Tuesday, June 2, 2015

The Art of the Horror Movie

I remember my first Godzilla movie. You know they were kind of grainy black and white films with "B" actors and laughable dialogue. But to an 8-10 year old, they were scary. Most actors disappeared but Jim Arness and others went on to long run TV shows or movie stars (Steve McQueen from The Blob").
I watched the latest version last night, barely a year old already on HBO! It was easy to see why too.

While the plot was marginal and oddly Godzilla killed the praying mantis like creature terrorizing everyone, you have to wonder about the time, effort and, yes, artistry that went into the special effects. I have no idea if the movie made money but Godzilla has fans across the generations starting with the Boomers and gets new ones all the time.

It has all the elements of excitement. Cities with death and destruction, the same basic plot of discovery of the monster (s) yet again, waking it up with dire results with attempts time after time to destroy him and a nebulous resolution of events. I must admit I was surprised when Godzilla, mostly absent during this version, suddenly shows up and goes after what I assume was a competitor not caring for the puny humans helpless to stop the rampage.

If you are a fan of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW, you have seen what movie posters from the past are worth! The originals especially can be worth thousands and depending on the movie, rare posters are too. If anything today's posters are more detailed, like the movies they represent, and they are works of art.

Look at Godilla above. You may not like the subject but there is no denying the layout, execution and skill of the artist is amazing. Many artists may feel like hacks yet you can't deny their skill. They have captured the essence of the movie in a single image. Planes, boats and the monster are locked in a deadly battle and this image leaves no doubt who will win. If anything Godzilla movies are about the only sci-fi flicks that end this way. Most sci-fi movies have massive destruction and resolution at the end. The good guys win.  With Godzilla you are never sure. You do know that, so far, he will return. Maybe that's the attraction.

I'm sorry. An iPad will not import a photo in its own album or photo collection. They have some work to do here. To see some amazing posters go to GOOGLE, click images and type in "Godzilla." They are simply amazing. This is one of the reasons an iPad will never replace a computer.

I urge you, the next time you go to the movies or pick up a DVD, to look at the posters or covers and see the artistry. The artist in every way meets the tenets of good art techniques even having to account for type in ways most"artists" never will. There are lessons here for all of us.

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