The Best Movie Posters of 2013

Published 8 months ago by , Updated December 30th, 2013 at 6:05 am, This is a list post.

Best Movie Posters 2013 - Pacific Rim, You're Next, Iron Man 3 There's an old saying that applies to how we picked our twelve favorite movie posters of 2013: "I may not know art, but I know what I like." We don't look for one or more specific things when deciding which posters we think are the best, but when a poster stands out to us among the more than two thousand submissions each year, we have to include it. Let's take a look at all the 2013 movie posters we would proudly hang on our walls...

42

42 Movie Poster This poster for 42 - the story of baseball legend Jackie Robinson - does more than just get on base, it hits a home run, too (sorry for the pun). The beautiful Brooklyn Dodger blue font pops on the clean background, and we really like the untraditional choice of showing Robinson sliding down the side of the poster - as opposed to sliding across the bottom - reminding viewers of what Robinson was famous for...stealing bases.

The To-Do List

The To-Do List Movie Poster We have a soft spot for hand-drawn movie posters, which is why we find ourselves pulled toward this one for The To-Do List. Cartoon-style movie posters are not new in Hollywood and not all them are done well. However, this one manages to give the viewer a lot of details about the movie without actually giving away anything - that's not a simple task to accomplish. We wish the poster listed the name of the actual artist so we could give them credit, but sadly, they aren't mentioned anywhere that we could find.

Almost in Love

Almost in Love Movie Poster We really like the oil-on-canvas feel of this Almost in Love poster. The creators did a nice job choosing interesting colors that work well together while standing out at the same time. This is just a simple, clean concept that studios should attempt more often. Not every poster needs to be jammed packed with characters, scenery and names. A poster like this could easily hang on the walls of any art gallery and blend right in (minus the wording, of course).

Only God Forgives

Only God Forgives Movie Poster While director Nicolas Refn didn't quite get the critical accolades for Only God Forgives that he did for Drive, this poster for the movie is just too cool for us to ignore. Seemingly drawn from the brightly glowing neon signs that dot some of the seedier areas of Bangkok - where Refn's story is set - this poster also seems to be partially inspired by Rizon Parein's neon sign posters for Drive. When done properly, neon signs are beautiful to look at, and a neon sign version of this poster hanging on our walls would please us greatly.

The Conjuring

The Conjuring Movie Poster Several posters for horror movies made it into our top 12 this year, beginning with this creepy and hauntingly beautiful poster for The Conjuring. Looking at this poster, the viewer can determine several things: 1. Bad things have or will happen in that house. 2. Someone hanged themselves in that tree....and OMG THERE SHE IS! Posters rarely do a good job of representing exactly how creepy a horror movie might be, but we think this one accomplishes the goal nicely.

Pacific Rim

Pacific Rim Movie Poster While Guillermo del Toro's giant monster flick Pacific Rim wasn't the domestic box office hit Warner Bros had hoped, this poster still makes us excited to see all the robot-on-monster action the movie has to offer. As with most summer blockbuster movies, the studio released dozens of posters promoting this film, but this one - with artwork by artist Sergio Grisanti -  is hands down our favorite. It reminds us of a day when classic Saturday morning cartoons like Tranzor-Z and Voltron dominated the airwaves and makes us want to watch the movie all over again.

You're Next

You're Next Movie Poster Another horror/thriller movie poster making it onto our list this year is this interesting one for You're Next. Without giving too much away, the poster shows the viewer the following: there are three assailants, six victims, they'll all be in a house and an oddly-shaped fox mask is involved. Choosing to place the architectural plans of a house inside the mask was a smart move by the poster's creator and we like it a lot. Honestly, that's enough to pique our interest in the film without ever watching the trailer.

Man of Steel

Man of Steel While not everyone at Screen Rant agrees with Editor-in-Chief Kofi Outlaw that Man of Steel was the best superhero movie of 2013 (I personally place is number two behind Thor: The Dark World), we DO all agree that this poster is one of our favorites. Unlike the cluttered and confused mess of a poster that was Thor: The Dark World, this poster keeps things simple, stoic and cool. In our opinion, this would have looked better with no text - just the image of Superman shooting into the sky and the iconic red "S" under him - but we're sure for marketing reasons, that wasn't possible.

