Unless otherwise noted in the post title, these are not
reviews, per se. They are articles for people who have already seen the film or read the book in question--meaning that there will be spoilers. If you're already familiar with the material being covered, or don't mind the plot being spoiled, please read on and leave a comment.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

The Driver of This Taxicab Has Seen ON THE BEACH!

On the Beach (1959) - advertisement

I've never actually seen 1959's ON THE BEACH from director Stanley Kramer.  I don't know why I haven't bothered to see it--it's a post-apocalyptic drama with Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner, Fred Astaire and Anthony Perkins.  It certainly seems like something I need to see, but that's neither here nor there.

I have always been fascinated with the above image, which I first saw in in the film's entry in one of Michael Weldon's PSYCHOTRONIC books.  I have been unable to find any relevant information on the image, which only intrigues me more.

Obviously this is an advertisement that would appear either in or on a taxicab, most likely in major metropolitan areas like New York, and appears to have been part of a word-of-mouth campaign for the film.  If I had to guess, I would say that cab drivers were given a free screening of the movie in exchange for placing the ad in their vehicle, which is really quite ingenious.  Cabdrivers are expected to hold conversations with their patrons, and patrons are often at a loss for what to talk to them about.  But if you saw this hanging in the cab, you've got an instant topic of conversation.

Indie regional films should think about making use of this sort of campaign, but don't stop at cabdrivers.  What about all of the other people you are forced to make awkward conversation with on a daily basis?  Bartenders...cashiers...psychiatrists!  The possibilities are endless.

That's marketing gold, baby.

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