When it comes to schlock there's only one king: Roger Corman. After earning a rep as one of the quickest and cheapest directors around, Corman became a producer, espousing his method for making genre flicks to up and coming filmmakers like James Cameron, Joe Dante and plenty of others. With a career boasting 396 credits as a producer, 56 as a director and even 34 as an actor showing up in not just his own movies, but prestigious flicks like Silence of the Lambs
and The Godfather Part II
, no one can call the man a slacker. He's even still plying his trade today by producing the internet-friendly Syfy originals Dinoshark, Dinocroc vs. Supergator
With such a strong and epic film history to his name, we here at Topless Robot
figure it would be a good time to take a look at some of the man's most awesome and ridiculous movie posters as a way to celebrate Corman's 56 years in film (and counting). With so many to comb through, we kept the focus on movies he directed under his own name or helped out in uncredited ways. Get ready for a tour through some of the craziest sci-fi, western, horror and biker gang posters of all time. Keep in mind that some of Corman's best movies won't make the list because of lackluster posters and vice versa. This one's all about the art!
20) Frankenstein Unbound
Aside from a few uncredited assists that you'll see later in the list, Corman took a nearly 30 year break between directing gigs. He returned with Frankenstein Unbound
in 1990 and an interesting, but not stellar poster that doesn't really hold up to his past. As it is, the one-sheet looks more like a teaser for an over-caffeinated Pixar monster movie than the time-traveling take on Frankenstein it turned out to be.
19) The Oklahoma Woman
One of four movies Corman directed in 1956, The Oklahoma Woman
's poster stands out for a pair of reasons and we don't mean boobs. Well, technically, we do. You don't see a lot of western posters with women whipping men or two women either fighting or making out. And this was in the '50s! We fully support these elements making a comeback in modern westerns.
18) De Sade
Corman was originally attached to direct 1969's De Sade
, but bowed out knowing that censors would be a problem given the film's themes of wild sex and masochism. That didn't stop it from getting made, of course and the trippy film got a trippy poster that looks like the result of someone taking Moebius to an S&M club and telling him to draw a cat-o'-nine tails.
Known as both Gas-s-s-s
and Gas! - Or - It Became Necessary To Destroy The World In Order To Save It
, this 1971 flick features a bunch of hippies trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world (get used to that set up, by the way). The poster takes a rare departure as far as Corman's ads are concerned in that it simply features a picture of the cast in their wonderfully campy, retro futuristic costumes. The weirdness of the image raises lots of questions like how the heck did that guy in the middle get his hands on a Civil War uniform and why that dude in the back wants to look like Jack the Ripper?
16) Bloody Mama
is a pretty shitty movie, even with appearances by Bruce Dern and some kid named Robert De Niro. The most impressive thing this poster does is make the 1970 movie not look awful and also make star Shelley Winters look like a pretty formidable badass. Well played, poster, but we won't get fooled again.
15) Day the World Ended
Women in lingerie being chased by big monsters became a regular theme in Corman's movies, so you'll see a few examples of that. 1956's Day the World Ended
makes the list because of that rad looking three eyed monster with the horns and extra arms, but doesn't rank as high as the others because the girl looks kind of jacked up. Who the heck wears green fluffy slippers in a world ravaged by nuclear war?
14) The Trip
For some reason, the American version of the poster for the LSD-fueled Peter Fonda movie The Trip
(1967) was presented in mostly black and white. Luckily, the Italians know how to fix things and added some psychedelic color to the mix as well as an image of Fonda either super high or... being serviced. Or maybe both! Probably both.
13) Wild Angels
Another Peter Fonda flick, 1966's Wild Angels
also starred Nancy Sinatra and became Corman's first entry into the then-popular genre of motorcycle gang movies. The resulting poster looks like it should be the cover to the most epic biker gang comic book of all time.
12) The Beast with 1,000,000 Eyes
You've got to love how intrigued and possibly turned on the woman in the Beast with 1,000,000 Eyes!
poster looks. Shouldn't she be a little more terrified of the floating snake/cat/reptile/crab monster head intent on eating her? Maybe the Beast is just what she's been looking for all these years. Who are we to judge?
11) Ski Troop Attack
Nazi-killing skiers. 'Nuff said.