Thursday, January 01, 2009

Macabre Movie Poster Madness - American Horror: Japanese Style

I think my favorite country for movie posters just might be Japan. I like posters that are a bit out of the ordinary and Japan can tend to get really out there with their designs. I especially like what they were doing with American horror films in the 70s and 80s. A lot of the time the posters are like very chaotic collages - movie stills, art from other posters for the film, and Japanese characters splattered seemingly randomly around. It's fascinating really, I could look at them for hours.

The Evil Dead. This poster damn near out-kitsches Army of Darkness' Japanese poster. Not nearly as cool as the one for AOD (and really, what could be?), but this thing is still absolutely bananas.

Now a hysterical poster from John Carpenter's Halloween. At first glance, this poster is fairly kick ass. It's simplistic, but very moody and sinister at the same time. But wait! Take a look a Mikey's face. Whoops! I like to imagine this guy was just really blitzed while he was painting this at the last minute, desperate to make a deadline and he just accidentally went a little too "bulgey-eyed puppet man" with his depiction of Michael Myers.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre - The collage-like design really works quite well here. Like a page from some demented scrapbook that might've been kept on the premises of the Sawyer compound. What all the Japanese stuff would be doing on there, I do not know, but you see what I'm saying.

Re-Animator - A masterful classic, brimming with severed head eroticism. Gotta love the blood splatter to hide Barbara's business. I don't know if that's supposed to be funny, but....

Carrie - I've got no comment on this one, but I figured the post would look odd without something other than the title here.


colinr said...

Brilliant posters! I love seeing the take of different cultures on familiar films and the Japanese ones often provide a surprising new perspective on them! Have you checked out Polish film posters? They're even crazier and often have little to do with the film they are advertising.

By the way I hope you had a good Christmas and have a happy New Year! Thanks for the previous year of the Manchester Morgue!

musio*52 said...

These are very cool posters! Can you post some Thai posters? I have seen a few that are even wilder than the Japanese ones. Thanks for these and for the rare horror soundtracks I could never find before. May 2009 be a great year for you and us readers!!

phelpster said...

colinr - Yeah Polish posters are pretty nuts too. I actually made a custom Rosemary's Baby cover using a Polish poster.

musio - I actually have an insane Evil Dead Thai poster I'll probably put up next time I do posters.

lachupacabra said...

those are AWESOME!
im a sucker for foreign posters.
i WISH i could find a copy of the polish omen one i saw online many yrs ago.
i was partial to mostly just paki, thai & polish ones but id never really seen such amazing japanese ones b4!
they are incredible!
thank you for sharing them!

Henryjarlow said...

Hi, I'm a french movie fan writing for a zine, I want to use the japanese poster of Reanimator but the quality on your post is not very good, can you tell me where you found it / if you have it in a better quality ? my email is

phelpster said...

Henry - Hi, you can find a high quality scan here:

sa said...



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