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Flesh and Blood / quad / UK

29.07.15

Poster Poster
Title
Flesh and Blood
AKA
Flesh+Blood (alt. spelling)
Year of Film
1985
Director
Paul Verhoeven
Starring
Rutger Hauer, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tom Burlinson, Jack Thompson, Fernando Hilbeck, Susan Tyrrell, Ronald Lacey, Brion James
Origin of Film
Spain | USA | Netherlands
Genre(s) of Film
Rutger Hauer, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tom Burlinson, Jack Thompson, Fernando Hilbeck, Susan Tyrrell, Ronald Lacey, Brion James,
Type of Poster
Quad
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
1985
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown artist - based on artwork by Renato Casaro
Size (inches)
30 3/16" x 39 15/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
A timeless adventure, a passion for wealth and power. Only the strongest will survive.

This is the British quad for the release of Dutch director Paul Verhoeven‘s first English language film, Flesh and Blood (sometimes referred to as Flesh+Blood). Verhoeven had been making films with subsidies from the Dutch government but things had been proving difficult due to the controversial subject matter of his stories so he decided to seek financial backing from a Hollywood studio. The now defunct Orion Pictures stumped up most of the budget for Flesh and Blood and had asked the director for a war film after seeing the celebrated Soldier of Orange. Verhoeven had nothing prepared in that genre so he worked hastily with a regular collaborator, the screenwriter Gerard Soeteman, to adapt some unused material from their TV series Floris, which was set during the Middle-Ages. Verhoeven would later rue the decision to allow Orion to insist on script changes that added a romantic interest to the story.

Set in Italy in 1501, the film features the Dutch actor Rutger Hauer, who had worked with Verhoeven several times before (including on Floris), as Martin, the leader of a band of mercenaries who are asked to help Lord Arnolfini (Fernando Hilbeck) retake his city that was captured whilst he was away. After successfully storming and recapturing it the mercenaries are initially told they can ransack the houses of the richest inhabitants of the city, but Arnolfini then changes his mind and orders his army to march the mercenaries from the city without the bounty that was agreed. The group vow to take their revenge and when Arnolfini’s son Steven (Tom Burlinson) leaves the castle to meet Agnes (Jennifer Jason Leigh), a noblewoman who has been betrothed to him, the mercenaries strike. After attacking the caravan and badly wounding Arnolfini, they kidnap Agnes and ride away with her. Eventually they end up at a castle where they hole-up and attempt to see off any attempts to rescue Agnes, who is seemingly falling in love with Martin.

Although it features moments of humour, Verhoeven’s intention was to show that the Middle-Ages weren’t as glamorous and pleasant as had been depicted in previous films, so he doesn’t shy away from casual violence, filth and degradation. Agnes in particular is subjected to a humiliating ordeal at the hands of the mercenaries, effectively ending up as their plaything later in the film. There’s plenty of blood-letting too with some battle scenes that are not for the faint hearted. Apparently the production was beset with problems, including an uncooperative international crew who were often drunk or under the influence of drugs, as well as a giant rift that opened up between Verhoeven and Hauer because the actor wanted to build a career as a heroic leading man, but the director wanted his character to be more ambiguous and at times unpleasant. The resulting film is definitely uneven and at times confusing, but is nevertheless engaging. Hauer in particular injects his scenes with plenty of wild energy and Jennifer Jason Leigh is memorable as the sensuous Agnes. Unfortunately Orion botched the American release and the film apparently flopped quickly. Verhoeven would later say he felt that he’d probably made the film too cynical and downbeat for audiences to take.

This artwork was adapted by an unknown British artist from an original piece of art by the Italian artist Renato Casaro, which was originally painted for the German poster. Notable changes include the position of the characters, which widened for this quad, plus the smaller figure of Hauer is also markedly different. One of my favourite artists, Renato Casaro had a prolific movie poster output that lasted over 35 years. He began his career in 1953, aged 19, at the famous Studio Favalli in Rome and would go on to design and paint posters for many of the biggest directors in the world. His skill at accurately portraying actors and his brilliant use of colour and composition saw him much in demand from studios and actors alike. His artwork has featured on posters used in multiple countries, including Japan, Germany, USA as well as in his native Italy.

Check out the incredible amount of work on his official website here, which also features a biography of the artist. In March 2014 I published an exclusive interview with Renato and it can be read by clicking here. The other posters I’ve collected by Renato Casaro are here.

Carrie / one sheet / Turkey

05.08.15

Poster Poster
Title
Carrie
AKA
Carrie, lo sguardo di Satana [The gaze of Satan] (Italy) | Keri (Serbia)
Year of Film
1976
Director
Brian De Palma
Starring
Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie, Betty Buckley, Amy Irving, William Katt, Nancy Allen, John Travolta
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie, Betty Buckley, Amy Irving, William Katt, Nancy Allen, John Travolta,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Turkey
Year of Poster
1981
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
26 14/16" x 39 4/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Brian De Palma‘s horror classic Carrie still stands up today as a perfectly paced thriller and a powerful portrait of the torment suffered by a social outcast on the receiving end of a bullying campaign. Sissy Spacek delivers a breakout performance as Carrie White, the teenager who is picked upon by her teachers, peers and her domineering, abusive mother Margaret (played brilliantly by Piper Laurie). What nobody knows is that Carrie has discovered that she has a latent telekinetic power that flares up when she’s upset or angry. The film also features memorable turns from several young actors who were relative unknowns at the time, including John TravoltaNancy Allen and William Katt as Tommy.

