Despite all the access movies tend to give in hyping up their releases, there’s still nothing like the classic movie one sheet, a teaser that hopes to encapsulate the film and draw enough interest with some captivating imagery to get people in theater. While many posters simply rely on a famous face to get the job done, many get creative and take things to the next level. Here are 16 of them for 2016.
The one sheet has changed a lot in the decades since their inception, and as social media pushes studios to be far more transparent than ever, the poster still remains the first gate in getting to know what is coming. They are also a time-honored tradition and as such, one many look forward to seeing. Here are 16 of the best from 2016.
Keeping a hint of magic in the air, this poster is a great little teaser, hinting at what the titular dragon will look like while giving the woods both a welcoming and ethereal feel. Notice too how Pete himself is just peeking out, a clue to the boy's own reservations about being found. A bold, gorgeous one sheet, split by an enormous tree, this captivates and had us exploring the corners for more. Job well done. Good movie, too.
Matt Damon had two movies recently with posters that feature tight close-ups of his face, including last year's The Martian and this bold black and white ditty for the latest entry in the Bourne franchise. While the film is a mess and is a major letdown, this simple, jarring image with a streak of light revealing an emerging hero is incredibly effective. While it gives us a strikingly good look at the older, more weathered Bourne, a bold statement that refuses to even say the movie's name is pure genius and worked in luring audiences into theaters.
This obscure film about a young nun with a dark past returning home to a brother traumatized by war is a sold little gem and the film's poster is a creative bit of marketing that does away with the usual glossy headshot of a its star, instead giving us a painted representation, which fits the theme perfectly, starting off with that head of pink hair. The contrasting "faiths" of Goth and God are well-imagined here and the image works well in creating interest in the story.
While the film itself was a terrible misjudgment and critical disappointment, this international poster is a sensational piece of work, capturing the unease and psychological horror far better than the film does on its own. A visual metaphor of the very roots of an evil that possesses a young woman, set in front of strangely inviting black abyss, this promises something the film ultimately can't deliver.
A clever film idea with a decidedly contemporary theme involving an internet game that is manipulated by those watching it online, the poster is much more successful than the film itself. Reading is automatic for those that can and by flipping all the words on this image we are even more drawn to them, forcing us to explore the poster with greater effort. It's a cool gimmick that work really well, not too mention the great use of color and those haunting eyes. We want to play.
Another video game to movie adaptation that failed to make it work, this theatrical poster is a beautiful representation of expectation, made by people who fully understand what the game it is based on means to the players who made it a success. From the time period to the dive itself, this perfectly-composed one sheet packs a terrific punch, even if the film didn't. From knives out to the blood-red sash, this looks as if it could just as easily be the box art for a new game. Too bad it wasn't.
Kubo and the Two Strings
Laika animation films are always a thing to behold, stop-motion movies that inspire and stir as well as entertain. This international one sheet is nothing like what the film looks like of course, but at the same time wonderfully captures much of the feel, tone, and sense of lore, not to mention the grand adventure that lies ahead. The bold, two-color use and the traditional art style from which the film draws inspiration conjure a fountain of curiosity that matched the wonder of the movie.
Jane Got A Gun
This early 2016 release came and went with a whimper but was a pretty decent movie, though the poster is the real winner, a visually contrasting image that feels a bit like a cross between a classic old western Wanted poster and a daguerreotype. The sharp angles, opposing pistols, Jane's prominence, and that sepia saturation spring this poster to life. And is it just us, or is it kinda sexy, too? Powerful women are awesome.
There are only a handful of movies that have enough clout to do what the makers of this film knew they had in designing the theatrical poster, and that's putting up a logo and skipping the movie title all together. By giving the old standard Ghostbuster design a slight upgrade and splashing it big across a smokey blue background, there was only one thing to ask: Who you gonna call? In creating anticipation, no other movie in 2016 had has much and the release of this image was all the filmmakers needed to do in generating an avalanche of media hysteria. That's a win.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
The modern superhero movie poster is mostly a collection of stylized character images now, releasing numerous images for a single movie. For this follow-up to Man of Steel, more than a dozen official posters were made but it's this one that has the most impact, a simple, balanced image that pits the two iconic character face-to-face with their logos blended, hinting that no matter the title, they will come together. Whatever your opinion of the movie, this poster is a good one, and like many on this list, foregoes giving us the name of the movie.
While the long-awaited sequel to the classic Pixar film Finding Nemo met with mixed reactions, there's no taking away from the stunning first poster, a pitch-perfect swath of ocean blue and a decidedly familiar tail with a callback to a single line of dialogue from the original that had everyone swimming in anticipation. It's simplicity is deceiving as it works to illicit a number of emotional memories and tease to a new adventure. You can't help but want to swim to the border and follow that little fish.
This live-action adaptation of the beloved book of the same name wasn't the blockbuster many thought it might be, which is too bad because the film is a wonder and so is this theatrical poster that perfectly captures the sense of awe and magic that is about to befall the little girl up on her toes and the people watching. The image makes it clear that this is no giant to fear and that to get the most of this movie, you need to let your imagination soar. That's surely stamped on director Steven Spielberg's business card.
Look at this poster. Just when you thought there was no creativity left in advertising a film, we get this. The movie is about a traveling band who get a gig in a very bad place and end up in a fight for their lives. The poster plays with two tropes, one, the horror genre and the machete-wielding antagonist and the other, a play on the classic London Calling album cover by The Clash. This is a spine-tinglingly good one sheet with its appropriate green tones and savage sense of evil and black comedy. It's also a great little movie.
10 Cloverfield Lane
A follow-up of sorts to the 2008 monster movie Cloverfield, this tense thriller set in a subterranean bunker is full of twists and misdirections, and while it had many guessing what it was going to be about before release, this insanely clever poster is so simple and yet so effective, it's basically a seed factory for fan theories. And while the movie explains everything away, the one sheet remains a terrific visual for both the setting and the proverbial rabbit's hole we as an audience are bound to fall into as we watch.
La La Land
Our love for this film has no bounds, but it extends to this incredibly provocative one sheet as well, that says everything you need to know about what to expect with a simple pose and an iconic lamppost. Harking back to the glory days of musicals, most notably Singin' In The Rain, this striking image just oozes style and makes it clear that this movie is going to be a whole lot different from everything else in the cineplex. From the dream-inducing swath of stars to the titular city below to Emma Stone's soon to be icon bright yellow dress, this is mesmerizing poster that does its job and then some.
This striking poster, the second on this list featuring Natalie Portman, is a stunner. The bright crimson reds, the delicate hands, the distant eyes looking off to unseen haunts, and that gorgeous handwritten "J" swooping off the collar, this is a glorious work of art that makes it nearly impossible to look away. So iconic was the fashion style and presence of the real Jackie Kennedy Onassis, you really wouldn't need the title on the image to know what the film is about. This is a somber one sheet but one with substantial power and the best poster of the year.