Beware of the Axe Killer Cowboy!

By on May 6, 2024

John B. Stetson was born on May 5, 1830. The Postercowboy saw the light of this world on the exact same day, 134 years later. Which could be merely a coincidence, of course.

Be that as may, yesterday marked my 60th birthday. I actually couldn’t care less about birthday celebrations, but Mrs. Postercowboy has a decidedly different attitude towards these matter, so yesterday I was in for a surprise party.

Welcome to

Woodcutter Berlin

where we met a few close friends and spent the afternoon throwing axes! I had actually heard about this place before and always thought about going there but it ended up being one of the things I never got around doing and eventually forgot about.

Silly as it may sound, throwing axes is actually a lot of fun! Like any other sport, it does take some training to really get the hang of it, but it is serious fun from the very beginning. The first things they teach you at Woodcutter is the overhand throw, as seen in the image below. I did ok with that, but not great either.

Back in my teenage days, I liked to throw knives, mostly practising an underhand swing. Turned out ‘trick shot’ axe throwing uses pretty much the same technique I trained back then. Though I haven’t thrown a knife for about 45 years, the underhand throw came back quite natural and I turned out to be pretty good at it. Not that I could actually aim the axe, but hitting the board turned out a fairly easy task from the get go. Not bad for a first day I thought.

Advertising Break: I just checked my website and noticed that while I have a number of posters for William Castle’s gimmick films (that can all be seen HERE) what I do not have is a US Onesheet movie poster for HOMICIDAL, the one with the wonderful tagline ‘WARNING! Strait-Jacket vividly depicts axe murders!’ What a crying shame.

But since it was my birthday, I was in for my own privat axe murder! I managed to slice up my victim from the bottom with a couple of throws, so that its ‘sweet meats’ fell out but the entire thing stayed intact and I could take it home for a souvenir.

After the successful kill, the guys from Woodcutter made a Polaroid:

I think this turned out quite amazing, looks to me like something that could’ve come from a 1970s stalker and slasher movie. I love it!

To complete a perfect afternoon, we had burgers. Sixteen or sixty: Who cares!!!

Continue Reading

Spring in Berlin!

By on April 6, 2024

Today we have 23° C (73° F) and sunshine in Berlin and, as always in the first days of spring, the city becomes so much attractive!

The Postercowboy has always been a fashion victim of his own device, so this a great opportunity to show off a couple of recent aquisitions: As much as I love my felt cowboy hat Texas Hatters ( made for me many moons ago, it is decidedly too warm for summer, so I was looking for an alternative. I ended up getting a Stetson Open Road in vented straw:

Stetson invented this model in 1937. It has been around ever since and has been worn by presidents and entertainment stars alike.

Currently, Stetson shows an image of Lyle Lovett on their homepage with his Open Road. That’s the guy who wrote ‘Don’t touch me Hat’:

If it’s her you want
I don’t care about that
You can have my girl
But don’t touch my hat

If you’re not familiar with this one, look it up on Youtube. Great guy, great song.

Also, after some 30+ years I decided to retire my Ray Bans and upgrade to a pair of Persol 649 sunglasses. This model has been around since the 1950s, but it was of course made famous by Steve McQueen who wore them prominently in THE THOMAS CROWN AFFAIR and also briefly in LE MANS, THE GETAWAY and BULLITT.

Advertising Break: I have a really nice linenbacked THOMAS CROWN AFFAIR Onesheet for sale:

And just in case anyone has a nice condition copy of the original German poster that shows the Persol glasses for sale: Please drop me a note!

Actually, McQueen did not wear the 649, but the folding version that is labeled 714. Needless to say, I was originally planning to get a pair of 714s, but my optrician said they don’t stock them any more because the folding mechanism is not very reliable and the screws come loose after a while, causing the frame to become instable. Obviously, I don’t need that. Plus, the folding mechanism has more metal bling-bling at the nose bridge and on the sides and they are almost €100 more expensive than the regular version.