The unforgettable prom night sequence that sees Carrie’s destructive powers fully unleashed was clearly seen as the marketing cornerstone for the film, as evidenced by the images at the bottom of this Turkish one sheet. A still from the scene features on the brilliant Japanese B2. An image of Sissy Spacek drenched in blood is often used to promote the film and has been used for multiple DVD covers and other marketing materials. This artwork only appears on the Turkish poster but my friend Sim Branaghan confirmed that it was originally used by the UK publishing company NEL on the cover of the paperback reprint of Stephen King’s novel as early as 1975. Here’s a link to it on a later 1978 edition, also published by NEL. I’ve searched but am unable to find an artist to whom I can credit it.

Treasure Island / 30×40 / USA

14.11.11

Poster Poster
Title
Treasure Island
AKA
--
Year of Film
1972
Director
John Hough
Starring
Orson Welles, Kim Burfield, Walter Slezak, Rik Battaglia, Ángel del Pozo, Lionel Stander, Jean Lefebvre, Maria Rohm, Paul Muller
Origin of Film
France | Italy | Spain | UK | West Germany
Genre(s) of Film
Orson Welles, Kim Burfield, Walter Slezak, Rik Battaglia, Ángel del Pozo, Lionel Stander, Jean Lefebvre, Maria Rohm, Paul Muller,
Type of Poster
30x40
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1972
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
30 1/16" x 40"
NSS #
72/397
Tagline
NOW ORSON WELLES as "Long John Silver" | Sail away into the all-new excitement of the greatest pirate adventure ever!

One of over fifty film and TV adaptations of Robert Louis Stevenson‘s classic 19th century novel of the same name, this version of Treasure Island is only really notable for the fact that it starred Orson Welles. Apparently Welles contributed to the script under the pseudonym ‘O. W. Jeeves’ and also had his voice dubbed by another actor in post-production.

This poster features an excellent portrait of Welles by an unknown artist. There is what could possibly be a signature and date to the right of the open-mouthed boy (Jim Hawkins). If anyone has any ideas who may have illustrated it please get in touch.

The sans-serif typeface to announce Welles is an odd choice since it doesn’t match with the rest of the poster at all, although it’s quite clear what the producers felt was the main selling point of the film.

Basket Case / quad / UK

27.01.12

Poster Poster
Title
Basket Case
AKA
¿Dónde te escondes, hermano? [Where are you hiding, brother?] (Spain)
Year of Film
1982
Director
Frank Henenlotter
Starring
Kevin Van Hentenryck, Terri Susan Smith, Beverly Bonner, Robert Vogel, Diana Browne, Lloyd Pace, Bill Freeman, Joe Clarke
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kevin Van Hentenryck, Terri Susan Smith, Beverly Bonner, Robert Vogel, Diana Browne, Lloyd Pace, Bill Freeman, Joe Clarke,
Type of Poster
Quad
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
30 2/16" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
The tenant in room 7 is very small, very twisted and very mad.

Frank Henenlotter’s marvellously sleazy Basket Case is a true cult classic and is a film that transcended it’s micro budget to become a mainstay of midnight movies across the globe. Technically the film shouldn’t work; the acting is terrible throughout and makes the cast of Tommy Wiseau’s The Room look like Oscar-winning legends, the special effects are laughable and the editing is seriously rough in places, but the film has a certain charm that allows you to forgive it’s faults and revel in its trashy delights.

The film is definitely a love letter to a New York City, specifically the area around Times Square and 42nd street, that has long since changed. On the film’s excellent audio commentary Henenlotter talks about how he could see the change coming and shot lots of footage of the area so he could capture what it was like before it was cleaned up and sanitised beyond all recognition. Times Square was once a haven of sleazy nightclubs, nude shows and sex shops, full of weird and wonderful characters, particularly once the sun went down. Basket Case was shot in and around the area and you can really feel the griminess in every scene, particularly the opening shots where Duane (poodle-haired Kevin Van Hentenryck) makes his way through these streets on his way to Hotel Broslin.

Like many low-budget ($35k apparently) films Basket Case had some trouble getting into cinemas in the form that the director had envisioned. This is talked about in the commentary and is mentioned on Hotelbroslin.com, the official website:

When Analysis Films first released “Basket Case,” they cut it. They removed most of the gore so the film would be “funnier.” Obviously, the gore is part of the punch line so their cut version was awful, few came to see it, and the film died almost the moment it was released in April of ’82. However, “Drive-In Movie Critic” Joe Bob Briggs wanted to host the Dallas premiere of the film in June but wouldn’t host a cut version. So Analysis sent it to Dallas uncut and let it play there. The film quickly started selling out. So Analysis quietly replaced the cut version with the uncut version everywhere else and the film suddenly became a hit. After three weeks of the uncut version playing in New York’s Waverly Theatre in Greenwich Village, Analysis finally put an ad in the Village Voice announcing that, yes, it’s finally uncut.

The film was recently released on blu-ray and it’s a revelation to see the film as the director intended. It was shot on 16mm and so was originally full frame (4:3). To be able to show it at cinemas the distributor blew it up to 1:85:1 widescreen and, as Henenlotter notes, it made everything look squashed and claustrophobic, whilst also seriously affecting the many night scenes. For the blu-ray transfer the original 16mm negatives were used and the film has never looked better, particularly if, like me, you first saw the film on murky VHS.

This British quad features a surreal background made up of images from the Times Square of the time. There are various genuine brands in there as well as what I assume are fictional ones. I’m pretty sure the unknown artist’s name is one of the signs too, but can’t be certain. Note the cinema hoarding showing the 1971 horror film ‘Let’s Scare Jessica to Death’. The character holding the basket doesn’t look massively like Van Hentenryck but I think this can be forgiven!

The tagline and logo are also undoubted classics and rank up there as some of the best ever to grace British horror posters.

