Alongside film trailers, posters are the paramount method through which film makers ensure their target audience become aware of their product. This media text is imbued with greater intention than merely to inform; its aim is to persuade using a number of techniques.
Is it ethical to produce posters that contain images that are not to be found in the film? The poster of Tsotsi is a collage of scenes, few taken from the film. A furore arose over Sweeney Todd when some members of the audience walked out when realising the film was actually a musical. It was said that the trailer failed to portray that it was, in fact, a musical.
Many also complained about National Treasure; many of the shots are not reflected in the film; much of the dialogue is also missing. Of course, trailers are often made before a film is finished, does it matter as long as it’s a fair representation.
Some may argue that the image from the poster of Tsotsi isn’t actually seen in the film itself, it could be perceived as a lie. However, the fact that it’s a collage taking different parts of the film and pasting them in one picture exaggerates its relevance. The collage informs and promotes, you can kill two birds with one stone. It’s the little detail within the poster that portrays the bigger picture.
From the foreground of the image the audience is intended to believe that Tsotsi is based around the life of a deprived black young man. The tin roofed hut connotes signs of poverty, as well as community, but the fact that he has his back turned to it indicates that he is moving forward. The weed that he has growing under him represents the growth of new life, literally as well as metaphorically. His crouched position could suggest both or one of two things: uncertainty, that he is having difficulty moving on in life and needs a hand, or that he is truly amazed of what lies in front of him. The shine in his eyes could imply the inspiration in his life and I think the baby...
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