British Film Posters: An Illustrated History

 Author: Sim Branaghan

This is the type of book you expect to find in Art Galleries that give you indepth text and pictures on a grand exhibition you just walked through. If only there was an exhibition showing these posters off!

The book opens with the author’s own personal experience with collecting posters back in the 70’s. There is clearly a well thought out love for the subject, and clearly personal experience that has built up as a major hobby over the decades.

It has been pointed out that there are few books on movie posters out there, it is however a growing trend and the past 5  years have seen more titles appearing. This book sets a good example of how to go about your research and how to present it in book form.

There is a fine blend of writing as well as visuals. Some books can be visual-lite (Which makes no sense when you are talking about a visual medium), but then others are all tart and no subtext. Sim Branaghan provides a wealth of text around the images and has divided the book into two parts (1896-1945 and 1946-1986), which are in turn chopped into relevant chapters to follow.

But even if you are as sick as I am of seeing that damn original Star Wars poster – there are multitudes of old classics, and cult films here (Doug McClure fans out there?). And when was the last time you saw a Poster with Simon MacCorkindale’s name on it (There’s at least two here!). If you like movie posters this is a 5 star essential buy!

Steven Hurst

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