The film’s original trailer is on YouTube.

The Fly / A1 / Hungary

13.01.16

Poster Poster
Title
The Fly
AKA
--
Year of Film
1986
Director
David Cronenberg
Starring
Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis, John Getz
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis, John Getz,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Hungary
Year of Poster
1986
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
22 2/16" x 32 2/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Unique artwork features on this poster for the Hungarian release of David Cronenberg‘s sci-fi classic, The Fly. Loosely based on a 1957 short story of the same name by George Langelaan, which was first adapted for the big screen in 1958, the screenplay was written by Cronenberg himself and based on an initial draft by Charles Edward Pogue. The director rewrote most of the characters and dialogue and added themes of identity, sexuality and body horror with which he’d become synonymous.

Cronenberg cast Jeff Goldblum as the gifted but eccentric scientist Seth Brundle who has secretly been working on teleportation of objects from one place to another instantly. He works for Bartok Science Industries but has been working on a pair of ‘telepods’ at his home laboratory. When he’s introduced to the journalist Veronica Quaife (Geena Davis) at a ‘meet the press’ event he decides to risk taking her to see his work, which he demonstrates by teleporting inanimate objects. Impressed, Veronica agrees to keep quiet in return for exclusive rights to the story.

Soon afterwards the pair start a romantic relationship as Brundle continues to work on the pods. He decides that he wants to have the pods teleport living tissue and eventually manages to do so successfully with a baboon he’s borrowed from his company. Flushed with success Brundle begins drinking and starts to get paranoid that Veronica has rekindled her relationship with her editor and former lover Stathis Borans John Getz. He decides to try teleporting himself but unbeknownst to him a housefly gets inside the pod with him.

He emerges in the other pod seemingly fine and initially feels he’s come out of the pod an ‘improved’ human with higher strength and stamina. However over the following weeks Brundle’s mood becomes highly erratic and he begins a bodily transformation that starts out with unwanted hairs and fingernails falling out but begins to progress into something much more destructive as he realises his pod had been contaminated. The transformation into ‘Brundlefly’ sees the scientist scrambling for a cure before it’s too late, desperately imploring a pregnant Veronica to help him.

Goldblum’s performance was rightly celebrated and it remains one of his most memorable roles to date. The special effects depicting Brundle’s deterioration were executed by Chris Walas‘ company and ended up rightfully winning an Academy Award. The film is as impressive as it was 30 years ago and is definitely one of Cronenberg’s best.

The artwork on this poster depicting a malevolent creature with fly eyes was painted by an unknown artist and also features the telepod that appeared on the US one sheet (though minus the fly’s leg). If anyone has any ideas who was responsible for it please send me an email.

Here’s the film’s original trailer.

A Man Called Dagger / B2 / Japan

28.07.14

Poster Poster
Title
A Man Called Dagger
AKA
--
Year of Film
1967
Director
Richard Rush
Starring
Paul Mantee, Terry Moore, Jan Murray, Sue Ane Langdon, Eileen O'Neill, Maureen Arthur, Leonard Stone, Richard Kiel
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Paul Mantee, Terry Moore, Jan Murray, Sue Ane Langdon, Eileen O'Neill, Maureen Arthur, Leonard Stone, Richard Kiel,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1968
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
20 4/16" x 28 13/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

A relatively obscure spy thriller from 1967, A Man Called Dagger saw limited release around the globe and, as far as I can tell, this Japanese poster is one of the few examples of a theatrical release (I don’t believe the UK was treated to a cinema outing). Originally filmed in 1966, it fell victim to a collapse of relations between its original production company, Lew Horwitz’s Global Screen Associates (GSA), and distributors Cinema Distributors of America. It languished for almost a year before being picked up by MGM. The film is essentially a low-grade James Bond homage (the original title was ‘Why Spy?’) and it’s clear that the original producers wanted to cash in on the global popularity of Ian Fleming’s famous creation.

Richard Rush (most known for 1980’s The Stunt Man) was at the helm and Paul Mantee (a cult figure from his performance in Robinson Crusoe on Mars, 1964) plays the unfortunately monikered Dick Dagger (isn’t that a weapon from David Fincher’s Seven?), a crime-fighting spy who teams up with female agent Harper Davis (Terry Moore) in a bid to track down wheelchair bound Nazi war criminal Rudolph Koffman (Jan Murray). Koffman is holed up in a meat-packing plant and is using less than legal supplies in its production. With several damsels in distress, including Harper, Dagger must his ingenuity and gadgets, including a dodgy laser watch to save the day.

This B2 poster is a combination of the original US one sheet artwork (artist unknown) and a few photographic stills. If you have any idea who is responsible for the artwork please get in touch.

Check out the original trailer on YouTube.

Films By Takeshi Kitano / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Films By Takeshi Kitano
AKA
--
Year of Film
Unknown
Director
Takeshi Kitano
Starring
Various
Origin of Film
Japan
Genre(s) of Film
Various,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
Unknown
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 6/16" x 28 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Akira / Thailand

03.03.16

Poster Poster
Title
Akira
AKA
--
Year of Film
1988
Director
Katsuhiro Ôtomo
Starring
Mitsuo Iwata, Nozomu Sasaki, Mami Koyama
Origin of Film
Japan
Genre(s) of Film
Mitsuo Iwata, Nozomu Sasaki, Mami Koyama,
Type of Poster
Thai
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Thailand
Year of Poster
Unknown
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
21 7/16" x 30 12/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Katsuhiro Ôtomo‘s landmark manga series Akira was adapted into a feature-length anime film in 1988 and directed by Ôtomo himself. The film is set 30 years after an explosion levelled Tokyo and started World War III. Neo-Tokyo eventually rises from the ashes but it is a run-down, seedy city that is ravaged by marauding biker gangs and terrorists. Two members of a biker gang, Akira and his friend Kaneda, come into contact with an esper (a human with special powers, including telepathy) and soon Tetsuo is embroiled in a secret government project known as Akira. Kaneda must set out to stop his friend from triggering another cataclysmic disaster with the help of a trio of espers.