These are pretty BIG glasses, much bigger than my old Ray Bans, but they do look mighty cool and I like them a lot.

Continue Reading

GROSSES KINO – Movie Posters at the Kunstbibliothek Berlin

By on November 8, 2023

The Kunstbibliothek Berlin is showing 300 original movie posters from their collection. Here are a few impressions.

What I really liked about the exhibition is that the focus lies on graphic design, not on important films. The exhibition is held on two floors, the upper one shows movie posters from 1905 to the 1970s, the lower floor covers the period from about 1980 to 2020, the most recent exhibit being a Teaser Advance US Onesheet for BARBIE.

I had the honor to assist the curators with a bit of expert advice (not that they needed to much of it, both Christina Thomson and Christina Dembney of the Kunstbibliothek did a very good job educating themselves on the subject).

They are also showing a part of my personal PLANET OF THE APES movie poster collection, with original release posters from 20 different countries. I thought I had taken photos of the POTA wall, but I either forgot or something went wrong… 🙁
A few of the posters are shown in person and the others in a digital slideshow, which works surprisingly well.

This being a vintage movie poster blog, this post will naturally focus on the upper floor. Generally speaking, my cultural perception and appreciation more or less ends in the early 1980s. That said, I was quite impressed by the wide range and the high level of creativity expressed in so many of the contemporary posters.

Here’s the entry hall of the museum, with a large and quite effective digital display:

The blue walls show posters in chronological order, while the red background signifies a certain topic. The exhibition starts off with a nice selection of silent film posters:

The absolute highlight of the Kunstbibliothek collection is of course the only surviving copy of the French billboard poster for METROPOLIS:

Part of the exhibition concept was to ask 26 celebrities with various ties to the movie business to name their favorite poster from the Kunstbibliothek collection. No disrespect to the other 25 participants, but in my perception, the only person who actually had something truly worthwhile to say about her choice was German filmmaker Ulrike Ottinger, who opted for the original release 1920 poster for Paul Wegener’s DER GOLEM:

There’s also the amazing German poster for FAUST (1926), together with a couple of original artworks for the film:

I knew that Karl Michel’s design won a movie poster contest. What I did not know: This was actually a contest held by UFA Studios for a FAUST movie poster with a surprising 359 participants! One of the runner-ups can also be seen in the first photo.

Another surprise was found on the ‘Paint and Pathos’ wall: From a collector’s point of view, most of the German posters shown are not overly special, some of them can still be found for a dime a dozen. With one exception: The original 1959 German poster for HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL (Das Haus auf dem Geisterhügel). Thirty years ago, I would’ve been willing to give an arm and a leg for this one. I was a huge fan of William Castle’s gimmick films and at the time, I had all the German posters as well as the US Onesheets for all of these films in my collection. The one exception being the HOHH poster shown here, which I had never even seen before. Live and learn…

Why they chose to include the German poster for CHAPLIN HEIRAT (Chaplin marries) shown below I have no idea. I have never been the biggest Chaplin fan to begin with, but I very much liked the German poster for THE PILGRIM shown on another wall. This one makes me think that Kermit the Frog was modelled after the Chaplin face on this poster. Then again, beauty does lie in the eye of the beholder as they say…

UPDATE: After speaking to the curators again, I learned that this is not a poster after all, but an original concept artwork.

A good part of the show is dedicated to the posters from Atlas Films and Neue Filmkunst Walter Kirchner. Most oldschool collectors and/or of more traditional movie art have no use for this type of poster at all, but their entirely unique designs make them quite an important part of cinema history.
A good number of the posters shown in the exhibition are for sale on this website, like Hans Hillmann’s amazing re-release poster for LAST YEAR IN MARIENBAD.

