Counting Down to 2012 – Top Five Favorite Posters of 2011

Three more days until 2011 wraps, folks… so between now and the end of the year, I’ll do various top five/ten list that’ll end with a year in review.

Today, I’ll share my favorite official posters of movies released this year. I’m not including posters for movies released next year and beyond, but if I did, ScarletSp1der’s #1 favorite would make my list. So anyhoo, here are five posters I wouldn’t mind hanging in my entertainment room:

5. My Week With Marilyn

I haven’t seen the film yet and I’m not even a big fan of Marilyn Monroe, but something about this poster just works. It makes me curious to learn a bit more about what’s going on in that scene depicted in the poster, so in a way the design is quite successful. A lot of movie posters seems motionless with just people’s heads photoshopped together, this one gives a glimpse of the action happening in the subject matter’s life and I find that intriguing.

4. Page One Documentary

Another one I haven’t seen but it’s just so well-designed! I normally despise posters with promo quotes on them but in this one it seems like a cohesive piece that complements the main image.

3. The Artist

Ah the artistry of this whole project… If you’ve read my review, you know I’m enamored by the film, and this poster is just as gorgeous as film. I love the simplicity, it’s dramatic and elegant. That tiny dab of red stands out nicely against the black and white design.

2. Tree of Life

The main draw of seeing Tree of Life— or pretty much any Terrence Malick’s films—is the glorious visuals. So why not tantalize people with them… Can’t choose? Well just show as many as one could in one poster!! Fortunately, whoever designed this did it beautifully and an otherwise super busy layout actually looks beautiful to behold. I enjoy seeing every tiny picture, though if you look too closely you might get a spoiler or two 🙂

1. Midnight in Paris

I never would’ve put Van Gogh’s Starry Night and Owen Wilson walking along the Seine together… that’s my initial reaction when I saw this poster. But y’know, once I saw the film this design just grew on me. The amount of celebs in Woody Allen movie certainly is star-studded indeed, and the Parisian scenes definitely did not disappoint (my friend Castor even created a travel guide post inspired by the movie!). What I love most about this poster is the colors… I’m a huge fan of blues + yellow mixed together. It’s just downright gorgeous and makes you want to book your next vacation to the city of lights pronto!

By the way, I also saw this minimalist version someone posted on Flickr. I think it’s pretty cool though not as dramatic as this Van Gogh-inspired one.


I was gonna include the Tinker Tailor poster on my top 5 list but realized that it’s technically not an official poster. It’s part of a series designed by Paul Smith for charity, you can see the rest on this post. I think they deserve a mention though as they’re so excellently crafted.

As for Ghost Protocol, I think it’s brilliant that the designer choose to highlight the major highlight of the film, that is Tom Cruise scaling that Burj Khalifa tower! It’s an awesome scene indeed, so the promise of this poster definitely delivered!

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol

So what are some of your favorite posters of 2011? 

33 thoughts on “Counting Down to 2012 – Top Five Favorite Posters of 2011

  1. Great picks, Ruth. I especially appreciate the elegance of ‘The Artist’ one-sheet. Me?
    1. The Mechanic – great graphic, bad remake.

    2. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo – black & white used marvelously to edgy effect in the teaser (top), but the latter version is still a very nice abstraction

    3. Drive – This version captures what I love best in this neo-noir film (one of my favorites of the year).


  2. Not surprised about your top 2 choices. Those are gorgeous posters indeed! I do like the Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy poster with Gary Oldman as well as We Bought a Zoo (although it looks a lot like the one for The Big Year) and the ones for Drive.

    1. The poster for We Bought A Zoo is cute and whimsical, though I heard the movie is overly sentimental. I think the official Tinker Tailor is a bit too intellectual looking, like the movie too I guess.