The film adapted most of the first half of the manga and dropped a lot of the content from the second half. It was hailed as a critical success on its release and remains many fans’ favourite anime film. Akira had a huge impact on me when it was shown on the UK’s Channel 4 sometime in the early 1990s. I’d never seen anything quite like it and it opened my eyes to the world of anime films that were slowly being released in the UK, including the likes of Ninja ScrollGhost in the Shell and the great work of Hayao Miyazaki and his Studio Ghibli.

This is the poster for the release of the film in Thailand and features unique artwork painted by a local artist. There is a signature on the poster but I’m unable to read it so if anyone has any idea who painted the artwork please get in touch.

I also have two Japanese B2 posters for the film; style A and style B, the Japanese B1 poster, as well as the American one sheet, and ace illustrator Tyler Stout’s take on the film.

Wild Style / quad / UK

18.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Wild Style
AKA
Graffiti (West Germany)
Year of Film
1983
Director
Charlie Ahearn
Starring
Lee Quinones, Sandra Fabara, Patti Astor, Fab 5 Freddy, Cold Crush Brothers, Rock Steady Crew,, Grandmaster Flash, Busy Bee Grandmixer DST
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Lee Quinones, Sandra Fabara, Patti Astor, Fab 5 Freddy, Cold Crush Brothers, Rock Steady Crew,, Grandmaster Flash, Busy Bee Grandmixer DST,
Type of Poster
Quad
Style of Poster
ICA
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
Unknown
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
28 7/8" x 38 2/8"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
It's the rappin' scratchin' breakin'

Joshua and the Blob / one sheet / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Joshua and the Blob
AKA
--
Year of Film
1972
Director
John C. Lange
Starring
Unknown
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Unknown,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1972
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
27 1/8" x 41 1/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
73/110
Tagline
--

Space Runaway Ideon: Be Invoked / B1 / Japan

16.03.15

Poster Poster
Title
Space Runaway Ideon: Be Invoked
AKA
Densetsu kyojin ideon: Hatsudou-hen (Japan - original title)
Year of Film
1982
Director
Yoshiyuki Tomino
Starring
Yôko Asagami, Yô Inoue, Yoku Shioya, Kaneto Shiozawa, Fuyumi Shiraishi, Hideyuki Tanaka, Nobuo Tanaka, Keiko Toda, Rumiko Ukai
Origin of Film
Japan
Genre(s) of Film
Yôko Asagami, Yô Inoue, Yoku Shioya, Kaneto Shiozawa, Fuyumi Shiraishi, Hideyuki Tanaka, Nobuo Tanaka, Keiko Toda, Rumiko Ukai,
Type of Poster
B1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
28 11/16" x 40 6/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is the Japanese B1 for the release of the second film based on the anime TV series Space Runaway Ideon that was created and directed by Yoshiyuki Tomino, who had previously  worked on the legendary anime Mobile Suit Gundam. Never given an official Western release (to the best of my knowledge) the series plot is summarised on its IMDb page:

It is the year 2300 and on the distant colony world of Solo, a team of archaeologists discover three alien vessels that, when formed together, become a giant fighting robot – The Ideon. However, they come into contact with an alien race known as the Buff Clan, who claim the Ideon’s energy source of Ide as their right. A simple case of fear and mistrust triggers an intergalactic war, with the Ide and the fate of the universe at stake.

According to the series’ Wikipedia page ‘the series originally met with rather low ratings and was cancelled after only 39 of its scheduled 43 episodes aired. As a result, the producers were forced to insert a short segment at the end of the final episode that ended the series in the middle of the action. Demand for a release of the final unaired episodes followed the show’s cancellation, and two movies were produced to end the series.

The two movies, A Contact and Be Invoked, were produced by both Sanrio and Sunrise and released as a double bill by Shochiku in 1982. A Contact featured clips from the first 32 episodes of the TV series interspersed with newly animated footage. In addition a few new scenes, the movie also created new death scenes for character such as Damido, Mayaya and Daram. Be Invoked featured a modified version of the final episode of the TV series (removing the ending sequence), in addition to those episodes that never aired, finishing off the Ideon saga once and for all.’

There is a signature on this art but I can’t read it so if anyone has any idea who should received credit for this please get in touch.

The Giant Spider Invasion / one sheet / Turkey

17.05.11

Poster Poster

Lost Highway / one sheet / UK

10.04.15

Poster Poster
Title
Lost Highway
AKA
--
Year of Film
1997
Director
David Lynch
Starring
Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette, Balthazar Getty, Robert Loggia, Robert Blake, Jack Nance
Origin of Film
France | USA
Genre(s) of Film
Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette, Balthazar Getty, Robert Loggia, Robert Blake, Jack Nance,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
1997
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is the scarce UK one sheet for the release of David Lynch‘s mystery thriller Lost Highway. Co-written with American author Barry Gifford, whose novel Lynch adapted for his 1990 film Wild at Heart, the film is a classic Lynchian mind-bender that resolutely defies explanation. The story begins with Bill Pullman as Fred Madison, a Jazz saxophonist who is living with his wife Renee (Patricia Arquette) in Los Angeles. One day the intercom to his flat buzzes and when he answers it an unknown man says “Dick Laurent is dead.” The man is nowhere to be seen when Fred looks out of his window, but a few days later a mysterious tape appears on the Madison’s doorstep. The video features shaky footage outside their flat and over the next few days more tapes appear that eventually move inside and show the pair sleeping, much to their horror.

