Analysis of Film Poster for “The Matrix”
From a distance the first thing that would be noticed by a passing audience would be the title of the poster. It would catch the viewer’s eye with its striking green colouration and large bold font. Its central position in the poster would draw the audience’s attention and bring them closer so they can pick out the smaller information, which in turn would lead to the desire to see the film or not.
The use of the upper case makes the title stand out from the rest of the poster and would act as the focal point of the advertisement. The type of font used in this case sharp and modern, would denote the genre of the movie, which again would influence the people and pick out a specific target audience.
The directors name on my poster is situated above the title, so presumably would be the next thing the viewer would focus upon.
A famous, well-established director such as Spielberg would sell a film by reputation alone. Their previous films using various genre would appeal to a target audience that wouldn’t have normally seen the film. Their success widens the target audience and draws in people outside the specified genre, making more money for the producer’s etc.
Images are probably the most important element of most types of advertisement. The use of images gives a more interesting and less boring way of getting the same message across that text would. Also because people are more susceptible to images and remember them easier, designers use this to inform and sell films by incorporating pictures into the poster. The type of imagery used again highlights a target audience, using their likes and dislikes, to create a demand for the film and make them want to watch it.
The fact that my only form of imagery is in text and the use of numbers was done purposely, as I chose to integrate the main theme of the film, which is computers and science fiction, by using what could be described as ‘computer language’. The mystery invoked by this type of imagery would entice viewers into watching the film to understand the relevance of it because they are only given small pieces of information. Also the fact that the images can only really be read from close proximity, would mean that people would have to move closer to see, meaning they have to study the poster harder, which would lead to more information being processed, meaning they will have a better understanding of the movie.
The actors and actresses are important in widening the target audience further, their past roles and performances in movies will influence people into viewing the film.
Most designers would use the upper case letters to advertise the cast as it stands out and would be more noticeable, they would use a contrasting colour from the back ground and they would position the most famous star on the left of the poster as viewers read from left to right.
In my poster Keanu Reeves is the first name to appear on the poster, as he is the most famous. It is important to select cast that will appeal to as wide a target audience as possible, with Reeves and Moss, it does just that. They are both younger actors that would appeal to both sexes with their looks and sexual allure. People relate to stars, they either want to be with them or want to be them. Laurence Fishbourne, however, would attract the older viewers, as he is an older more classical actor, people wouldn’t necessarily want to be him or be with him, they would more likely admire him for his acting ability.
The critic’s quote is a significant part in the layout of a film poster as it gives the reader a supposedly unbiast opinion of the film. The critic’s quote is filled with hyperbolic language and positive words that would make the movie out to be the best film ever. This would help sell the film as no one would want to see a movie that was given a bad review because people are influenced by success. In my quote I used upper case letters within the sentence because it adds to the hyperbole and it highlights the positive words in the quote.
The fact that it is directly under the cast’s names was done so that they would read the quote after the cast and work their way down the poster, building an opinion about the film and its view-ability. Who actually gave the quote is important too, as their success as a movie magazine, newspaper etc, would promote the movie and would again target a specific audience, in my case using Empire magazine, a ‘movie buff’ type of person. Because the average consumer doesn’t really know much about movies, the fact that they are being told by an ‘expert’, will influence their decision to pay their money to see the film.
By putting an age limit on the film you pick out a certain target audience. With having such a certificate as 15 advertised on the poster, you appeal to a younger audience with a ‘disposable income’, mainly students and adults that don’t have families or money that is spoken for. A certificate is there to give the viewers a rough guess as to its violence content, the language used and to what sort of extent the film has sexually explicit scenes in it. Although by putting an age limit on the movie, it doesn’t stop younger or older audience attending.
This element of the film poster can be both beneficial and detrimental to its success as a film poster. By using a producer’s quote you attract a target audience by association, people who have seen earlier films will make the connection with its success or with its failure. This is potentially where this piece of information can be harmful. If the viewers make the link with a prior films achievements, this can help with the advertised films selling capability. However, if people make a negative link with the previous film they are less likely to watch it, as they will be put off by the last films performance.
Altogether I feel my poster works reasonably well, I think it uses most of the key elements that a film poster has to possess in order to inform and to sell the movie to the public. The colouration is eye catching and modern and I feel I incorporated the main theme and essential taster of the movie within it.
However if I was to repeat the exercise again I would change, improve and add a few things. I would have more than one critic’s quote to broaden the target audience even further, this would be achieved by maybe having a well known newspaper write a review on it, making the film review be seen by a whole range of people, as more buy newspapers than movie magazines. I would also choose to have an actual image included in the poster, as the text that is the imagery in my poster may not be as memorable as pictures may be. To show the public of this movie’s success I would probably decide to have the awards, Oscars etc that the movie had won or been nominated for, as this would attract an audience that wouldn’t have normally bothered.