Friday One Sheet: MUTE (And Neon Dystopia)
Cyberpunk is back, baby! The 2017 revisits to Blade Runner and Ghost in The Shell, two of the most popular cinematic representations of the subgenre (outside the Watchowski's commercially mainstream Matrix franchise) have paved the way for some new voices and new ideas. We have the deep pocketed streaming services exploring outward (where niche is king) with both a series made out of Richard Morgan's Altered Carbon novels, and now Duncan Jones' Mute.
Poster design in this field continues to take cues from the noir-detective and mega-metropolis space set by Ridley Scott's masterpiece of production design and mood. As the sub-genre solidified in the late 1980s (anyone remember the Shadow Run role-playing game), neon remained the order of the day. This is now starting to feel a bit retro-future, especially in the age of organic light emitting diodes, but man, it still works aesthetic wonders off of wet pavement.
Here, it is not just the sprawling urban jungle of lights (here a future-Berlin), that make a good poster, we're all familiar with that. No, like the memorable key art for Moon (of which I understand Mute is a kind of spiritual sequel) there is a 'geometry' in the design. Front and centre, those street-level neon arches, and their reflection, form a human mouth to frame the shoulder-hunched mute bartender and his story.