Pity the propmaster, who don’t get nearly enough props. His or her job is rarely celebrated but very important, as all of these empty coffee cup drinkers will let you know implicitly. Jackie Chan movies live or die on the strength of their props; the way a kitchen fight or a bar fight will involve chafing dishes and beer steins in acrobatic kung fu action. But even in comedies and dramas, props are the molecules that make up a film’s DNA. Think of all the esoteric knickknacks make up Wes Anderson’s visual landscape. Each of them tells a tiny story that supports the larger story at hand. A new series shows what it might look like of those props were used to sell the movie’s story in a poster.
U.K.-based poster artist Jordan Bolton has recently unveiled a series called Rooms. In it, he arranges a selection of a film’s most memorable objects to conjure its essence, set against a color palette that’s also reflective of the work. The aforementioned Wes Anderson, truly a high prince in the world of artful props, is doubly represented here, with tributes to his Moonrise Kingdom and Fantastic Mr. Fox both on hand. Movie stars are recognizable and draw people into theaters, but these images are infused with cinematic soul, offering hints of the tone, era, and level of detail in a movie. In other words, they’re way better indicators than Giant Floating Heads of whether you might enjoy what you’re about to see.