At a party Fred meets a mysterious man (played by Robert Blake in his final film role) who, in a memorably creepy sequence, tells Fred that he’s at his flat at that moment and proves it by getting him to call his home phone, which the stranger then answers. The next morning another tape appears and Fred is horrified to see it’s footage of him covered in blood with a dismembered Renee next to him. He is arrested, charged with murder and sentenced to death. Whilst on death row Fred sees strange visions and starts to suffer from painful headaches before he inexplicably morphs into another person, a car mechanic called Pete Dayton (Balthazar Getty) much to the confusion of the prison staff. Because Pete has committed no crime, he is released into the care of his parents and, after a period of adjustment, he gets back to his job. The rest of the film sees Pete dealing with the menacing gangster Mr Eddy (a memorable performance by Robert Loggia) and a mysterious blonde called Alice Wakefield (Arquette) who takes him down a dark path which has the mystery man waiting at the end of it.

Lynch and Gifford have always refused to fully explain the story but that hasn’t stopped fans of the film from trying to decode its many mysteries. Check out this IMDb page for some of the theories but the film definitely encourages you to draw your own conclusions after the credits roll. Lost Highway features a number of notable performances, particularly from Pullman and Arquette, as well as multiple cameos from the likes of Richard Pryor, Jack Nance and Marilyn Manson. Filled with memorable Lynchian imagery, including one of the most shocking accidental deaths in cinema history (Michael Massee‘s head meets glass table), it also has a brilliant soundtrack complemented by some of Lynch’s very best sound design.

This poster is very similar to the international one sheet but has the yellow blocky type that can be seen on the UK quad. I’m not sure who is responsible for the design of this one sheet or the quad so please get in touch if you have any ideas.

Gymkata / one sheet / USA

24.04.15

Poster Poster
Title
Gymkata
AKA
Asia Mission (Germany)
Year of Film
1985
Director
Robert Clouse
Starring
Kurt Thomas, Tetchie Agbayani, Richard Norton, Edward Bell, John Barrett, Conan Lee, Bob Schott
Origin of Film
USA | Japan
Genre(s) of Film
Kurt Thomas, Tetchie Agbayani, Richard Norton, Edward Bell, John Barrett, Conan Lee, Bob Schott,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1985
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
27" x 40 15/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
850047
Tagline
A new kind of martial arts combat! The skill of gymnastics. The kill of karate!

‘The skill of gymnastics. The kill of karate!’ – the tagline says it all on this US one sheet for the ill-advised martial arts clunker Gymkata, starring the American Olympic gymnast Kurt Thomas who won a string of medals towards the end of the 1980s. Thomas stars as Jonathan Cabot, a champion gymnast who is approached by the fictional Special Intelligence Agency (SIA) to take part in ‘The Game’. Held in the small fictional nation of Parmistan, The Game is a sort of decathlon with extra threats coming from Parmistan warriors who are pursuing the participants at all times. The winner of the event is granted their life and also a single wish, which the SIA want Cabot to use to request that the king of Parmistan allow them to set up a ‘Star Wars’ satellite monitoring station in the country (some premise!)

The film is quite the experience with several unintentionally hilarious sequences and consistently terrible acting throughout. This YouTube video features most of the ‘highlights’ from the film and hopefully gives you an idea of what you’re in for if you’ve not seen it. One particular sequence, known as ‘the village of the crazies’ has to be seen to be believed (YouTube link). Poor Kurt Thomas only appeared in a couple of other long-forgotten roles but his work in the world of gymnastics continues to this day. The director of the film Robert Clouse, of Enter the Dragon fame, probably should have known better, but it’s easy to see why producers chose him to helm the film.

Rather brilliantly, the ninjas featured on this one sheet don’t actually appear in the film itself and the intention was clearly to try and tempt fans of the then popular ninja sub-genre of martial arts films (with titles like American Ninja) I’m unsure who was responsible for the art so if you have any ideas please get in touch.

Parasomnia / one sheet / pre-release style / USA

29.04.15

Poster Poster
Title
Parasomnia
AKA
--
Year of Film
2008
Director
William Malone
Starring
Dylan Purcell, Patrick Kilpatrick, Jeffrey Combs, Cherilyn Wilson, Timothy Bottoms, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Sean Young, Brennan Bailey, Madison Davenport, Jeff Doucette
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Dylan Purcell, Patrick Kilpatrick, Jeffrey Combs, Cherilyn Wilson, Timothy Bottoms, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Sean Young, Brennan Bailey, Madison Davenport, Jeff Doucette,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Pre-release for festivals
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
2008
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
27" x 39"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
Dreams of the sleepwalker

You’d be forgiven for thinking this poster was advertising a film from the 1980s but it is actually an early pre-release/festival poster for the 2008 independent horror Parasomnia. Written and directed by William Malone, who is probably best known as the director of the 1999 remake of House on Haunted Hill, the film is a horror thriller that centres on Laura Baxter (Cherilyn Wilson), a young woman who suffers from the titular condition. Since a childhood accident Laura has been unable to stay awake for longer than a few minutes and has been kept in a hospital’s psychiatric ward for a number of years.

When art student Danny Sloan (Dylan Purcell) visits his friend in the drug rehab wing of the same hospital he is encouraged to sneak into the psychiatric ward to take a look at notorious serial killer Byron Volpe (Patrick Kilpatrick). Volpe is kept chained in a padded cell after being convicted of killing his wife Madeline (Sean Young) and he is thought to have powers of hypnotism so strong that he has a black bag over his head at all times. Danny sneaks a look at Volpe and then notices Laura in a room nearby and soon becomes obsessed with her. When he learns that she’s to be moved to a clinic to be part of an experiment he breaks her out of hospital, but what he doesn’t realise is that Volpe has infiltrated Laura’s mind and when his neighbour is brutally murdered he sets out to try and put a stop to Volpe. Danny underestimates the killer’s powers and soon Volpe is on the run and looking for Laura.