Iron Man 3

Iron Man 3 Movie Poster You may notice some similarities between this poster for Iron Man 3 and the Man of Steel one listed in the previous slide. Both feature images of the lead character streaking upward, but this one does it without all the extra text. It's essentially the only reason why we placed it higher than Man of Steel. The movie may have been divisive among fans - some people love the twist, some people hate it - but for us, this poster is all "hit."

The Last Exorcism Part II

The Last Exorcism Part II Just looking at this poster for The Last Exorcism Part II creeps us out in an nightmare-inducing way - and that's why it lands so high on our list. Unlike the subtle imagery used in The Conjuring poster, the creators for this poster went with a clever and much more horrific image to promote this film - and it works astonishingly well.

World War Z

World War Z Movie Poster Most of the posters released to promote the apocalyptic, zombie-themed World War Z were bland and generic shots featuring star Brad Pitt staring in disbelief at the destruction before him - until this one. This poster reached out and grabbed our attention in a way the others didn't - so much so that we decided to make it number two on our list. Like most of the other posters we've highlighted, the creators make good use of simply imagery to express what the movie is about - mayhem, destruction and, of course, zombies.

X-Men: Days of Future Past

X-Men Days of Future Past Movie Poster In 2011, we placed two posters for X-Men: First Class at the "top" of our Worst List because they were an uninspired, horrible mess. Now, only two years later, X-Men: Days of Future Past tops our Best List - and it's well-deserved. Blending two actors whose ages are separated by nearly 40 years (Michael Fassbender is 36, Ian McKellen is 74) is a difficult feat to pull off, but to do it this well is extraordinary. Every single element of overlap is seamless - down to the lips, ear and even hairline. There's no question in our minds that it's the best poster this year.

Best Movie Posters 2013 - Only God Forgives, The Conjuring, Man of Steel We had several other posters this year that were excellent but just barely missed the cutoff for being in the top 12. You can see our picks for Best and Worst Movie Posters in 2011, Best Posters of 2012, Worst Posters of 2012 and, of course, don't forget to take a peek at our Worst Posters of 2013. Which posters did you like this year? Follow me on Twitter - @MoviePaul - and let me know.
TAGS: 42, iron man 3, man of steel, Only God Forgives, pacific rim, The Conjuring, the last exorcism 2, The To-Do List, world war z, x-men days of future past, You're Next

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  1. No Godzilla?

    • I love those posters as well but i suppose since its a 2014 film, they will put those in their 2014 posters list? thats what I’m thinking.

      • No, on the Worst Posters article, Paul said he put The Wolverine on last year’s Best Posters list because the poster itself released in 2012. Godzilla would qualify as a 2013 poster.

        • Plus X-Men: DOFP doesn’t release until 2014 but it’s on the list for 2013 posters.

          • ah, I guess they just didn’t think any of those posters qualified for the top 12 this year. disappointing.

          • This is a list of “The Best Movie Posters of 2013″, not a list of ‘The Best Movie Posters of films that released in 2013′.

            The DOFP posters were released this year, even if the film wasn’t.

      • @Draagyn – Dazz is correct. The Godzilla poster WAS considered for 2013 because that is when the poster released. I like it but just didn’t “do it” for me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very much looking forward to seeing the film but if I was going to include a Godzilla poster it would be this one that Mondo did for Comic Con 2013 – http://concertposter.org/-2013AUG-B/Godzilla-Red-drop.jpg -.

        I try not to include Mondo posters in the line up because then they would all be Mondos, hah.

        Paul Young

  2. My favorite is still the Man of Steel poster where he’s handcuffed in the hall. I need it on my bedroom wall, so bad!

    • Only if it is framed.

  3. No Godzilla makes me sad. That shot of his tail with the helicopters flying above it was just the most epic poster I’ve seen in years.

