Stranger Things Poster Art By Kyle Lambert

Okay – who else is watching Stranger Things on Netflix?? I’m exactly halfway through watching all 8 episodes & I’m really enjoying it. No spoilers, please! πŸ™‚

There are very few TV shows I watch anymore other than Game Of Thrones & The Walking Dead (which is starting to piss me off). I’ve tried a few new shows here & there but always lose interest. I may be the only person who couldn’t finish Making A Murderer (why the hype?).

Well, I’ve finally found two shows that I like! It’s not surprising that both happen to be set in my favorite decade (the 1980s). I adore Freaks And Geeks, which I’m only just watching for the first time now (it’s on Amazon Prime in the UK, FYI). How did I never see this show before? Like Stranger Things, I’m also about halfway through watching all of the episodes. Why the hell did Freaks And Geeks last only one season, dammit? Now I see why fans were so mad about that.

I started watching Stranger Things when I heard it described as “Stephen King crossed with 1980’s Steven Spielberg sci-fi”. That couldn’t sound more ME! Plus Winona Ryder is in it. Yes! Edward Scissorhands & Heathers Winona Ryder!!! Add the early 80s setting & great soundtrack and I’m extremely happy. πŸ™‚ At the moment, I’d say I prefer Freaks And Geeks overall. I think it’ll depend on how Stranger Things ends. Supernatural horror can go very wrong at the end sometimes. But both are great & I highly recommend them if you love the era.

Anyway, I thought I’d share a link to some great Stranger Things poster art by artist Kyle Lambert. I love the deliberate Drew Struzan style. Struzan is a favorite movie poster artist of mine (I did a top ten of my favorite Struzan posters HERE). You can see Lambert’s Stranger Things poster art at this link: Huffpost.com.

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My Blog’s August 2015 Stats

Well, it’s the first Sunday of the month so I thought I’d review my blog’s stats for August. It was my biggest month for views in the almost three years since starting my blog, which is cool as it’s felt like everyone kind of disappeared over this summer. Where is everybody?! Hope you all had lovely summer vacations. πŸ™‚

Here are the stats I enjoy looking at the most – My Top Viewed Posts For August:

Well, My Top Ten Shower & Bath Scenes In Movies post is never going to die – I posted that in 2013 & it’s in my Top Posts every month. Pervs.

What I’m always happiest about is when I review something slightly more obscure & end up getting a huge response from people who either wish to add how much they love that movie or from people who had never heard of it & are now very interested in seeing it after my (stunningly well-written) review. πŸ˜‰

There were two posts like that in August. One was my review for The Last Unicorn, a strange little animated Rankin/Bass film from 1982 that was animated by those who later went on to form my beloved Studio Ghibli. It’s very of its time & has a totally 70’s-easy-listening soundtrack with songs by America plus big-name voice talents such as the always cool Christopher Lee as the “baddie”. It’s strange & beautiful and lots of bloggers, male & female, stopped by to say how much they love that movie.

The other post that got a lot of attention was My Top Ten Drew Struzan Movie Art Pieces. I love movie poster art & thought Struzan was more of a household name but after I reviewed the excellent documentary about him (review HERE), it was obvious many bloggers weren’t aware of him. When I did my Top Ten list of his movie art, people became far more interested when they saw just how many iconic posters he created (Back To The Future, various Star Wars special editions, The Thing, etc etc).

Finally, my biggest post of the month (after that old shower/bath post) was My Top Ten Movies With Song Title Titles. I had a lot of fun putting that list together so was very happy to get so many comments on it. I’m glad I finally got up off my bum & started posting these top ten lists every Thursday. I have a lot of them – I just need to get the time to put the posts together each week! I’ll try to keep it up. πŸ™‚

Now onto the always entertaining (and pervy) Top Search Terms For August:

“Alice Eve hot” AGAIN?! Every damn month that pops up! And I don’t think a day goes by where I don’t get at least one view of my old Odd Thomas review & I know it’s just because the actress in it, Addison Timlin, wears extremely revealing panties. Pervs. But… Kyle Reese naked?! I wish! Unfortunately, I have no nude photos of Michael Biehn. πŸ˜‰

Let’s see… Haviland Morris? The popular bitch from Sixteen Candles? Wonder who was searching for her… Not Jake Ryan! Ha! Interesting that people were looking for current photos of the cast from The Lost Boys & The NeverEnding Story (don’t click on that – you may ruin your childhood looking at Barret Oliver now). Looking at those posts, I’d forgotten I did this Lost Boys haiku. I like it!:

Two Coreys defeat
Santa Carla vampires
Death by stereo

 

Finally, here are My Top Commenters (hugs!) & New Followers (hello there!):

I can’t believe it’s already September. But I must admit that I can’t wait for this month to finish so that I can start posting nothing but horror movie reviews & other horror-movie-related items through all of October. And I love reading all the horror reviews on other blogs, which is weird as it’s hardly my favorite genre! I’ve been watching horror films since July to prepare. And, man – have they sucked! I’m hoping to watch a few good ones by October. So far, this is the only one I’ve enjoyed in the slightest:

Happy September everyone! πŸ™‚

My Top Ten Drew Struzan Movie Art Pieces

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Yesterday I reviewed Drew: The Man Behind The Poster, which is a documentary about legendary movie poster artist Drew Struzan. Struzan has created some of the most well-known & iconic film posters and I love his work. I decided to do a separate post highlighting some of my favorite Struzan pieces of movie art.