  3. PrairieGirl

    Please forgive me for fast-forwarding to 2012. I’m not usually that partial to posters, but the one for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter has me hooked. I know, I know, I’m very biased because Rufus Sewell has a substantial role in it, but the juxtaposition of a cushy chair in a moonlit forest with Abe’s face obscured by the slightly tipped stove-top hat is very intriguing. And what’s left to say about the ax? An enticement for the film indeed ;-D

    1. Ahah, you’re getting ahead of yourself there Becky 🙂 But yeah I do like that poster a lot, that’ll be in my fave posters of 2012 list for sure. Can’t wait to see a trailer for that movie!

      1. PrairieGirl

        Hey, great to hear you like ALVH too. And waiting for the trailer, amen! I do love all your winning posters for 2011, which I neglected to mention before. Great picks they are.

        1. I’ll be blogging about Gerry and Rufus’ upcoming projects in Jan, I promise! Both of those boys have been sort of thrown by the way side because of Gregory 😉

  4. First off, thank you very much for the added linkage to my page. I love movie posters!

    Secondly! Glad to see that we agree on 3 of your 5!! I almost almost almost had that poster from My Week With Marilyn included on my list! Classy touch, Ruth!

    A great list. A nice way to simplify it by narrowing it to 2011 releases. Nice work!

    1. You’re welcome, T. Well I think it makes it easier for me to narrow down the list if I keep it just for this year. Some of your picks might my 2012 list 🙂

  5. Lovely poster selections, Ruth!
    Going to see Marilyn on NYE 🙂
    TTSP is also a real cool one.
    And The Artist and Midnight, well …

    Let it be said – all hail the power of the movie poster!

    1. Oh cool Iba, would love to hear what you think on Marilyn as I might end up renting that one. Yeah, wouldn’t it be nice to get a job to design movie posters for a living!

  6. In looking at the ‘Paris’ poster just now, I noticed that the Van Gogh painting style blends into the buildings and the walkway and the river in the far background. That’s a nice touch. I thought the ‘Starry Night’ effect was only in the sky behind the cityscape.

  7. I thought I had you figured out with the clean, white/gray/grayscale Mac look on the first handful… and then you threw me off with the colorful Starry Night (or as a former oblivious co-worker of mine called it, ‘Scary Night’) on Midnight in Paris.

    1. Ahah well sorry to disappoint you John. You’re right I do usually prefer the cleaner/simpler design but the starry night one just appeals to me. But art is so subjective isn’t it, what one finds artistic could be considered horrid by others 🙂

      1. Ha… no disappointment at all. Those are all awesome designs. You’ve got a really great eye for this kind of thing, and as you say- it’s subjective.

  8. Ted S.

    Those great choices.

    I don’t think I really paid that much attention to movie posters this year but I guess my favorite one is probably Rise of the Apes, the face photo of Caesar behind the title of the film is pretty cool I thought.

    1. Oh yeah it’s VERY creepy, which is perfect for the tone of the film. That’s probably the biggest surprise of the year for me as I don’t normally like movies like this nor was I a fan of James Franco.

  9. Matt Stewart

    Completely agree with all of these choices, actually! I would add Hugo and Drive though 😀

    I think I am getting biased towards everything Hugo… 😉

  10. I have never really been a fan of posters. I appreciate the work that goes into some. But I never get excited about them….

    Bah Humbug. HAHA

    Great list though, I can understand why you would want them on your wall Ruth!

  11. “I never would’ve put Van Gogh’s Starry Night and Owen Wilson walking along the Seine together.” Ha! Nice line. It’s too true. And yet, as evidence by your placement at #1, with which I totally agree, it improbably worked out. Such a lovely poster.

    1. Glad you agree Nick. Well I initially had doubts about Owen being a lead in this film as well but it’s quickly erased when the film started 🙂

  12. Hey! I did my picks a few days ago too. Totally missed Tinker, The Artist and Midnight in Paris. Those are quite good picks. Ides of March is one of my top 3 that wasn’t in here. Like the write ups too!

    1. Hi Luke, been a while since I hear from you. I haven’t seen Ides of March yet, more of a rental for me. I hope you see The Artist & Midnight in Paris soon, those are great to see on the big screen.

  13. Some very nice choices. Still have not seen The Artist and having made my end year list I really feel like it might have made the list if I had the chance to have watched it.

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