Judging Countries By Their Covers: East vs. West Movie Posters

A couple weeks back, we took a side-by-side look at the US and UK book jackets for several of our favorite books to see if you could, indeed, judge a country by its covers. Then we got to thinking about the posters that different countries attach to American films that make their way to their shores; there’s plenty of classic Hollywood advertising iconography out there, but more often than not, studio marketing departments play it very safe when they’re advertising their movies (simple designs, big pictures of actors’ faces, etc.). Independent artists and designers are having quite a bit of fun nowadays taking an artier pass at classic movies’ posters, but what about foreign distributors? We recently stumbled upon Cruzine’s brief history of the film posters of Poland and Czechoslovakia, complete with wonderful examples. Join us after the jump to check out how the East saw the films of the West, and which designs we prefer.

The African Queen (1951)

Here’s a perfect first comparison: The Hollywood version is all about the two big stars, their names dominating the poster, the image something off of a Harlequin romance cover. It is, let’s be honest, an absolute snoozer. The Polish poster, by contrast, is wonderfully, gloriously weird. Winner: East.