At first I was going to focus just on his art that officially got used (whether originally or for anniversary editions). But in looking at his official website (HERE), I discovered a lot of art I like that I’d never seen before. So I figured I’d include all movie-related work (so, I’m excluding things like his super cool Black Sabbath album cover). I already KNOW I’ll be missing something & I’ll later kick myself for it. He’s done so much that it’s hard to narrow it down and, while there’s a long list on his site, I have no idea if it’s complete plus not all the images are shown.

So, after spending probably an hour looking up Struzan’s art, I’ve decided that these are my favorite. Probably. For now. I’m so indecisive! πŸ˜‰ I’ll fully admit that I have a very hard time not letting how much I like the movie influence my opinion and, indeed, I like all of these movies. Remember I’m not an art expert in the slightest – I just really like the look of these. Especially number one. 

Now here are My Top Ten Drew Struzan Movie Art Pieces:

Honorable Mentions

Indiana Jones Quadrilogy, Squirm (I don’t know this movie but the poster makes it look awesome despite the 4.4 IMDB rating!), Star Wars Original Trilogy, Back To The Future 

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10. TIE: The Goonies & Adventures In Babysitting

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9. Big Trouble In Little China

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8. Ladyhawke

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7. The Dark Tower as seen in The Mist

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6. The Muppet Movie

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5. Revenge Of The Jedi

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4. E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial

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3. Back To The Future Trilogy

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2. Pan’s Labyrinth

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1. The Thing

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Drew: The Man Behind The Poster (2013) Review

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Drew: The Man Behind The Poster (2013)

Directed by Erik Sharkey

Starring: Drew Struzan, Dylan Struzan, Harrison Ford, Guillermo del Toro, George Lucas, Michael J. Fox, Thomas Jane

Running time: 97 minutes

Plot Synopsis: (via Wikipedia)
Drew: The Man Behind The Poster is a 2013 documentary film directed by Erik Sharkey about the career of American film poster artist Drew Struzan.

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My Opinion:

I watched this documentary last year and kept meaning to review it. I don’t know how to review documentaries (or books! man I’m behind on book reviews). As a documentary, I suppose it was pretty good. I don’t watch too many of them unless I’m really really interested in the subject, though, and this one was right up my alley. I love movies (obviously) & movie poster art and Drew Struzan has designed some of the greatest & most well known movie posters. So I’ll warn you right now that I may end up talking more about his art than about the actual documentary.

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Personal Life:

What I liked about this documentary, as with any documentary, was finding out more about Struzan’s personal life as well as his work. They talked to him and to his wife a lot and they seemed to have a lovely, very close relationship (I love a good husband & wife team). I’d say Struzan came across as a bit bitter and angry over certain things (he got very screwed over by someone in his career so I can understand that anger). He was the very definition of a “starving artist” in his early days and his wife was always by his side. I think this documentary got the balance right in talking about his personal life as well as his art. I can’t find any photos of his wife (Dylan) in the documentary, which is odd as she’s a very important part of it. But I found the above photo here, on the website of an artist who met Drew. It’s an interesting article if you want to have a look at the link & get an actual artist’s perspective on things (I can’t draw anything other than stick figures. I can’t even paint a wall properly!).

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It’s interesting how artistic types can sometimes be difficult but I liked how Struzan seems to have said “screw it” and lives for his wife & his art now. I’m difficult too but I have zero artistic talent of any sort so I don’t know what my excuse is… πŸ˜‰ I’m not saying he came across as unlikeable – just that he does what he wants to do now & too bad if others don’t like it. I think more people should be like that, actually. He was far less grumpy than Paul Williams was in the Paul Williams Still Alive documentary that I watched at the same time. I suppose I should do a mini-review of that sometime too… Here’s my review: Paul Williams is a grumpy fart! Lol. Seriously, though, Struzan came across as a private person who’s very passionate about the things he loves and I have a lot of respect for people who are like that.

