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Death Wish / 30×40 / USA

24.03.14

Poster Poster
Title
Death Wish
AKA
Il giustiziere della notte [The vigilante of the night] (Italy)
Year of Film
1974
Director
Michael Winner
Starring
Charles Bronson, Hope Lange, Vincent Gardenia, Steven Keats, William Redfield
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Charles Bronson, Hope Lange, Vincent Gardenia, Steven Keats, William Redfield,
Type of Poster
30x40
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1974
Designer
Diener-Hauser
Artist
--
Size (inches)
30" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
74/225
Tagline
Vigilante, city style - judge, jury and executioner.

This is the original US 30×40 poster for the release of director Michael Winner‘s infamous Death Wish, the good-guy-turned-vigilante flick that marked a turning point in star Charles Bronson‘s career, launching him to international stardom and establishing his brand as a tough-guy leading man. Based on the novel of the same name by Brian Garfield, the original script by Wendell Mayes went through multiple revisions and the film itself was in protracted development before it was handed to Winner who was chosen thanks to his track record with gritty thrillers, including The Mechanic  and The Stone Killer, both starring Bronson. Winner pushed to get the star onboard but his agent’s concerns about the content and the script’s description of the main character as a meek accountant meant negotiations stalled.

Eventually the film passed into the hands of legendary producer Dino De Laurentiis who, after securing distribution and financing, requested script revisions that made the role more suitable for Bronson, plus Winner tweaked a few scenes that meant upping the violence. Filming eventually took place in New York City during the winter of 1973-74. Bronson plays architect Paul Kersey whose wife and daughter are viciously attacked one day in their apartment with his wife later dying from her injuries and the daughter being left in a catatonic state.

After the funeral, Kersey flies to Arizona to meet a business client and before leaving a few weeks later he is given a Colt revolver as a gift. One night following his return to New York he is approached by a mugger who attempts to rob him, but Kersey pulls his own gun and shoots him dead. Although initially sick that he killed another human, Kersey’s motivation for revenge gets the better of him and he deliberately starts to put himself at risk by walking around the city at night looking for criminals and the body count starts to mount.  Unbeknownst to Kersey, the police are starting to close in and it’s not long before his risk taking catches up with him.

The film was savaged by most critics on release for what they saw as its celebration of vigilante violence, with some calling it an ‘immoral threat to society’ and voicing concerns that it would encourage similar behaviour in society. It was, however, a box office success and audiences responded positively amidst a climate of rising violence on American streets. The film spawned four sequels all starring Bronson, and all of steadily diminishing quality, although the first film definitely still has a cult following forty years later.

This poster was designed by the now defunct American advertising agency Diener-Hauser who were responsible for a number of iconic 197os one sheets, including ChinatownThe Towering Inferno and Saturday Night Fever.

The Last Flight of Noah’s Ark / one sheet / USA

22.01.14

Poster Poster
Title
The Last Flight of Noah's Ark
AKA
--
Year of Film
1980
Director
Charles Jarrott
Starring
Elliott Gould, Geneviève Bujold, Ricky Schroder, Vincent Gardenia, Tammy Lauren, John Fujioka, Yuki Shimoda, John P. Ryan, Dana Elcar
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Elliott Gould, Geneviève Bujold, Ricky Schroder, Vincent Gardenia, Tammy Lauren, John Fujioka, Yuki Shimoda, John P. Ryan, Dana Elcar,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1980
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Dan Goozee
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
800063
Tagline
Lost. 2000 miles at sea in a 40 year old bomber.

A little-seen live-action Disney production, The Last Flight of Noah’s Ark stars Elliott Gould as Noah Dugan, a jaded pilot with gambling debts who agrees to fly an ageing B-29 bomber to a remote South Pacific island. The plane is filled with a cargo of animals and a missionary called Bernadette Lafleur (played by French-Canadian actress (Geneviève Bujold). Just before the flight takes off, a pair of young orphans who the missionary has been caring for sneak onboard because they don’t want to be parted from the animals.

When the plane goes badly off course Dugan is forced to crash land on an uncharted island. After surviving the landing, the group discover that a pair of Japanese soldiers have been guarding the island for 35 years, believing that World War II is still ongoing. After initial hostilities, they eventually befriend the castaways and agree to help them convert the plane into a raft to sail back to civilisation. The group soon set off on the perilous voyage with the surviving animals onboard.

