Very few people actually want to go through their last years alone, without someone to love in the twilight of their lives. I think of George Carlin’s line in Kevin Smith’s Jersey Girl when, confronted with his son and granddaughter moving out of his house, he admits simply that he doesn’t want them to go because he doesn’t want to die alone. Not only do most of us want the same thing but we’d prefer to have that someone be someone we love in romantic sense, someone that still sets our heart afire.
Lovely, Still is about just that desire. Martin Landau plays an older gentleman, Robert, who now lives all by himself. But one day a woman, Mary (Ellen Burstyn), enters his life and all of a sudden Robert finds himself pursuing a new romance, perhaps the first one in his life. So he seeks the help of the manager of the grocery store he works at (Adam Scott) while Mary is both encouraged and cautioned by her daughter (Elizabeth Banks) who she lives with across the street from Robert. These two people engaging in their own awkward but heartfelt courtship drives the movie, so let’s take a look at the marketing of it.
The primary element on the movie’s one poster is at the bottom, a photo showing Landau and Burstyn dancing in the woods as the snow comes down around them. Both are smiling genuinely and warmly as they embrace, obviously completely in the moment and enjoying being there with the entirety of their being.
At the top we get the movie’s credits, a couple pull quotes from reviews of the movie that took place all the way back in 2008 and a bit of copy that tries to outline what the movie is about. It’s simple and elegant, looking more like a high-class Christmas card you’d get from your grandparents than anything else and, being so under-stated and simple, works to sell the movie pretty well.
The trailer starts out by listing the movie’s credentials as it relates to film festival appearances. But then we start to see Robert in his lonely abode. But then Mary asks him out to dinner and everything changes. Robert asks his manager for dating advice and we see plenty of shots of the two of them on their dating adventures as we see them sledding down a hill and doing other stuff, including inviting Mary’s daughter and Robert’s manager over for dinner.
But it’s clear that there are problems that come up as one of the scenes we’re shown has Mary defending her decision to her daughter and then her confronting Robert about some issue that’s arisen. We don’t see what that is but it’s clear at some point the address just what is at the root of this latter-years romance.
It’s a quiet and simple trailer without a lot of emotional fireworks save for that one scene. Instead it’s mostly about letting us get to know these characters and feeling comfortable with them. It works also as a showcase for Landau’s considerable talents and it’s clear this movie relies on them heavily.
The movie’s official website opens with a page of pull quotes from various writer’s reviews of the movie, most of which are pulled from it’s 2008 Toronto Film Festival appearance. At least a couple of them actually have, then, links back to the full reviews so you can read them in their entirety if you wish.
More press quotes as well as a synopsis of the plot are found under the “About” section along with the full list of film festival’s it has appeared at.
Links to the movie’s Facebook and Twitter profiles are always there toward the top of the page but by visiting the “Social Networks” page on the site you can view the widgets for both those profiles and get a glimpse of the conversation there.
“Now Playing” shows where and when the movie is opening around the country. Finally, “Trailer” has just that.
Advertising and Cross-Promotions
Nothing much here.
Media and Pubicity
Again, not a huge amount of material in this category. The director, Nicholas Fackler, has been out pounding the drums about the movie but outside of the 2008 Toronto Film Festival debut there hasn’t been a whole lot of press chatter about the movie.
Obviously would have liked to have seen more in the Advertising and Media sections but this is a small movie that, for whatever reason, has sat on the shelf for about two years before finally seeing a release. So it’s not surprising that those aren’t more robust.
But the elements that are there – particularly the trailer and the poster, both work very well to sell a movie that by all appearances deserves to be seen by a sizable audience. Both Landau and Burstyn seem to give fantastic heart-melting performances that, based on what’s shown, don’t veer into caricature or anything like that. So based on those two elements alone this is a good push for the movie.