The film is certainly stylish with some macabre sequences, particularly the nightmarish dreamscapes that were apparently influenced by the director’s love for the surrealist painter Zdzisław Beksiński. The film received a full release at the US cinema with a different poster to this one but was a straight to video release in most other countries. Malone has not directed another feature film since this one.

I’ve been unable to discover who painted the artwork on this pre-release one sheet so if you have any ideas please get in touch. The only reference information that I could find was this page on Cinema Secrets that reveals there was a version of the artwork that featured nudity.

Erik the Viking / one sheet / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Erik the Viking
AKA
--
Year of Film
1989
Director
Terry Jones
Starring
Tim Robbins, Terry Jones, John Cleese, Gary Cady, Eartha Kitt, Mickey Rooney, Imogen Stubbs, John Gordon Sinclair, Samantha Bond, Antony Sher, Tim McInnerny
Origin of Film
UK | Sweden
Genre(s) of Film
Tim Robbins, Terry Jones, John Cleese, Gary Cady, Eartha Kitt, Mickey Rooney, Imogen Stubbs, John Gordon Sinclair, Samantha Bond, Antony Sher, Tim McInnerny,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1989
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
27" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
890051
Tagline
A fun trip through the dark ages

The Howling / one sheet / USA

27.07.15

Poster Poster
Title
The Howling
AKA
--
Year of Film
1981
Director
Joe Dante
Starring
Dee Wallace, Patrick Macnee, Dennis Dugan, Christopher Stone, Belinda Balaski, Kevin McCarthy, John Carradine, Slim Pickens, Elisabeth Brooks, Robert Picardo, Dick Miller
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Dee Wallace, Patrick Macnee, Dennis Dugan, Christopher Stone, Belinda Balaski, Kevin McCarthy, John Carradine, Slim Pickens, Elisabeth Brooks, Robert Picardo, Dick Miller,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1981
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
27 2/16" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
810045
Tagline
Imagine your worst fear a reality.

One of two werewolf themed horrors to be released in 1981, Joe Dante‘s The Howling beat John Landis’ An American Werewolf in London to cinemas by a few months, but both would go on to be cult classics of the genre, even if the latter film won more critical plaudits at the time of its release. Despite hugely different storylines each film features a memorable werewolf transformation scene and The Howling’s one was created by noted practical effects specialist Rob Bottin (The Thing, Robocop), which was his first solo effort away from his mentor Rick Baker. Although he had initially started work on The Howling, Baker had decided to leave the production to work on Landis’ film and handed the reigns over to Bottin. The results are definitely impressive and were certainly groundbreaking for the time, however Baker’s handiwork on AWIL is unforgettable and impressed the judges of the Academy Awards so much that he won the Outstanding Achievement in Makeup in its inaugural year.

Very loosely based on the novel of the same name by Gary Brandner, The Howling’s script was worked on by two screenwriters before Dante brought in John Sayles, with whom he collaborated on 1978’s Piranha to write a third draft. The film begins as the investigative TV report Karen White (Dee Wallace) is on her way to meet the serial murderer Eddie Quist (Robert Picardo) at a sleazy LA porn store as part of a police sting operation. After entering a booth, Karen is surprised by Eddie who is standing behind her and forces her to watch a porno of a young woman being attacked. Karen turns to look at Eddie and her screams attract nearby police officers who shoot and apparently kill him. Severely traumatised by the event and suffering from hallucinatory flashbacks, Karen’s therapist Dr Waggner (Patrick Macnee) refers her to a secluded retreat on the Californian coast called The Colony.

Karen travels there with her boyfriend Bill played by the late Christopher Stone, who was Dee Wallace’s boyfriend at the time and later married her (Stone sadly passed away from a heart attack in 1995), and the pair are welcomed by the residents of the camp, which is made up of several log cabins in a forest near the coast. One night Bill is out for a walk and is attacked and bitten by a werewolf, which is actually Marsha Quist (Elisabeth Brooks) a sultry nymphomaniac who has been at the Colony for months. Later she accosts Bill and the pair make love in the forest as they transform into werewolves together. Karen suspects all is not right and invites her friend Teri (Belinda Balaski), another reporter who is looking into Eddie Quist and has discovered that his body is missing from the morgue, out to visit her. Soon after arriving Teri is attacked and killed by Eddie whom she watches transform into a wolf (with Rob Bottin’s help) and before long Karen discovers the true secret of the Colony. Teri’s partner Chris (Dennis Dugan) comes to Karen’s rescue clutching a rifle loaded with silver bullets.

The film was made on a low budget (circa $1m) and was a commercial success around the globe, making tens of millions of dollars. It inevitably spawned a number of significantly less interesting sequels, starting with 1985’s ‘Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf’. Joe Dante believes that Steven Spielberg saw the film at the cinema and subsequently offered him the directorial job on the cult classic Gremlins (1984).

Despite The Howling’s relatively high profile I’ve been unable to identify the artist responsible for the artwork on this US one sheet, which was also used as the marketing art in several other countries. If anyone has any ideas please get in touch. Note that this particular poster is discoloured somewhat as it is meant to be more orange/yellow in tone, and I believe it’s the result of an error during printing. It’s not the first one sheet for the Howling that I’ve seen with this discolouration and at least three can be seen in emovieposter’s past sales history of the poster. I suspect that a batch of the posters fell victim to an issue with blue/green inks at the time of printing.