As stated before, I’m not overly interested in contemporary posters, but the lower floor is also very well curated and a pleasure to behold. Here’s a brief example:

Movie posters have been proclaimed dead for decades, but somehow they still survive. Another form of movie advertising that is almost dead by now is the housefront painting:

There’s only guy left in Berlin who still holds this tradition up and the exhibition shows a few of his works. I spoke to him at the opening and told me he’s going to retire next April, which will close this window of cinema advertising for good.

Last not least, a final impression from Potsdamer Platz. The place certainly looks a lot more atmospheric in the dark than it does in the daytime:

‘What is the film poster to us? An amusing flash in a crowded street, a faint chuckle, a brief distraction, perhaps even a cause for reflection. In any event, it is a chance for the fine artist to speak to an audience larger than even journalists might enjoy (…)
Van Gogh is said to have wished to see gaudily coloured prints of his paintings hanging in sailors’ pubs. Were he still alive, he would be making film posters.’
Walter Herzfeld, ‘Filmplakate’ in Die Weltbühne 25 (1929)

Van Gogh never got the appreciation he deserved during his lifetime. As far as the art world is considered, movie posters still share his fate. This exhibition is certainly a step in the right direction, so maybe there is some hope after all… 😉

Until March 3, 2024. Not to be missed.

Continue Reading

Movie Poster Spotlight: L’APOCALISSE (1947)

By on March 14, 2023

There are two things that I love more than anything else about being a movie poster dealer: First of all, for more than 25 years it has kept me from getting a job. Second, even after about 35 years in this hobby, I still frequently discover amazing posters I have never seen before. Like this one, that came in a few days ago:

This is an original release, country-of-origin Italian four-folio movie poster. It was printed in two sections and measures app. 55×79 in (140×200 cm).

L’APOCALISSE is a 1947 movie, the subtitle promises ‘A Ride through the Centuries’. The film apparently compares the debaucheries of the Roman Empire to the exaltations of Post-WWII Italy. If I understand the limited information I could find correctly, the basic message is that we should forfeit both sin and modern civilization, which is supposed to be more or less the same thing, and return to a simple and modest life in accordance with Christian rules and morals. Sounds like an interesting idea, but unfortunately this is another lost film. What a shame.

I’m not a believer in bold statements like ‘only known copy’ and such, but this is the first time I have seen this poster. In fact, I have only ever seen two other posters for this film, an Italian two-folio and a French Affiche from 1950. Both are no doubt extremely as well rare but also a tad underwhelming in my opinion.

This large Italian movie poster was created by the legendary poster artist Ercole Brini, and I find it absolutely striking. The structures in the top left apparently show a temple and the Colosseum of ancient Rome, while a post-WWII ruin is taking the right side. Both are connected by a girl who seems to have the fun of her lifetime. Or maybe it’s her last laugh, when we consider the two Horsemen of the Apocalypse right behind her.

A great design, and a worthwhile addition to any eschatological collection. Coming soon to the webshop.

Continue Reading

They Died With Their (Handmade) Boots On

By on March 10, 2023

One of the worst things that could possibly happen in the life of a Postercowboy is that he might die with a pair of CHEAP boots on his feet. Thanks to Berlin based bootmaker Korbinian Ludwig Hess this risk has once again been dramatically reduced.

Here’s a pair of entirely handmade, custom two-piece Wellington boots he recently built for me:

Handmade Cowboy Boots by Korbinian Ludwig Hess

I have been wearing cowboy boots for more than 40 years. Here are three pairs that Pablo Jass of Lampasas, TX built for me in the 1990s:

I absolutely love them, they are well made and sturdy as hell. Pablo mainly makes boots for the working cowboys in East-Texas, so they are built to last and they also look great. That said, when it comes to quality of craftsmanship, style and comfort, no other boots I ever owned even come close to the ones Korbinian Hess has made for me.

As you can see on the photo, the Wellington boot from Korbinian is made of only two pieces of leather. For the uninitiated, this may look like a fairly easy task, but everyone who knows a little bit about bootmaking knows that this work requires both serious skill and craftsmanship of the highest order. When I tried them on at his shop, we both agreed that they make me look like a Highway Patrolman, ain’t that something?

