Last week saw the release of the trailer (watch here) and poster for Prisoners of the Ghostland — the first English-language feature by idiosyncratic director Sion Sono (best known for Love Exposure) and the latest weird movie starring Nic Cage (best known for, well, being Nic Cage).
The film, set in Samurai Town, sees a bank robber on a mission to save the adopted granddaughter of a local warlord from a cult of ghostly revenants. Appropriately for a madcap genre mishmash, the poster has a little (or a lot!) of everything: dragons, dead bodies, mannequins, neon bar signs, a giant head with glowing red eyes of doom, and a leather-clad Nic Cage wielding a katana with his back to the audience (which we all know means badassery in movie poster code).
Confronted with this cornucopia of crazy coolness, many people unexpectedly zeroed in on the poster’s text instead — some praising the choice of the pull quote, which doubles down on the key art’s promise of a wild ride:
and others pointing out an unfortunate misspelling (which has since been rectified):
Typos aside, the poster is undoubtedly a stunner, and its mental/metal vibe has been a big hit on the Internet. The people behind it are no strangers to marketing action-heavy titles: the LA-based agency Stockholm Design had previously done key art for franchises like The Hunger Games, John Wick and The Expendables.
The studio has actually created two posters for Prisoners of the Ghostland, but the second one capitalizes on Nic Cage’s star power rather than the film’s weirdness factor and is not quite as striking. There’s really no contest between a sullen Cage in a collar and a neon-soaked Mad Max by way of a samurai western!
The general public agrees, and many movie fans have already voiced the desire to buy the pink-and-blue key art once it’s available for sale — definitely the highest praise that a movie poster can get.
Can I buy this? Let me buy this. I will give all the monies— Khris Kholumbus (@KhrisGraves12) August 17, 2021
Absolutely LOVE this poster... I certainly hope these will be for sale in the future because I'd be all over that!— Scarlett 🦕 (@Volta1228) August 16, 2021
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