The film received mixed reviews and failed to gain much traction at the box office. Whilst it did receive a brief cinema release in the UK and a release on VHS back in the early 1980s, it has been unavailable since then.

The artwork is by American poster artist Dan Goozee who was also responsible for a few Bond posters, including Moonraker and Octopussy, as well as several other classic posters from the 1980s. The other designs I’ve collected by him can be seen here.

Death Wish II / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Death Wish II
AKA
Death Wish 2 (alt. spelling)
Year of Film
1982
Director
Michael Winner
Starring
Charles Bronson, Jill Ireland, Vincent Gardenia, J.D. Cannon, Anthony Franciosa, Ben Frank, Robin Sherwood, Silvana Gallardo, Robert F. Lyons, Michael Prince
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Charles Bronson, Jill Ireland, Vincent Gardenia, J.D. Cannon, Anthony Franciosa, Ben Frank, Robin Sherwood, Silvana Gallardo, Robert F. Lyons, Michael Prince,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 6/16" x 28 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Death Wish / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Death Wish
AKA
Il giustiziere della notte [The vigilante of the night] (Italy)
Year of Film
1974
Director
Michael Winner
Starring
Charles Bronson, Hope Lange, Vincent Gardenia, Steven Keats, William Redfield
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Charles Bronson, Hope Lange, Vincent Gardenia, Steven Keats, William Redfield,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1974
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 5/16" x 28 11/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Death Wish / A1 / Germany

26.09.14

Poster Poster
Title
Death Wish
AKA
Ein Mann sieht rot (Germany) | Il giustiziere della notte [The vigilante of the night] (Italy)
Year of Film
1974
Director
Michael Winner
Starring
Charles Bronson, Hope Lange, Vincent Gardenia, Steven Keats, William Redfield
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Charles Bronson, Hope Lange, Vincent Gardenia, Steven Keats, William Redfield,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Germany
Year of Poster
1974
Designer
Gerold Kratzsch
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
23 7/16" x 33 1/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is the original German A1 poster for the release of director Michael Winner‘s infamous Death Wish, the good-guy-turned-vigilante flick that marked a turning point in star Charles Bronson‘s career, launching him to international stardom and establishing his brand as a tough-guy leading man. Based on the novel of the same name by Brian Garfield, the original script by Wendell Mayes went through multiple revisions and the film itself was in protracted development before it was handed to Winner who was chosen thanks to his track record with gritty thrillers, including The Mechanic  and The Stone Killer, both starring Bronson. Winner pushed to get the star onboard but his agent’s concerns about the content and the script’s description of the main character as a meek accountant meant negotiations stalled.

Eventually the film passed into the hands of legendary producer Dino De Laurentiis who, after securing distribution and financing, requested script revisions that made the role more suitable for Bronson, plus Winner tweaked a few scenes that meant upping the violence. Filming eventually took place in New York City during the winter of 1973-74. Bronson plays architect Paul Kersey whose wife and daughter are viciously attacked one day in their apartment with his wife later dying from her injuries and the daughter being left in a catatonic state.

After the funeral, Kersey flies to Arizona to meet a business client and before leaving a few weeks later he is given a Colt revolver as a gift. One night following his return to New York he is approached by a mugger who attempts to rob him, but Kersey pulls his own gun and shoots him dead. Although initially sick that he killed another human, Kersey’s motivation for revenge gets the better of him and he deliberately starts to put himself at risk by walking around the city at night looking for criminals and the body count starts to mount.  Unbeknownst to Kersey, the police are starting to close in and it’s not long before his risk taking catches up with him.

The film was savaged by most critics on release for what they saw as its celebration of vigilante violence, with some calling it an ‘immoral threat to society’ and voicing concerns that it would encourage similar behaviour in society. It was, however, a box office success and audiences responded positively amidst a climate of rising violence on American streets. The film spawned four sequels all starring Bronson, and all of steadily diminishing quality, although the first film definitely still has a cult following forty years later.

According to the credit on the lower left hand side of the poster it was designed by the Gerold Kratzsch advertising agency who appear to have been based in Berlin in Germany (I don’t believe they still exist).