Designing the poster for a film is a very fine art. One shouldn’t judge a film by its advertising but more often than not, audiences will. The best posters are not only the most eye-catching and technically stunning but expose the core of the picture, pinpointing the essence of a moment or character that acts as a portal into the film’s world.
There’s a similar sense of abandon mixed with a dreamlike sense of storytelling within it that couldn’t be further from the more rigid structures in much of the advertising from mid to late 20th century America. The imagery often exuded a personal, specific vision that played on a more lyrical level rather than literal, undercutting some of the more odious aspects of communist rule. Posters from the Eastern Bloc bordered on traditional art, imbued with an unmistakable energy, while their American counterparts (not without its charms) often housed itself in tried and tested methods of mass communication.
A poster is a film’s ambassador and has a responsibility to the audience it’s attempting to draw in: speaking honestly to a story and it’s themes shows a respect for the filmgoer to make a relatively informed decision for themselves about what they want to see. Tossing all that out in favor of something engaging yet tonally inappropriate places the viewer at a disadvantage, and you’re left with work that borders on art for art’s sake in arena aimed at having a conversation with those you most want to tell your story to.