The people who appear in movie posters inhabit a strange alternate reality even more fantastic than the movies themselves -- a place where the basic rules of space and common sense aren't so much "different" as "nonexistent." It's easy to overlook how ridiculous these posters are when you're just glancing at them, trying to decide which movie will make you hate yourself less for spending $8 to see it, but once you start paying attention, you can't help but notice things like ...
#5. Stalingrad Takes Russian Indifference to the Extreme
Action movies have conditioned us to associate an actor's indifference toward devastating destruction with badassedness, rather than, you know, being a soulless shell of a human being. Combine this trend with the Russian people's legendary inability to give a single shit and the result is the poster for Stalingrad, in which a giant plane is set to crash just above the scene and not one of the eight actors is even looking at it. Some men just don't care to watch the world burn.
"Highest grossing" doesn't include shirtless Putin horse videos.
This is really some next-level stuff. Stalingrad takes the characters' mindsets from "I'd rather be doing something else" to "I will actually do something else as the world falls apart around me, just watch." For instance, this lady is waiting for her bus to arri- hold on, is that guy playing a piano?
"I'm Russian. Haven't we established that we don't give a fuck by now?"
Look at his face. He's clearly going "So Adrien Brody played the piano in the safety of a studio while bombs were falling all the way outside? Wow, that's so badass. No, seriously, tell me more." Also, the extended version of the poster gives us a better look at the girl in blue in the back, and it turns out she's just sitting on some luggage, looking kinda unimpressed with all the destruction.
Or with the guy who's clearly trying to fight the fire by pissing on it.
#4. X-Men: Days of Future Past Is Filled With Weird Poses
The X-Men franchise is a never-ending source of imaginative concepts, cool characters, and deeply, deeply stupid movie posters. And guess what: They have no intention of changing that. For instance, marvel at this MC Escher drawing made into flesh:
20th Century Fox
"Isn't Charles supposed to be the one with the fucked up spine?"
Why are Magneto's legs facing one way and his torso facing the other? His head matches the direction of his legs, so why is he in that horribly uncomfortable position? Also, how? Seriously, stand up and try to do what he's doing. You can't, because you aren't an abomination of nature.
Meanwhile, Wolverine's poster posture almost looks normal, until you realize he's not in the air.
20th Century Fox
SPOILERS for the Bollywood dance number at the end.
So ... is he just standing with one foot up? That looks less like Wolverine jumping into an attack and more like one of Hugh Jackman's Broadway characters finishing up a pirouette.
And finally, there's young hair-having Professor X doing his dramatic mind-reading stance ...
20th Century Fox
Or prepping for a really dramatic fart.
... which, when combined with his casual outfit, just looks like he's taking an important phone call.
"Goddamn paparazzi. Can't a man order cocaine and hookers in peace?"
#3. Romantic Films Don't Understand How People Lie Down
Lying down with a romantic partner is usually either a struggle for control of the sheets or a motion to lock parts together. Consequently, beds are designed to comfortably fit the length and width of a couple of humans. When you lie down with another person, your feet should be relatively close to one another's, but apparently this small fact never came up when the (clearly extraterrestrial) designers of the posters for The Fault in Our Stars and Endless Love were researching human mating customs.
20th Century Fox, Universal Studios
"Sir, we believe their genitalia to be located in their nasal regions."
Endless Love is a little bit closer to the mark, and almost looks normal ... until you look at the rest of the photo below. For this to make sense, it's like they arranged two beds in an L shape and decided to go from there, as if it would affect their sexual feng shui.
"He hums the Tetris theme every time we make endless love."
And speaking of lying down and baffling movie poster decisions, check out the French and American posters for Jeune & Jolie (Young & Beautiful) and see if you can spot the subtle difference:
Mrs. Pitt is looking rather buff lately.
Yes, the American one cropped out a tiny portion of the dude's back, because of the different cultural sensibilities and all. In Taiwan, however, they are apparently all about the man-butt.
Or something-butt, since that is not a human neck.