I also had boots of of great quality made by Little Boots in San Antonio, but what I always dreamed of was to own a pair made by Lee Miller of Texas Traditions in Austin. Here’s a fun portrait on the man:

Unfortunately, even almost 30 years ago when I frequently visited Austin, Lee had a wait list of three years. From what I hear, it now takes five years to get a pair of his boots.

Being based in Berlin, Korbinian Hess is much more famous for his highend, custom made dress shoes. A fews years ago, I read an interview with him in a Berlin newspaper where he talked about his personal passion for cowboy boots. So I called him up and asked him if he would be interested in making a pair for me. This was something he had never done before at that point, but he immediately agreed and ‘the rest is history’ as they say.

In fact, there are quite a few similarities between Korbinian and Lee. Both learned from absolute masters in their field: Korbinian Hess was trained by Rudolf Scheer in Vienna, one of the world’s most prolific shoemakers, Lee Miller worked for Charlie Dunn, whom many people still consider the best bootmaker who ever lived. Korbinian is also one of the nicest and most humble people you could meet and from all I hear, the exact same thing is true for Lee.

And what I find even more amazing: Korbinian in Berlin and Lee Miller in Austin are in a frequent exchange over the secrets and fine details in the art of making both shoes and cowboy boots.
Every maker has his own style of course, but due to the personal connection between the two I like to imagine that I’m now wearing a pair of Charlie Dunn’s ‘by proxy’… And I didn’t even have to leave Berlin to get them. How cool is that?

Of course, nothing beats custom made boots or shoes, but for those who don’t want to wait or shy the expense, Korbinian has also started a limited range of ready-to-wear handmade shoes. They are manufactured by the highest and can be ordered directly from his shop:

For a pair of custom made boots or shoes you will still have to visit Berlin, of course.

And for those who couldn’t care less about cowboy boots (and this is supposed to be a vintage movie poster blog after all), the poster you see in the background is the rare no-reviews original release US Onesheet for BLOOD SIMPLE, that will be coming to my website sometime soon:

BLOOD SIMPLE original US Onesheet

Continue Reading

Happy Holidays!

By on December 24, 2022

Another weird year at Casa Postercowboy comes to an end and once again it is time to say thank you to all of you out there who supported me through the year.

I still find it amazing that I managed to survive in the movie poster business for 27 years by now, 23 years as a full-time business, and 19 years as a shop owner. It has not always been easy, but every single day of the year, it still beats getting a job!

When I opened my first shop in 2004, Galerie was the only gallery in Germany that exclusively sold vintage, international movie posters. Almost twenty years ago, online competitors have come and gone, but I STILL own the only shop in Germany that sells nothing but old film posters.

What’s next?

So what else is new? I have quite a lot of new material lined up that will have to go on the website over the next months. The new material includes more than 1500 German movie posters from 60s, 70s, and 80s. I have about 300 German arthouse movie posters from Atlas/Kirchner distribution, roughly 100 martial arts film posters, a large number of film or actor related exhibition posters, and more.

Plus a small collection of STAR WARS movie posters (I’m almost sold out on the subject right, but more material is on the way) and a hand-picked collection of pre-war German movie posters, including several amazing designs. Both lots should go up on the website by February. Please be aware that I cannot answer any questions or fill want lists on the upcoming new additions.

Last not least, I have a lot more ideas for this blog, but I’m still fairly new to this matter and I had to learn that writing a blog is A LOT more work than I initially thought. Still, it is fun and I sincerely hope that I will find more time to donate to this project next year. There are still lots of infos and stories about vintage movie posters in my head that I would like to share with you over time.

I will take a few days off until the end of the year, but I will frequently check my emails. All open orders will ship between the years and I am also available for appointments at the shop.

I wish you all happy holidays and a healthy and successful start into 2023!

