(April 16, 2017) Original
(October 15, 2017) New Trailer (#2) / New Posters (#3-#10)
(December 10, 2017) New Posters (#11-#40)
December 15, 2017
From IMDb: “Having taken her first steps into a larger world in Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens (2015), Rey continues her epic journey with Finn, Poe and Luke Skywalker in the next chapter of the saga.”
Poster Rating: B / D / B- (6) / B / D / B / B (2) / C+ / C+ / C (17) / C+ (6) / C (2)
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Review: (#1) An interesting choice to go two-tone monochromatic, employing red as a background style while using blue as a visual punch. It’s a solid design for a film that didn’t need a solid poster to sell. (#2) Placeholders are ultimately pointless, but fans will be excited.
(#3-#8) These character posters trade on a red-and-white theme the film seems to be trying to work hard. This is exemplified in the subsequent poster design. (#9) Drenched in red, either to symbolize blood or some other concept that the film will introduce when it releases. This is starkly different from all of the other primary posters designed for this franchise, which is both exciting and distracting. (#10) This is supposedly the exclusive poster given to attendees of the IMAX screening. Sadly, it feels crudely drawn and generally uninteresting.
(#11) This is a similar (to #9), but still fascinating design. Lots of little details and the red motif works far better here than it does in myriad other designs. (#12-#13) This pair of posters has more interesting visual details that evoke a sense of light and dark, which is just the concept you want for this film. (#14) Not as interesting as prior designs, but still modestly striking. (#15) This design might take the red-and-orange color scheme a bit too far as it’s a bit garish and unwieldy. (#16-#32) This series of character posters is a bit unique, looking merely at objects (mostly), not just people. They aren’t terribly exciting, but they are interesting. (#33-#38) These character posters are similar to the first set released, though they give a bit more head space and shift from a white-and-red motif to something far more crimson. Fascinating visuals, though they get a bit drab after a time. (#39-#40) Two force wielders in their various environs make for a stark contrast even if the settings for each aren’t particularly compelling.
Trailer Rating: B / B+
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Review: (#1) There’s a lot of overarching detail, a lot of simplistic reminiscence, and a lot of suggested action. Fans of the franchise won’t need much to buy tickets, but a better trailer is certainly needed.
(#2) The film continues to ratchet up the inventiveness. There’s a strange darkness settling in over this trailer and it suggests a film that will go into deeper recesses than even The Empire Strikes Back did, perhaps even having Rey sidle up to the Dark Side in order to understand her opponent better. That would be an entirely different approach and an interesting one.
The Force Awakens earned five Oscar nominations, the best showing the series has seen since the original. It’s possible this film shows up in the same five categories (Best Original Score, Film Editing, Sound Mixing, Sound Editing, and Visual Effects), but I suspect that it will lose out on Film Editing and may not get a chance at Original Score again.