., Robert Rusler, Vernon Wells, Britt Leach, Barbara Lang, Michael Berryman,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1985
Designer
Tom Jung
Artist
Duane Meltzer
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 40 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
850065
Tagline
It's all in the name of science. Weird Science.

This is the American one sheet for Weird Science, the bonkers 1980s comedy from the late, great director John Hughes. Producer Joel Silver bought the rights to a 1950s EC Comics magazine of the same name and Hughes wrote the screenplay himself. Anthony Michael Hall, a regular colaborator with the director (he appeared in Breakfast Club the same year as Weird Science) stars alongside Ilan Mitchell-Smith as Gary and Wyatt, a pair of high-school nerds who are struggling to be accepted by their peers.

One evening the pair decide to try and create their perfect woman, inspired by a viewing of the classic Frankenstein film and using their computer coding skills. Following a series of improbable incidents, including a lightning strike and the pair’s successful hacking into a government mainframe computer (classic 80s nonsense), the gorgeous Lisa (an unforgettable appearance by Kelly LeBrock) steps out of their bathroom and asks “So, what would you little maniacs like to do first?” The rest of the film sees Lisa using various supernatural skills, including memory manipulation and reality warping to help the boys lose their inhibitions and gain the friendship of their school peers. The film features several madcap sequences, including the moment a bunch of psychotic bikers led by Vernon Wells (of Mad Max 2 fame) crash a house party, and Bill Paxton appears in a memorable turn as Wyatt’s brother Chet.

This one sheet was art directed by the American designer and artist Tom Jung who is perhaps most famous for his work on the posters for Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back but has been working on film advertising for over 50 years, as well as storyboarding for a number of films. The artwork (Lisa’s body appears to have been painted, and the title too) was apparently done by an artist and designer called Duane Meltzer who worked at Universal Studios at the time of the film’s release. According to the about page on his official website he also worked as a creative at Twentieth Century Fox studios before forming POV Entertainment Design in 1988. He has continued to work on key art for films, as well as home entertainment packaging and more since then.

The Great Train Robbery / one sheet / USA

03.04.12

Poster Poster
Title
The Great Train Robbery
AKA
The First Great Train Robbery (UK - full title)
Year of Film
1979
Director
Michael Crichton
Starring
Sean Connery, Donald Sutherland, Lesley-Anne Down, Alan Webb, Malcolm Terris, Robert Lang, Michael Elphick, Wayne Sleep, Pamela Salem, Gabrielle Lloyd
Origin of Film
UK
Genre(s) of Film
Sean Connery, Donald Sutherland, Lesley-Anne Down, Alan Webb, Malcolm Terris, Robert Lang, Michael Elphick, Wayne Sleep, Pamela Salem, Gabrielle Lloyd,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1979
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Roger Kastel
Size (inches)
27 2/16" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
790007
Tagline
Never have so few taken so much from so many.

Roger Kastel artwork on this poster for the 1978 heist-caper starring Donald Sutherland and Sean Connery and directed by the late Michael Crichton. The film is based on his book of the same name, which is itself loosely based on an actual heist known as the Great Gold Robbery of 1855 in which a large quantity of gold was stolen from a train by a master thief and his accomplices. Pierce (Connery) works with Agar (Sutherland) to acquire the four keys that are required to break into the storage compartment on the moving train and must then attempt to escape with the loot.

The film is notable for the stunt-work, including walking on the roof of a moving train, that was apparently done by Connery himself. It’s also worth noting that the film was renamed to The First Great Train Robbery in the UK so it wouldn’t get confused with an infamous British train robbery in 1963 in which £2.6 million was stolen from a train in Buckinghamshire. The crime was dubbed The Great Train Robbery by the British press.

Roger Kastel’s website can be viewed here and it features plenty of great images of his brilliant work, including the iconic image that he originally drew for the paperback cover of Jaws, which was later used on movie posters for the film all over the world.. He’s also responsible for the excellent ‘Gone with the Wind’ style one sheet for The Empire Strikes Back.

The original trailer for the film is on YouTube.

The Great Train Robbery / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Great Train Robbery
AKA
The First Great Train Robbery (UK - full title)
Year of Film
1979
Director
Michael Crichton
Starring
Sean Connery, Donald Sutherland, Lesley-Anne Down, Alan Webb, Malcolm Terris, Robert Lang, Michael Elphick, Wayne Sleep, Pamela Salem, Gabrielle Lloyd
Origin of Film
UK
Genre(s) of Film
Sean Connery, Donald Sutherland, Lesley-Anne Down, Alan Webb, Malcolm Terris, Robert Lang, Michael Elphick, Wayne Sleep, Pamela Salem, Gabrielle Lloyd,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1979
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Tom Jung
Size (inches)
20 6/16" x 28 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

The Mackintosh Man / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster

Alligator / B2 / black style / Japan

17.09.12

Poster Poster
Title
Alligator
AKA
Arigêtâ (Japan)
Year of Film
1980
Director
Lewis Teague
Starring
Robert Forster, Robin Riker, Michael V. Gazzo, Dean Jagger, Sydney Lassick, Jack Carter, Perry Lang, Jim Kelly, Henry Silva, Bart Braverman
Origin of Film
Japan
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
Black style
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1981
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 6/16" x 28 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Alligator, the 1980 giant beast in the sewers b-movie, was directed by Lewis Teague (Cujo, The Jewel of the Nile) and had its screenplay written by John Sayles, who was also behind the Roger Corman-produced hit Piranha (1978). The story sees a baby alligator bought by a young girl in Florida, and subsequently named Ramón, flushed down the sewers in Los Angeles by her animal-phobic father. The film then jumps to twelve years later and the reptile has grown to the size of a bus after eating the corpses of dead pets that have been injected with a secret growth formula and dumped into the sewers. After human body parts begin showing up with alarming regularity the world-weary detective David Madison (genre stalwart Robert Forster) is sent into the sewers to investigate what’s behind the murders, along with reptile expert Marisa Kendall (Robin Riker – as pictured on this poster), the girl that originally flushed Ramón into the sewers.

The film features an infamous scene where Ramón escapes from the sewers and rampages through a high-society wedding murdering anyone who crosses his path. This scene can be viewed on YouTube.

This is one of two Japanese posters for the film that I’m aware of, and I’ve called this the ‘black style’.

The original trailer is on YouTube.