Best wishes,

Helmut Hamm

A CHRISTMAS STORY original release German movie poster

Continue Reading

NIGHTMARE ALLEY (1947) Revisited

By on October 25, 2022

NIGHTMARE ALLEY was originally released in 1947, re-released in 1956 and then vanished entirely for almost 50 years, apparently due to some legal struggle. The film is missing from many Film Noir anthologies, for the simple reason that nobody had a chance to see it.

This post may contain spoilers, so if you have not seen the film, it might be a good idea to do so before you continue reading.

The film has gained a legendary status over the years, and rightfully so. Among others, Anton Szandor LaVey, the founder of the Church of Satan and an ex-carny himself, quoted NIGHTMARE ALLEY as his favorite movie. Dr. LaVey was fortunate enough to have seen in the cinema, the rest of us had to wait until it finally came out on DVD in 2005. It is now available on Blu-Ray as well, both in the US from Criterion and for the UK and Europe from SignalOne Entertainment. Both versions use the same 4K restored print, which looks amazing. Both are region blocked, so unless you have a region-free player, your choice is somewhat limited. They contain different extras as well. As of today, both versions are available online for about $20, so if you have ANY interest in Classic Film Noir, this is a wise investment and highly recommended. These will probably not be around forever.

The movie is based on the novel by William Lindsey Grisham with the same name. Much has been said about the quality of the film and what’s in it, so this post focuses on what’s NOT in the movie.
Keep in mind, this came out in 1947, with the Production Code still safely in place, so there were strong limitations to what could and what could not be shown.

No Freaks

The movie does a very good job a depicting the carnival life of the 1940s. This was an A-Production, it cost quite a good deal of money, and it shows. In fact, an entire carnival setting was installed for the filming. At the time, freaks were still an integral part of the traveling carnival world, yet we do not see a single one of them. The geek makes a brief appearance, but he is of course an integral part of the story. Not a single other freak anywhere.

We can only speculate on the reasons, but this film was released only 15 years after Todd Browning’s now legendary FREAKS (1932) that shocked audiences and ended up as commercial failure. It was only two years later that it was picked up by Dwain Esper and sent on a Roadshow circuit.

So I guess the producers did not want to make the same mistake again.

No Sex

In the book, it is pretty obvious that Stanton Carlisle has sexual relations with all three leading women he encounters. Nothing of that can be seen in the film. In the book, it is pretty obvious that he takes Molly’s virginity after saving her from a prison sentence. Not even a hint of that in the movie, but the carnies force him to marry her in a shotgun wedding, so the viewer is left to his own conclusions.

Also his relationship to Zeena (who’s character is described much more vividly in the book) is limited to one passionate kiss, and there is no indication that anybody beyond that has happened.

Lastly, he openly refuses the (for the time) very outspoken invitation of Dr. Lilith Ritter, his psychiatrist.

No Religion

In the book, Stanton calls himself a Reverend, and (if I remember correctly) he is even setting up his own church. When Molly accuses him of his immoral behavior in the film, he makes it very clear that he ‘never used the Lord’s name in vain’. Quite obviously, he has no problem with being a charlatan, but he strongly rejects any accusation of blasphemy. Which may of course be part of his act. On the other hand, the US always were and still are a strongly religious country.

No Murder

While NIGHTMARE ALLEY has all components of a classic Film Noir tale, it does not contain a murder.
In fact, only one person dies in the film, and while Stan clearly (and relentlessly) profits from the demise, the death is indeed accidental.

The Guilt

Both in the book and movie it is obvious that Ezra Grindle suffers from a guilt complex in connection with his long-lost darling. In the movie, the background is never explained. In the book, it is made clear that she had an abortion, which apparently lead to her demise. We can also speculate that Ezra Grindle was both the father of the unborn child and convinced her to have that intervention.