    Also, I still don’t agree with MOS being so high up the SR team’s list of best superhero flicks of the year. Mine is The Wolverine, Thor 2, IM3, MOS. So there. :P

    I liked the Evil Dead poster too, just that shot of the cabin and Mia’s mud-covered leg as she stares at it.

    • Honourable mention to V/H/S 2 creating a skull made out of videotapes.

  4. The poster for The To Do List may have been created by Ken Perkins.
    Quote: “If you’re too lazy to walk that far, have a gander at the surprisingly cool new poster above, which was illustrated by Ken Perkins and seems very unlikely to appear at your local multiplex. But you never know.”

    http://badassdigest.com/2013/07/23/check-out-this-awesome-to-do-list-poster-and-interactive-trailer/

    • @Toni – Thanks for the info. I’ll add his credit to the poster.

      Paul Young

  5. That Pacific Rim poster is very cool!

  6. All very cool, especially the Only God forgives and Pacific Rim posters.

    But the Hunger Games: Catching Fire IMAX poster should have also been on the list!! That was my personal favorite of the year

      • I so do agree.

      • That is a very nice poster. I like it. Easily in my top 10 along with the Man of Steel one, The Wolverine Poster, the Pacific Rim Poster, the Iron Man Poster, the X-Men Poster, and the Captain America Poster of just his Sheild extremly messed up and paint all scratched off is great and effective as well. Well I guess thats only 7.

      • @Erwood – That is a pretty great poster but I never saw it. I don’t know where I would place it or who I would bump for it (remove To-Do List, place it #5 or #6 maybe?) but I definitely like it. Thanks for the link.

        Paul Young

  7. My favorite poster of 2013 was nebraska’s
    It was like inviting you inside woody’s head
    Nebraska
    What a great movie

  8. No love for The Wolverine’s ink blotched poster? That was the best IMO!

    • I think so far in the comments, we have several that could push some choices out of Paul’s list (other than the Hunger Games one, sorry, it doesn’t look that good to me), including that Wolverine one.

      I think for the most part, the list is just a mix of personal opinion and a shout out to different styles of poster although I have to admit, this is the first time I’ve seen those MOS and IM3 posters.

      • @Dazz – You’re correct. Here’s how we put lists like this together (yes, we DO have a process):

        1 – Starting 12/1, I scour several large sources and select every poster that catches my eye. Usually 35-40.
        2 – I narrow down the selection to 15-18 and send the list to all of our writers
        3 – We decided which ones should stay in the top 12 then generate an order

        Obviously, all of the writing is my personal opinion (along with some influence from other writers) but the entire list isn’t necessarily my opinion.

        Hope that clears things up a bit. :D

        Paul Young

  9. 1. Only God Forgives (dragon head poster)

    2. Pacific Rim

  10. The MOS poster could maybe have got around the text issue if a wordless version had been released, and an additional version with the text in an outer border or frame, as happened with the 1978 Superman poster. http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-fsGJaeikbHc/UbRs3_Krn4I/AAAAAAAAC1g/wr41EQDi6Hw/s1600/superman-the-movie-poster.jpg Striking and unusually minimal for its time, although having just the tagline did lend itself to people graffiting it with a simple L and D either side of the S, as I recall. You’ll believe a man can fly, indeed…

  11. “Every element of overlap is seamless” If you’re standing a feet away from it yeah. Just by glancing at it from a computer screen you can see the eyes, nose, and side of the face are off. Still a cool poster though, but “seamless”? No way.

  12. Nice list Paul! I definitely agree with it much more than the “Worst Posters” article. I like to keep a folder each year of my favorite posters (for reference and inspiration) and a couple weeks ago I went through the 2013s and pulled just about every one of these, except the Exorcist one. I don’t know why, it’s a cool concept, but it’s just so goofy to me. And I totally agree, that MoS poster would be so brilliant if it were just a teaser without the billing at the bottom… but I still love it!

