• This week, Time is all too happy to judge a movie by its cover. Gilbert Cruz, an editor at the magazine, has compiled a list called “Top 10 Cool Criterion Collection Covers.” Cruz’s taste in design tends toward illustration over photography, though the films he’s chosen make for an eclectic bunch themselves. At number one is Sam Smith’s fanged feline for Nobuhiko Obayashi’s horror show House (above; “There’s just something about this that says, ‘Watch me or I will eat you.’”). The rest of the lineup includes the brand-new artwork by Dave Plunkert of Spur Design for Diabolique (below); the graphic artist Seth’s representation of Make Way for Tomorrow (“Just looking at this art—everything about the posture of those two indicates that they know they’ll never see each other again—makes one want to start sobbing”); Olly Moss’s eye-catchingly minimal cover for The Great Dictator; Neil Kellerhouse’s “simple, stark” update of the Seventh Seal cover; Daniel Clowes’s cartoon mindscape for Shock Corridor; Lucien S. Y. Yang’s Wyeth-esque realism for Days of Heaven; the “clean and cool and stylish” look Steve Chow delivered for Pierrot le fou; Eric Chase Anderson’s delicate Royal Tenenbaums drawings; and Modern Times, also by Sam Smith and featuring Charlie Chaplin as the ultimate gearhead. What are your favorites?

11 comments

  • By Brendan
    February 22, 2011
    08:34 PM

    THE HOUSE ONE IS JUST SO COOL!!!!!! I DON'T KNOW IF ANY OF THE OTHER POSTERS CAN MATCH IT!...Maybe Pierrot le fou.
    Reply
  • By DeepFocusReview
    February 22, 2011
    08:47 PM

    My personal favorite is "Throne of Blood". That needs to be a poster in your Store. Just gorgeous. Although I'd love to have a 27x40 poster of that lovely new "Diabolique" image too. How about it, Criterion?
    Reply
  • By KPM
    February 23, 2011
    09:56 AM

    I would love to see more posters become available.
    Reply
  • By MA
    February 23, 2011
    02:03 PM

    Unbelievable. Great design is one of Criterion's marks. But the Fullers and Diabolique are terrible. It's not enough to take an image from the film, the great ones do it with a style also inspired by the film - like Sweet Smell of S. Modern Times is perfect. Notorious is sublime. Many many throughout the catalogue. Vampyr, Z, Naked Lunch.
    Reply
  • By David Hollingsworth
    February 23, 2011
    04:07 PM

    If I had to choose at least one favorite cover, it would have to be the cover for "Walkabout". It's stark, beautiful, and hypnotic, just like the film itself. It just rings true for me.
    Reply
  • By Roy Harris
    February 23, 2011
    07:50 PM

    Besides all the work that Criterion puts in the movies and supplements, I look at the covers as works of art. I think the best cover is Crumb. I also really like House, Equinox, Mystery Train, Dazed and Confused, Chungking Express, Modern Times and Flesh for Frankenstein.
    Reply
  • By greg
    February 24, 2011
    10:29 AM

    A few favorites are 'Ran', 'Army of Shadows' and 'W.R. Mysteries of the Organism'. It would be great if most of your covers were available as posters.
    Reply
  • By Paul
    February 25, 2011
    12:20 PM

    House is certainly one of the best. Don't forget the updated Seven Samurai cover. Minimalistic and perfectly symbolic. Gotta give credit to the striking image of the updated Third Man cover as well. I've always dug the pulp and comic style of the covers of The Blob, Equinox, and the Monsters and Madmen set. Fear and Loathing's Steadman style cover is a great tribute to the original work. The in-your-face advertising style of Schizopolis' cover is another great reflection of the film itself. Onibaba's imitation of the traditional Japanese style with the mask that jerks your attention is pretty cool. That tattoo on the Jigoku cover is pretty bad ass. And who can leave out the beautiful and fittingly creepy cover of White Dog? Ran and Dazed and Confused's stylistic texts are pretty awesome, too.
    Reply
  • By carter
    February 25, 2011
    01:35 PM

    - House (is that cover the original or Criterion?) - Videodrome (The Full Packaging is fantastic) - Jean Painleve shorts (the Full Package again, awesome) - Wise Blood (great throw back to a penguin cover, reminding us of the far superior novel it was based on) - Umberto D - Clean and Simple. - Fanny & Alexander - so warm and inviting. - Last Year at Marienbad - it's barely there! So many more. Thanks for setting the bar high, Big C.
    Reply
  • By DeanK
    February 27, 2011
    05:26 PM

    There are so many but here are a few: CRONOS – Stunning Mike Mignola art. DAYS OF HEAVEN – Feels like the film. DIABOLIQUE – Evocative of the film and it's period. So pulpy and pretty. Makes me want it. HOUSE has the most eye-catching cover. Memorable, creepy, funny & oddly charming--just like the film. HUNGER – So simple, but intense and moving. MODERN TIMES – Chaplin as gear head. Well done! Also: CHUNGKING EXPRESS JEANNE DIELMAN ROBINSON CRUSOE ON MARS VAMPYR VIVRE SA VIE
    Reply
  • By Patrick
    February 28, 2011
    02:46 PM

    The new Diabolique cover is sublime. Also, I love the Marienbad cover. It's simple but perfect for the film.
    Reply

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