The Conclusion

Needless to say, the film is a product of its time, and all these omissions were obviously necessary. The interesting point is: they probably make the movie even better. As Miles Davis put it: ‘The most important notes are the ones you do not play.’
On the other hand, reading the book allows a much deeper understanding of what’s going on. I’m not the only one out there who considers NIGHTMARE ALLEY both a personal favorite, but also ‘The Darkest Hour of Film Noir’. For me, it really does not get grittier than this.

The Movie Posters

I once owned the original release german movie poster, from the original release in 1954. I sold it a long time ago and still feel a bit of ‘seller’s remorse’ over this one. So if anybody out there has one for sale: Please drop me a note!

NIGHTMARE ALLEY original release German A1 poster

I still have the original 1947 US Onesheet, which has been on display in my home for at least 15 years:

NIGHTMARE ALLEY original US Onesheet

This one is obviously not for sale, but I certainly wouldn’t mind buying another one. Something else I am looking for would be original german lobby stills for this film, especially scenes that show carnival scenes.

Generally speaking: While I am not much of collector anymore these days, I’m always open to buy original German Film Noir posters from the 1940s and 50s.

Continue Reading

How to ship vintage Movie Posters securely

By on September 13, 2022

First and foremost, the Postercowboy is still a collector at heart. I may not be overly active when it comes to adding to a ‘private collection’ and this point, but, very much like most of my fellow dealers, I sure have that collectors gene.

One of the most frustrating things in the movie poster (or any other collectibles) hobby is to receive damaged goods. So you find something you have either been looking for or (even better) didn’t even know existed. You managed to secure it, you paid for it and you consider youself almost in heaven. And if you’re lucky to be able to pick your purchase up on person, that may well be true.

Unfortunately, in most cases, the purgatory of having your poster shipped to you comes first. In the biblical meaning, the purgatory means suffering for a limited time, but the end result is always heaven. (Those no-good-for-nothing sinners that are considered beyond redemption are supposed to go to hell straight away.)
I believe it should be exactly the same when it comes to buying collectibles online: The wait period and the suffering is usually unavoidable, but in the end you should find yourself in heaven.

Unfortunately, every now and then you will not. Every single long-time collector I have ever met can sing the song of the poorly packed order that arrived damaged, due to the abysmal packing and a careless seller. I once bought a fairly expensive US Onesheet from the 1930s. It had survived in absolutely perfect MINT condition and the seller had photos to prove it. He decided to roll it up and stuff it into an oversized Fedex triangle tube for shipping, without ANY protection at all. Needless to say, the poster arrived with heavily damaged borders. I could tell you dozens of stories like this one from my own experience only.

With that in mind, I want to make sure that everything you buy from Galerie arrives in the exact same condition we send it and we make quite an effort to insure this. Below is a brief summary of how we pack your posters.

Needless to say, the challenge here is to find a middle ground. Especially with international deliveries, a ‘bullet proof’ packing may drive the shipping costs to absurd heights. And if DHL or UPS or whoever decides to throw your package under a truck, there’s hardly anything anybody can do.

How we ship folded Movie Posters

Our folded posters are first sandwiched between slightly oversized, recycled cardboard:

In the next step, they are entirely wrapped in foil to prevent any possible moisture damage:

Finally, this package is wrapped in a sturdy book mailer:

We have been using this exact method for several years and never had a single problem.

How we ship rolled Movie Posters

Here’s how we pack rolled posters: These are first rolled up, and then rolled in corrugated cardboard that exceeds at least an inch (2,5 cm) on either side:

This roll is then wrapped in plastic and placed in a strong cardboard tube:

In a final step, the poster tube is placed in a square shipping tube:

Aside from the added protection, the square box has another advantage over a tube: It can’t roll off a cargo colli. Pretty much every time I had something lost in transit, it was a tube. Fortunately, almost everything showed up again sooner or later. Actually, I only remember one shipment to Canada, that was supposedly lost. To this day, I have a strong feeling that the buy received this without the required proof of delivery and decided to rip me off. But that is a story for another day of course.

My minimal loss rate does not necessarily indicate that the Postal Services are oh-so honest and reliable. Quite frankly, I believe that movie posters (vintage or not) are simply not overly attractive to mail thieves.

