The internet has been taking it on the chin for a couple years now (deservedly so). But back in oh-so-innocent days of the early 20-teens, we weren’t thinking about the political manipulation and attention deficit and tribalism. We just loved to wile away the hours online for little feeling of escape. (There’s a meme for that.) The advent of sites like YouTube and Pinterest and Imgur created vast archives of pop cultural ephemera where we could benignly indulge our yearnings for nostalgia for hours on end.
One such internet k-hole I ventured down a several years ago was the Imgur account of @joinyouinthesun, and in particular, two of their collections: Textless Movie Posters and More Textless Movie Posters. Pulling from the vast repository of images hosted on blu-ray.com message boards (k-hole warning once again), joinyouinthesun chose 140 of their favorite posters with all titles, credits, taglines, and names removed.
I love the disembodied feeling of scrolling through the images — many of them seared into our collective memories — but without any typography to tether the photos and illustrations to a specific time and place. The feeling of dread in “The Exorcist” is renewed in that foggy, black and white tableau with Max Von Sydow tentatively paused at the front gate. The expression and detail of the “Edward Scissorhands” poster gains new poignancy when left uncluttered. And we see how those images are part of the movies’ cultural cachet — our vivid memories of each film is tightly intertwined with the imagery on the poster that lured us into the theater to begin with.