Monday, 28 February 2011

True Grit

True Grit. Directed by Joel and Ethan Coen.

A tough U.S. Marshal helps a stubborn young woman track down her father's murderer.

Design: BLT Associates
Yep, them again!

WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE! This is what this poster is all about. It roots its self firmly in the venacular of the Wild West and in all the film incarnations that we have seen before that live in the popular imagination. I see tumble weed, smell spur whiskey, hear creaky saloon doors swinging and in the distance see dusty riders approaching when I look at this poster and all through the simple power of a font. The font used here is Rockwell, created around 1910 so it wasn't even around when the West was wild, so why use it. The western has been a long running story, and with that a lot of cliches and misnomers and the designers by simply avoiding all the wood type and associated 'cowboy' fonts have side stepped a whole 'Rawhide' take on cowboy movies and created something that hints at a 'fresh' look at the subject.

The original poster for the John Wayne version of the film again not an Egyptian slab in sight

The text is beautifully crafted, clear and shows that good typography is enough to grab the attention of the audience. The structure that is created by the text is carried through beautifully on the character posters, none of the feel of the original is lost.

This is an excellent series and one that strikes a good midpoint between what a modern big studio production demands while retaining the character of the film and and giving it some integrity to boot all through well thought out and sympathetic design.

While researching this poster I also came across the work of Aaron Horkey who created his this version of the true Grit poster as a limited edition for Mondo. All the lettering and illustration are hand drawn, with no computer aid and then screen printed.

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