Even with the utmost care, there is no way to make 100% sure that your order arrives undamaged. In the unlikely case that the outer box is damaged, it is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT that you file a damage report with your delivery person IMMEDIATELY. Otherwise, there is no way to file an insurance claim.

For the record: While we use Deutsche Post DHL for most domestic shippings, we have now changed international deliveries almost exclusively to UPS and DHL Express. For most countries, including most of Europe, the UK, and the US we can offer fast delivery at VERY competitive rates.

Continue Reading

Feed the Person you want to be

By on August 23, 2022

Every year when summer comes, my local organic food store puts their sunshade up.

Every year I read the caption that says FEED THE PERSON YOU WANT TO BE…

Every year I wonder: Why would I want to feed Elvis Presley??? And how would that even be possible???

Btw, The King was not only the greatest Rock’n’Roll star this planet ever saw, he also made a good number of movies as well. Most of the films do not reach the quality of his stage performances, but JAILHOUSE ROCK from 1957 is very much worth watching, if only for his performance of the title song.

The US Onesheet is also my favorite movie poster for any Elvis film by far. As it happens, I have one in stock and available for sale:

JAILHOUSE ROCK original US Onesheet

Continue Reading

On the Subject of Dry Mounting Movies Posters

By on August 12, 2022

I received an email today asking me if it had been a good idea to have his original movie poster for MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO dry mounted. Here’s a sample image of the poster in question:

My Neighbor Totoro

The answer is: NO. NO. NO. And again: NO. Never ever have your vintage movie posters dry mounted!

Unfortunately, ignorant, run-of-the-mill frame shops still frequently recommend this technique. While it is widely accepted for modern photography and digital prints, it is an absolute no-go for vintage posters. It is also absolutely unacceptable to most serious collectors. Technically, dry-mounting is sometimes reversible, but it needs a highly skilled restorer to do so, and it does not always work. Also, depending on the glue that was used, ugly stains may remain on the back of the poster, so it would have to be rebacked to be presentable.

Basically, the only two backing options allowed are linenbacking and paperbacking, and both have to be performed by professional restorers. DO NOT try this at home! I do remember a seller from the Arabian world (but living in Germany) who took the word ‘linenbacking’ literally and backed several of his posters on cut-to-size, white duvet covers. With weird imprinted patterns and all. Needless to say, this is not the way to go either. More information on linenbacking and paperbacking can be found in my INFO section.

How to find a good frame shop

Which brings me to the question on how to find a trustworthy frame shop. Of course, if you have a vintage movie poster shop in your area, the easiest way would be ask the owner for a recommendation. If that is not possible, confront the person at the frame shop with the term ‘conservation framing’. For your information, the University Products website offers an excellent summary on the topic.

The frame shop of your choice should be able and willing to explain the process to you. If you get the idea that the framer does not really know what he’s talking about, find somebody else. I’m serious.
A good framer might cost you more money to begin with, but it will be worth the expense over time.

I did not get the idea that the owner of the TOTORO poster is interested in selling, but although this is my all-time favorite anime movie poster, it is extremely in demand and it has become very hard to find, and the prices have gone up dramatically I would most likely refuse to buy it dry mounted. In this condition, in my perception, the poster is worth 20% at best compared to an unbacked copy, so it’s just not worth the hassle. And of course, it would have to ship flat, which is another nightmare in itself.

I have occasionally bought dry-mounted movie posters in the past, but only if it was something extremely rare and desirable like this one:

Ciao! Manhattan original world premiere movie poster

This poster was printed for the world premiere screening on CIAO MANHATTAN in Amsterdam in 1972. It also comes with a great provenance and it is my favorite poster on the film. Truth be told, I bought this framed in an online auction, so I did not know it was mounted on art board. On the other hand, it’s such a nice piece and so extremely rare, I would have gone for it anyway.

Continue Reading