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Rhetorical Analysis: Chinese Zodiac Movie Poster Essay (Article)

This rhetoric analysis is based on a poster of the Chinese Zodiac movie. The movie was released on 20th December, 2012. The art used in the design was full of graphic enhancements. These enhancements made Jackie Chan to appear larger in size than the plane and the buildings behind him. This represents a typical use of metaphor. He must have outwitted all the odds before him and that is why they are apparently small in size compared to him. The image chosen accomplishes the intention of the message displayed in the poster.

Besides, a famous male character called Jackie Chan has been positioned at the center of the poster with a background of burning buildings. The picture of Jackie Chan is quite conspicuous in the poster; it creates an impression of courage and victory. He appears like a determined character ready to face any hurdle on his way with the aim of achieving his ambition. This captivates the mind of the intended audience and makes one to be interested in investigating whether he achieved his ambition.

The manner in which Jackie’s picture is displayed on the poster propels the audience toward a sense of humor. He is seen to be in an extremely dangerous situation. However, he does not appear to be worried. He also appears to be playful although it is the normal way he often behaves in most of his movies.

The above details are further stressed by the catchphrase on top of the poster. The slogan “never before action never-again” sends a vivid and eye catching message to the audience. The slogan is divided using two colors namely white on top, red at the center and also white at the bottom. The word “action” is conspicuously red in color. It gives the actual identity of the movie. There is yet another important slogan positioned at the top of the poster.

The slogan unveils the main theme of the movie. The watchword on top reads “his mission is to recover their heads, before they take his”. This message raises a lot of questions. The viewers of this poster are left guessing the meaning of the phrase. This is a strong message that attracts the attention of the audience. They are left in a state of suspense and hence become more interested in obtaining the entire content of the movie.

The name Jackie Chan is placed slightly above the title of the movie. This is a well known character in the action film industry. The use of a famous male character further strengthens the message being sent by the poster as a must watch movie. Even though the story is not described in the poster, the presence of such a character may insinuate victory based on his previous releases. Most of the Jackie’s movies are normally action-packed and also filled with a lot of fun and fantasy.

Therefore, the poster promises a humorous and yet frightening action movie. It is also worth to mention that Jackie has often been known to be a humorous actor of action movies. Apart from Jackie being an excellent movie actor, he is also a producer and a director at the same time. He is therefore the most important character in the movie bearing in mind that the storyline is based on his own creation. Since Jackie is a well known movie producer, it acts as a vantage marketing strategy to the targeted audience.[1]

Most of the zJackie’s movies are full of Chinese cultural heritage. This poster does not ignore the identity of Jackie’s movies. The title of the movie clearly depicts his identity. The poster title can be seen in the blurred dusty background. However, it makes it easy for the targeted audience to notice the title of the film. The title is also not a common one. The use of letters and numbers may have a lot of hidden meanings.[2]

For instance, the title “CZ12” is further complicated by additional Chinese phrases that seem to explain the meaning of the letters. The use of both English and Chinese languages in the title makes the movie to reach a wide range of audiences. Additional information about the movie is also written in Chinese language. It is definite that the questions being posed by the audience minds are numerous even as they watch the poster. For example, what do the displayed heads have to do with China?

The background of the title has blurred images that are covered in dust. This indicates a lot of destruction that took place in an effort towards recovering the ‘heads’. The Jackie Chan posture has also shows him carrying loaded bags. The bags carried by Jackie leave anybody who has looked at the poster wondering if those are the heads he intends to recover. His dressing style is also a center of attraction to the audience.

He has worn a strong, black leather jacket that compels the audience to be interested in obtaining the whole story behind the movie. This outfit displays a character who is ready for war. The word “CZ12” appears to be burning out. This is a satirical display of the name of the movie. It has been positioned slightly below Jackie’s luggage. It implies that the name of the movie is related with the contents of the luggage.

There is a helicopter just above the image of the main character. It seems to be a military helicopter. The display of the latter provides an extremely important communication to the audience. The process of getting the “heads” must be a very risky affair. In any case, Jackie has to risk his life in the process. He is seen to be running away from the plane. The plane seems to belong to the opposing forces or his enemy. This is an example of how picture metaphors can be used to communicate important messages.[3]

The poster has also credited several important contributors in the development of the movie. This indicates that the movie must have involved many companies in the production process. The latter is a marketing strategy since the movie has listed one of the world’s best known action movie producing studios.

The poster displays channels through which the producers and distributors of the movie can be reached. The contacts are at the lower right side of the poster. A common social media link is also used. This provides various means through which the movie can be found. The conspicuous YouTube link is a direct means that can enable any individual to access a preview.

The movie poster has no age limit. The poster makes the viewers to make their own independent choices on whether to watch the movie. It is one way of ensuring that the audience is not compelled into watching the movie.[4]

The only rating part is the deadly scene behind Jackie. This means that the targeted audience may be of any age who can withstand the action thriller.


“How to write.” AP Rhetoric Analysis Paragraphs and Essays. Web.

Roberts-Miller Trish. “Understanding Misunderstandings: How to do a rhetorical analysis.”Trish Roberts-Miller. 2013. Web.

“University Writing Center.” Rhetorical Analysis 2011. Web.


  1. “University Writing Center,” Rhetorical Analysis 2011.
  2. “University Writing Center,” Rhetorical Analysis 2011.
  3. Roberts-Miller Trish, “Understanding Misunderstandings: How to do a rhetorical analysis,” Trish Roberts-Miller.
  4. “How to write,” AP Rhetoric Analysis Paragraphs and Essays.

This Article on Rhetorical Analysis: Chinese Zodiac Movie Poster was written and submitted by user Peyton Yang to help you with your own studies. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly.

Peyton Yang studied at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, USA, with average GPA 3.46 out of 4.0.

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Yang, P. (2019, October 29). Rhetorical Analysis: Chinese Zodiac Movie Poster [Blog post]. Retrieved from

Work Cited

Yang, Peyton. "Rhetorical Analysis: Chinese Zodiac Movie Poster." IvyPanda, 29 Oct. 2019,

1. Peyton Yang. "Rhetorical Analysis: Chinese Zodiac Movie Poster." IvyPanda (blog), October 29, 2019.


Yang, Peyton. "Rhetorical Analysis: Chinese Zodiac Movie Poster." IvyPanda (blog), October 29, 2019.


Yang, Peyton. 2019. "Rhetorical Analysis: Chinese Zodiac Movie Poster." IvyPanda (blog), October 29, 2019.


Yang, P. (2019) 'Rhetorical Analysis: Chinese Zodiac Movie Poster'. IvyPanda, 29 October.

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