    Anyway, good picks! :)

    • @idothisforaliving – Thanks man. If you look at these selections, then go and look at the Worst selections, you can see a definite difference in quality. A lot of people’s order and/or selections might differ from mine (opinions and all) but there’s no arguing that there posters are better than the list lol.

      I still need to email you.

      Paul Young

      • @Paul Young – Yeah there is definitely a HUGE difference between the Best and Worst posters haha. I often have this conversation with people at work about what is the best and what is the worst. Obviously there is no right or wrong answer, but it’s always a fun conversation.

        Anyway, feel completely free to email me. I love talking about this stuff!

  13. The X-Men poster, wow! The first time I saw it I thought, “Who the hell has Bryan Singer cast now?”, then after reading your description it totally blew me away. Genius.

  14. I like the movie posters of 2013. That being said most of them now a days are Photoshop’ed I liked it when most movie posters where hand painted and hand drawn back in the late 70′s , 80′s and the early 90′s. I wished so many movie posters where not Photoshop’ed so much.

    • @Kenny – I completely agree with you. I was sad to see a lack of “hand-drawn” posters this year.

      Paul Young

  15. There are some great posters here. The thing that bothers me is that none of the great/minimalist/simple posters never get used for the international market. For international posters (like with The Dark World, Iron Man 3, Prometheus etc.), the designer (or whoever it is, like the suits) decides to clutter the poster with floating heads, big battles and explosions. Less is more!

  16. I adore that Man of Steel poster. As soon as I saw it, I knew I had to have it for the wall next to my Dark Knight poster. so good. The Jock Iron Man 3 poster is pretty rad too, but out of my price range.

  17. why have i not seen 90% of these posters?…are they only in the US.

  18. I love how my comment is deleted because i dissagreed with the almighty dc fan boys that comprise this staff.

    • @John – What are you talking about? This is your first comment on this article. Plus, we only have 1 DC movie listed and 2 Marvel movies listed (one in the top spot no less) and if you’ll check the Worst List, we have 1 Marvel (Thor) listed and 0 DC listed.

      But yeah, we’re HUGE DC fanboys on this staff. *eyeroll*

      Paul Young

  19. @Paul Young-

    What about The Worlds End poster with the pub sign with the asteroid on it? That poster really caught my eye.

    What was your opionion on that one?

    • Lol, I meant to write the one with the Earth burning up

    • @clay – I liked that one as well. It was on my initial short list, actually.

      Paul Young

  20. Cult Classic. This film is only known for how bad it was. Remake it, it will suck again, then in 10 years, reboot it again and it can suck a 3rd time.

  21. The Man of steel poster has striking similarity with my 2010 poster titled Superman Lives…http://gtr26.deviantart.com/art/Poster-190718413

  22. The Last Exorcism II is subtle in it’s own way. The girl and her shadow form the number 2. If the Last Exorcism was the last one, why was a 2nd movie made?

  23. Only 2 of these (Conjuring, Exorcism) actually attract me to the movie. Man of Steel and X-man are neutral, The other 7 actively discourage me from seeing the film.

  24. What about the “Don’t Let Go” version posters for Gravity? Stark black / dim starfield, tiny Sandra Bullock floating away from the frame. 2 names, Movie title, legal crap. Does an excellent job of saying what the movie is about without really giving anything away.

    I saw a giant billboard version of it and it scared the crap out of me (granted I was already terrified by the premise) and made me really excited for the movie release.

  25. At first i didn’t realize that the poster of x-man actually shows two persons.. god job ^^

  26. If these posters were supposed to convince me, they did a poor job of it. Actually did go see two of the movies, but for other reasons. Iron Man 3 was pretty good. M.O.S. was just as bad as I expected it to be. That nearly black outfit instead of the regular red and blue is the first thing wrong. Then several scenes just had no originality at all. Same dialog as in the Superman animated series. Of course, I am of the opinion that all superhero movies should be animated. Live movies change to much of the hero’s ackground and looks to be really enjoyable.

  27. you guys have low standards if you think these are the best movie posters… how sad

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