Lost in the Movies: The Posters of Steven Spielberg

The Posters of Steven Spielberg

Today I very much wanted to establish what I hope will be a pattern: every Wednesday, reviews of DVD new release(s) on Lost in the Movies. However, due to miscalculations and the desire to cover several movies in one post, that particular piece will have to wait until tomorrow. Please stay tuned for a review responding to Precious, Capitalism: A Love Story, and Where the Wild Things Are.

In the mean time, another entry in the ongoing series looking at directors' posters. (*added a forgotten poster for The Lost World in 2015) Here we have another filmmaker of iconic status, one of my personal favorites, and one whose posters can do as good a job as any of summarizing the various zeitgeists he worked under. (By the way, there's one version of an early Spielberg film not included, but please check it out.)

This post was originally published on The Sun's Not Yellow.


J.D. said...

I love the posters for DUEL and SUGARLAND EXPRESS as well as the simplicity of CLOSE ENCOUNTERS. Ah, but you sure can't go wrong with the iconic poster for RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK. Man, it still holds up as one of the all-time greats.

MovieMan0283 said...

I think Sugarland Express might actually be my favorite out of all of these! By the way, check out the link for an alternate take on Close Encounters, pretty funny...

J.D. said...

hah! that IS pretty funny. Who designed that alt. CLOSE ENCOUNTERS poster? Vaughn Bode? Ralph Bakshi? Wow...

The Mad Hatter said...

The guy is still one of my favorite directors, so looking at these images all in one place feels like perusing through the top shlef of my dvd collection.

EMPIRE and COLOR PURPLE are things of graphic beauty...but for me, it will always come back to the one that I actually have a copy of and have framed up -

Nothing beats the simplicity of SAVING PRIVATE RYAN. Pity when it came time to theatrically release it, Dreamworks decided they needed to spell things out for people, and superimposed Hanks/Burns/Sizemore/Damon into the clouds.

Stephen said...


Very interesting again.

"The most bizarre murder weapon ever used"

Running somebody over with an automobile is not particular bizarre! What is bizarre is the Close Encounters poster - false advertising and artistic licence there.

The Jaws one is my favourite. Sugarland Express a close second.

The Raiders poster is actually pretty bad (forget what you think of the film and all the nostalgia surrounding it and it's some boring bloke posing in a jacket).

For me these aren't as strong as the posters for Scorsese's or Kubrick's films.

Daniel Getahun said...

Some very cool and inspired posters here. I forgot how great Hook's was, and there is definitely something to be said about the ominous simplicity of Jurassic Park. Imagine if that were produced in 2010 - it would probably have looked like the Land of the Lost poster!

Just Another Film Buff said...

AI tops... Joel Osment is manufactured. I bet that was Kubrick's too...

MovieMan0283 said...


I've noticed the teaser posters, meant to pique interest rather than explain the movie, are almost always superior to the eventual release posters. Doing this lineup was interesting because out of the 3 I've done so far, this overlapped the most with my 90s poster piece on Dancing Image. My first Spielberg was Hook in '91 whereas I never saw a Kubrick in theaters, and no Scorseses till Bringing Out the Dead in '99 (after that other post ended).


If you think that CE3K poster is crazy, check out the other Polish poster out there. My personal favorite? Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie:


False advertising? Sure. But several kinds of brilliant.


Hook is probably the strongest one, IMO.


I wonder. Knowing his sense of control, I wouldn't be surprised if he had the poster planned out really far in advance.

Btw, I really like the War of the World ones too.

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