Monday 4 July 2011

The Dude Designs...

They say you should never judge a book by its cover, but I don't think the same idiom applies to movies. There's nothing I enjoy more than a good movie poster, and I often base my decision on whether to watch a film on how creative the poster design is. The granddaddy of the art form is Saul Bass, followed closely behind by the amazing Drew Struzan (whose work we've featured on the site before), but it's exciting when someone new arrives on the scene with a cool body of work to admire.

The newest designer to catch my eye is Tom Hodge, whose work can be seen over at The Dude Designs. His illustrated images use retro Grindhouse stylings to give recent releases a gritty 80's 'video nasty' vibe. Here's a selection of some of his poster work for recent films like the decidedly Grindhouse sounding Hobo With A Shotgun and The Legend Of The Psychotic Forest Ranger, as well a couple of posters designed for the Curzon Cinema's Midnight Movies special screenings. Click on the images to enlarge.

Not limiting himself to just film posters, I'm also quite fond of this fake video cover starring the Dude himself, Tom Hodge, as his vigilante crusader alter ego, Cannon. As they say, the devil is in the detail, and this cover has plenty of cool touches that any collector of VHS will recognise and appreciate, from the slap dash certification sticker on the spine to the old rental price sticker on the cover. Something akin to Boogie Nights meets Death Wish, the cast list for Cannon sounds suitably 80's too, featuring the unlikely monikers of Harlequin Fox, Steel Johnson and Rocco Wollf. I would totally watch this movie.

If you like what you've seen here, I fully recommend that you head over to The Dude Designs to check out the rest of his work. There's some choice words from Hodge explaining his graphic influences and approach to each commission, although you'll have to put up with him saying 'allot', a lot. Still, it's the graphic design that's the selling point and on that front, you can't fault him.

Thanks to Tom Hodge and the excellent poster archive IMP for the use of images.


  1. A great poster can definitely amp up the anticipation for a movie. It's just an indication that the makers care about what they're doing (see the X-Men First Class posters for the opposite of this effect...). Both Hobo and Innkeepers caught my eye with their ace posters, and I'm really looking forward to seeing both.

  2. Whoops! I spelt my blog's name wrong on my original comment. I tried to delete it to avoid embarrassment, but it appears the internet isn't written in pencil, it's written in ink. Anyway, here's my original comment!
    Absolutely. I suppose it's all part of the hype process, but my desire to check out Hobo, Innkeepers and now Forest Ranger has definitely been raised thanks to these excellent posters.