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Artwork:

First of all, I’ll say they did a good job getting some famous people to talk about Struzan and the work that he did for/with them (I especially loved Michael J. Fox’s enthusiasm for Struzan’s work – you could tell just how much he loved being a part of the Back To The Future posters). Speaking of grumpy famous people, they even got Harrison Ford to talk about Struzan! How cool is that? He must be the actor Struzan has painted more than any other… We also heard from Guillermo del Toro, George Lucas, and Thomas Jane.

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I’m really glad they spoke to Thomas Jane about his part as a movie poster artist in Frank Darabont’s The Mist. For anyone not familiar with the movie, Struzan’s artwork was used in the beginning and Jane’s character is shown painting Struzan’s art for Stephen King’s The Dark Tower (which Struzan painted specifically to be used in The Mist). Three things I love all together: Stephen King, Drew Struzan & Frank Darabont! Wait… Four! Thomas Jane is a hottie. Anyway, Struzan showed Jane how to make it look like he was really an artist doing a painting then, being the perfectionist that he is, later told Jane that he did it completely wrong in the movie. I loved Jane’s re-telling of the story – he had a great sense of humor about it.

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Frank Darabont is clearly a big fan of Struzan’s as he’s had him do art for a lot of his work (The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, The Walking Dead, and of course artwork for & in The Mist). George Lucas is also a huge fan and Struzan has done loads of Star Wars art for books, anniversary editions, etc. There are so many different Struzan Star Wars pieces that it’s hard to choose a favorite. I think it’s between Revenge Of The Jedi & this one, which was a collaboration with artist Charles White III:

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Struzan did the poster art for Hellboy but he also did an amazing piece for Pan’s Labyrinth, which the studio rejected (much to Guillermo del Toro’s anger). But del Toro is very proud to have this hanging in his home – I’d love to have this!:

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I hate how studios so often feel the need to have horrible, boring movie posters just featuring photos of the film’s stars these days. I understand that seeing the stars so prominently displayed convinces some people to watch a movie (I guess?) but it doesn’t work on me. I’m more interested in a film if it has a really interesting, artistic poster (I’m the same way with books. I’m drawn to books with good covers). Struzan paints the film’s stars anyway so I don’t know why anyone would ever choose some crappy photoshopped photo over a painting for a movie poster. I’d much rather see something like this:

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Summary:

I’ve decided to stop here for a couple of reasons. First of all, I sometimes feel ridiculous “reviewing” movies when I know as little about filmmaking as I do about writing. When it comes to art, I have even less experience or knowledge. I just know what I LIKE and I have a passion for film, music, books, and art & love discussing it with all of you in the same way that someone like Struzan has a passion for actually creating that art. Believe me, I’d far rather be creating it but I just don’t have that ability.

Second of all, if I continue I know I’ll just ramble on & on about all my favorite Struzan pieces. So, in the middle of this, I decided to do a separate list of My Top Ten Drew Struzan Movie Art Pieces, which I’ll post tomorrow. I’ve actually not even mentioned a lot of my favorites, including the one that is my favorite Struzan poster, hands down. I’ll just mention this as I decided that my list tomorrow should focus on only his movie art: When watching this documentary, I had NO idea that Struzan had done album covers and that he did one of my all-time favorites for Black Sabbath. How on Earth had I not known that?! The Alice Cooper one is amazing as well:

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Love those! Like I said, I know what I like and I know that seeing Drew Struzan movie art makes me happy. As for this documentary, I really enjoyed it as I find the subject matter fascinating and it was great getting to know a little bit about this private and talented artist.

My Rating: 7.5/10

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My Top Ten Black Sabbath Songs

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Yep, I have no movie reviews ready to post today so it’s time for a super lazy Top Ten List! Look, Seth – SABBATH! πŸ™‚

Counting down to my number one favorite, here are My Top Ten Black Sabbath Songs:

10. TIE: Planet Caravan & A National Acrobat
9. N.I.B.
8. Electric Funeral
7. Iron Man
6. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
5. Paranoid
4. Fairies Wear Boots
3. War Pigs
2. Spiral Architect
1. Black Sabbath

Number one & two are SO close… Think it depends on my mood. Yeah – I mainly just know the “Greatest Hits”. This was an easy post – I should do these more often!

Actually, I just realized that I can make this a movie-related post as well. One of the many movies I watched in 2014 but didn’t get around to reviewing was Drew: The Man Behind The Poster. I’ll still review that as I found it fascinating and I LOVE Drew Struzan’s movie posters. However, as he’s so well known for his famous movie posters, I had NO idea before watching the documentary that he’d also done one of my favorite album covers (and back cover) for one of my favorite bands! Black Sabbath’s Sabbath Bloody Sabbath:

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How did I not know that?? Anyway – here’s the song Black Sabbath. I love that it sounds like what you’d hear on the way to Hell. It’s perfect for the walk to work. πŸ™‚