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Academy Awards - Part 3!

And we're back to the Awards! It's this weekend, February 24th, and Hollywood is already buzzing about who will win. We're going to take a step back from the glitz and the glam today by looking at some poster designs from a more unexpected source: the Documentary Features.

I actually love a good documentary myself, especially on more controversial modern topics. But beside that, there is also an art form found in documentaries that fictional films try to achieve everyday, and that's the human experience.

In a movie theater, we at least have the knowledge that the film we are watching is fictional, or in the case of 'Argo', a live dramatization of actual events. Regardless, usually the content is something that we don't often have to think about in our daily lives.  It's either something totally, fiction, something that happened in the past, or something that happened in another country.

But with a documentary, there's the realization that these are people who are (mostly) alive today and walking around. They are not historical figures (mostly), or fictional characters, but people whom events in their live have culminated into a story worth telling. THAT'S where this award comes in. It must be difficult to judge the human experience, and to judge which one was 'best', but alas it must be done in this award show.

Take a look at the posters below, and perhaps you can add som human experience to your next poster or banner design, that best reflects your missions as a company.

1) 5 Broken Cameras

A Palestinian farm worker documents a town's resistance and the response of the Israeli Defense Force, as a barrier wall in erected in the West Bank village of Bil'in. It spans over the course of many years and took 5 cameras to film.

This poster illustrates quite obviously what the content of the film is about. It's set in the Middle East, there are five cameras involved, and it's about a family with the the little boy in the foreground. I especially like the inclusion of soldiers in the background behind the man with the cameras. They're faint, easy to miss, but you can easily tell that the resistance will be violent.

2) The Gatekeepers

Six former heads of Israel's counterterrorism agency, Shin Bet, spill about their secrets and mistakes, even successes, within the agency and how the agency has shaped relations between Israel and Palestinians today.

What I love about this poster is the face: it's made up of six pieces, each one from  different ex-head of Shin Bet, showing that although they come from different backgrounds and had different policies, they still share the same umbrella and global pressure.

3) How To Survive A Plague

This film takes a look back at the growing response to the AIDS epidemic in the 1980's, when the riots, protests, and cries for treatment research were at their peak. They take a look at both sides: those who were in the crowds at the protests, and those who were in the labs, searching for a cure.

As some of you might remember, I have a fondness for minimalist poster designs, and this one is right up there in some of the best I've seen. You don't need a crowd of voices and pumped fists to get attention, sometimes you just need a singular image. In case you can't read it, the figure in red at the top says, "Treatment or Riot". Sums up the film pretty much.

4) The Invisible War

Not many people are aware of the rising sexual assault rate in the US Military. In 2010, there were 19,300 cases of sexual assault.  This film focuses on the women in our military, who were assaulted and are pressured to keep mum or find themselves ostracized from their comrades for speaking up.

This is a pretty sensitive subject, which just makes my skin crawl as I type this. To think that so many members of our military were being abused while fighting for our freedom is inexcusable. But this poster attests to a lot of that with a single image: a female soldier's face, with a look of such vulnerability, you'd have to be stupid to miss it.  Can't go wrong with close-up shot, but just make sure it's the one that says it all without words.

5) Searching for Sugar Man

Perhaps, this will be a nice change in pace. In the 1970's,  a singer and songwriter named Rodriguez, put out two albums, then disappeared in light of their failures. Two fans from South Africa decide to search for him and why he disappeared from his love of music.

This could also count as a minimalist poster. You've got the singer in question, strutting down a road with a guitar on his back, and with a purpose. Make me curious if they ever find him as well.


Well, there you have it folks! The five nominees for Best Documentary Feature at this year's Academy Awards.  Don't forget to tune in THIS SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 24th, fo the award show.

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