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Movie Poster of the Week: “Weekend”

The third in a series of Godard re-release posters from Steve Chow.
No, not that one. Although Andrew Haigh’s well-received British indie Weekend is opening today, it was this new poster for Janus’s re-release of Godard's 1967 Week End that caught my eye this week. Last week I described the poster for Burning Man as a poster that makes you twist your neck; this one turns you sideways. Taking a film which I always misremember as being widescreen—probably because of that endless Chinese scroll of a tracking shot past cinema’s most famous traffic jam—designer Steve Chow has turned a pile-up of two cars and a small plane into a vertical totem pole simply by turning the image on its side. It works because of the upended red car which is now horizontal (one of the few things in the poster which seems to be the right way around) along with the simple line of title type along its underbelly. It also works, above all, because of its riot of color.
As you can see below the poster would work just as well as a British quad, but Chow, who in recent years has also designed Janus posters for two other Godard re-releases Vivre sa vie and Pierrot le fou, seems energized by the vertical plane (no pun intended).
Both of his other Godard posters place Anna Karina against a plain white wall with all the rest of the visual interest in the poster on the right hand side of the canvas: Jean-Paul Belmono up a telegraph pole, or the doorway and neon sign of a seedy hotel.
Together they make a lovely triptych, each with their simple sans serif type in red, white, black and blue.
I’d be remiss, however, if I didn’t also give a shout out to the poster for the other Weekend, which is simple and understated and quite lovely.
No serifs allowed on the weekend.
Steve is one of Criterion’s best designers right now. He’s a cool guy too. He actually works for our local Cinematheque here in Vancouver and does our bi-monthly program guides. Take a look:
when will Criterion release the weekend art poster print?
Filmy, it’s out now And good gravy, I’m excited. This is going to look ridiculous on the wall between the other Chow posters (not to mention the inevitable DVD, which I’ve been waiting on since renting the ragged-ass videotape from a university library nine years ago).

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