King Kong Lives / B0 / Japan

26.06.15

Poster Poster
Title
King Kong 2
AKA
King Kong Lives (USA / UK)
Year of Film
1986
Director
John Guillermin
Starring
Peter Elliott, George Yiasoumi, Brian Kerwin, Linda Hamilton, John Ashton, Peter Michael Goetz, Frank Maraden
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Peter Elliott, George Yiasoumi, Brian Kerwin, Linda Hamilton, John Ashton, Peter Michael Goetz, Frank Maraden,
Type of Poster
B0
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1986
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
39 6/16" x 55 9/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

King Kong Lives is the critically-mauled and commercially disastrous sequel to the ill-advised 1976 remake of the classic big ape monster movie, which was shepherded into life by the legendary Italian producer Dino De Laurentiis. I’m not entirely sure why a decade passed before this sequel was put into production, but both De Laurentiis (or at least his company DEG) and director John Guillermin returned and definitely shouldn’t have bothered. The gap is explained in the film by having Kong in a 10 year coma following his fall from the World Trade Center at the end of the previous film.

Linda Hamilton (who should have known better) stars as Dr. Amy Franklin who is attempting to perform a heart transplant with an electronic replacement but Kong has lost too much blood for the operation to proceed. Luckily the adventurer Hank Mitchell (Brian Kerwin) finds and captures another giant ape in the jungles of Borneo and brings it to the US so that the operation can go ahead. It turns out that the new ape is a female and once Kong’s heart is replaced it’s not long before he escapes with ‘Lady Kong’ and chaos ensues. Unfortunately, despite the premise, the entire cast looks as if they’d rather be somewhere else and the shoddy effects can’t paper over the cracks.

This artwork appears on the Japanese B1 and B0 posters. The B0 size of poster is typically used in larger cinemas and in advertising spots in the Tokyo metro. I’ve struggled to find out who the artist is for this poster so please get in touch if you have an idea. There are also two B2 posters for the film (style A and style B).

The Day Of The Jackal / B2 / target style / Japan

09.09.15

Poster Poster

A striking design on this Japanese B2 for the release of the 1974 thriller The Day of the Jackal, which was based on the 1971 novel of the same name by the English author Frederick Forsyth. The story is set in 1962 and focuses on a fictional assassination attempt on France’s then president Charles de Gaulle who had angered many in his own country by deciding to grant independence to the French colony of Algeria. An underground resistance group called the OAS had formed to fight this decision and both the novel and the film start with a real incident in which de Gaulle’s car had been sprayed with machine gun fire, but he had miraculously survived unscathed. In the film the OAS decide to cut their losses and hire a professional assassin. They settle on an Englishman (played by Edward Foxwho decides on the call sign ‘Jackal’.

The film follows The Jackal as he prepares for the assassination by traveling all over Europe to procure identity documents, a special weapon, and other items necessary for the task. The French authorities become aware that someone has been hired for the job and appoint ‘France’s best detective, Lebel (Michael Lonsdale, best known for his role as the villain in Moonraker), to lead the hunt for him. Lebel calls in favours from all over Europe in the hunt and eventually they strike it lucky with enquiries by Scotland Yard in the UK. The film ratchets up the tension as the French authorities close in on The Jackal, but he manages to evade them long enough to line de Gaulle up in his sights. 

The film is almost two and a half hours long but maintains a brisk pace and is certainly thrilling throughout. It makes brilliant use of real locations and the Wikipedia page for the film points out some of the places the production visited. The film was very well critically acclaimed but failed to perform as spectacularly at the box-office as some had hoped, something later blamed on the fact that the lead was the then unknown Fox.

This is one of two styles of Japanese posters for the film and I also have the ‘face’ style, which can be seen here.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre / one sheet / 1980 re-release / USA

09.06.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
AKA
Headcheese, Leatherface (working titles) | Non aprite quella porta [Don't Open That Door] (Italy)
Year of Film
1974
Director
Tobe Hooper
Starring
Marilyn Burns, Allen Danziger, Paul A. Partain, William Vail, Teri McMinn, Edwin Neal, Jim Siedow, Gunnar Hansen, John Dugan
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Marilyn Burns, Allen Danziger, Paul A. Partain, William Vail, Teri McMinn, Edwin Neal, Jim Siedow, Gunnar Hansen, John Dugan,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Re-release
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1980
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 41" 1/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
Who will survive and what will be left of them? | America's most bizarre and brutal crimes!... | What happened is true. Now the motion picture that's just as real.

One of the best horror films of all time has a poster featuring one of the best taglines of all time. 37 years on, the film has lost none of its raw, brutal power and the US one sheet must have left cinema-goers in no doubt as to the movie they were about to watch. It’s interesting that the decision was made to reveal the (subsequently) iconic Leatherface on the poster and not leave his introduction to the film itself.

This version of the poster was for the 1980 re-release of the film by New Line Cinema. They obtained the rights from the (then) bankrupt Bryanston Distributing Company who originally released the film in 1974. The first release poster is practically identical to this one with the only notable difference being the copyright notice in the bottom left and the lack of an NSS number and blurb on the re-release.

Some more information on the Bryanston/New Line change from IMDB:

“The film’s original distributor was Bryanston Distribution Company, in fact a Mafia front operated by Louis “Butchie” Peraino, who used the movie to launder profits he made from Deep Throat (1972). In return, the production received only enough money to reimburse the investors and pay the cast and crew $405 a piece. The producers eventually discovered that Peraino had lied to them about the film’s profits; after Peraino was arrested on obscenity charges when his role in Deep Throat was revealed, the cast and crew filed a suit against him and were awarded $25,000 each. New Line Cinema, which obtained the rights to “Chain Saw” from the bankrupt Bryanston, paid the cast and crew as part of the purchase agreement.”

The original trailer can be watched here.

The Boy Who Cried Werewolf / 30×40 / USA

26.01.15

Poster Poster
Title
The Boy Who Cried Werewolf
AKA
--
Year of Film
1973
Director
Nathan Juran
Starring
Kerwin Mathews, Elaine Devry, Scott Sealey, Robert J. Wilke, Susan Foster, Jack Lucas, Bob Homel, George Gaynes
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kerwin Mathews, Elaine Devry, Scott Sealey, Robert J. Wilke, Susan Foster, Jack Lucas, Bob Homel, George Gaynes,
Type of Poster
30x40
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1973
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
30" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
73/229
Tagline
Possible in this day and age? Those who didn't believe... are dead!

A little-seen horror from 1973, The Boy Who Cried Werewolf was the last film that director Nathan H. Juran (Attack of the 50 Foot WomanThe 7th Voyage of Sinbad) worked on and it paired him for the final time with leading actor Kerwin Mathews who was a regular collaborator (he played Sinbad, for example). The plot sees Mathews play Robert, a divorced father who takes his estranged son Richie (Scott Sealey) to the family’s holiday mountain cabin for a short break. Whilst walking in the woods at night the pair are attacked by a werewolf and during the struggle Rob is bitten before the beast falls down a ravine and is impaled on a fence.

When they discover the body it has changed back to a man whom the local police don’t recognise. Richie’s insistence that it was a werewolf is laughed off by his father and the police and later his mother speaks to a psychologist who suggests the boy is struggling to accept that he witnessed his father killing someone and is making up a fantastic story to cope with the situation. The psychologist then recommends Robert and Richie return to the cabin to help with the healing process, but they happen to visit during the next full-moon cycle and that bite comes back to haunt Robert and Richie. Will anyone believe the boy before it’s too late?

It seems like the film was given a limited release and this is the 30×40 poster which will have been used for the film’s showing in venues like drive-ins and larger cinemas. It was also given a UK release as a double-bill with the creature feature ‘Sssss‘, that was out the same year. The film has never been officially released on DVD and is hard to track down, should you wish to watch it.

I’m unsure who is responsible for the artwork on this poster so if you have any ideas please get in touch.

 

 

Gamera 2: Attack of the Legion / B1 / Japan

06.07.15

Poster Poster
Title
Gamera 2: Attack of the Legion
AKA
Gamera 2: Region shurai (Japan - original English title)
Year of Film
1996
Director
Shûsuke Kaneko
Starring
Toshiyuki Nagashima, Miki Mizuno, Tamotsu Ishibashi, Mitsuru Fukikoshi, Ayako Fujitani, Hiroyuki Okita, Yûsuke Kawazu, Yukijirô Hotaru, Hatsunori Hasegawa
Origin of Film
Japan
Genre(s) of Film
Toshiyuki Nagashima, Miki Mizuno, Tamotsu Ishibashi, Mitsuru Fukikoshi, Ayako Fujitani, Hiroyuki Okita, Yûsuke Kawazu, Yukijirô Hotaru, Hatsunori Hasegawa,
Type of Poster
B1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1996
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
28 12/16" x 40 7/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Gamera 2: Attack of the Legion is actually the 10th film to star the turtle-esque daikaiju (giant monster). The first film in the Showa period, entitled simply Gamera, was filmed in black and white in 1965 and released a year later in the US as ‘Gammera the Invincible’. Subsequent films during the Showa period were all ‘Gamera vs…’ a different kaiju and ended with Gamera: Super Monster. Fifteen years later the series was rebooted during the current Heisei period with Gamera: Guardian of the Universe.  Attack of the Legion is set a year after the events of the last film and begins with a meteor crashing into a mountainside that is carrying swarms of an insect-like extraterrestrial.

Soon after the city of Sapporo is covered with strange plants and it becomes clear that the creatures are nesting underneath the city and encouraging them to grow into a giant flower in order to form a kind of launchpad for another meteor-like spore to be blasted into space so they can colonise another world. Just before the creatures are able to trigger a launch explosion that would flatten the city, Gamera flies in and tears the flower out by its roots. Soon he is battling the smaller creatures, which a soldier nicknames Legion (after the Biblical demon army), as well as a gigantic queen which bursts out of the ground and flies off to try and create a nest in another city. Before long Tokyo is being threatened by the creatures and Gamera is all that stands in the way.

The film was a critical success in Japan and was followed in 1999 by a sequel called Gamera 3: Awakening of Irys.

I’m unsure who is responsible for this artwork but I’m confident that it’s not Noriyoshi Ohrai, who painted several fantastic Godzilla posters. If anyone has any ideas please get in touch.

 

The Thing / daybill / Australia

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Thing
AKA
John Carpenter's The Thing (USA - complete title) | Stvor (Serbia)
Year of Film
1982
Director
John Carpenter
Starring
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney,
Type of Poster
Daybill
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Australia
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
13" x 30"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
The ultimate in alien terror. | Man is The Warmest Place to Hide.

Nightwing / one sheet / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Nightwing
AKA
--
Year of Film
1979
Director
Arthur Hiller
Starring
Nick Mancuso, David Warner, Kathryn Harrold, Stephen Macht, Ben Piazza, Strother Martin, George Clutesi
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Nick Mancuso, David Warner, Kathryn Harrold, Stephen Macht, Ben Piazza, Strother Martin, George Clutesi,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1979
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
27" x 41 1/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
790065
Tagline
The day belongs to man. The night is theirs.