Aloha Means Hello and Good-bye, Which Is What People Have Been Saying to One Aloha Billboard for a Full Year

In Chicago’s Logan Square, there looms a harbinger of the past, a billboard advertising Cameron Crowe’s spiritual, romantic-dramedy oddity Aloha. That’s right. Aloha’s controversy might have burned bright and fast, but its advertising remains, nearly a year after the movie’s May 2015 release, as a threat of something coming. Look, there are real, confusing legal reasons for the billboard’s incomprehensible longevity, but isn’t it more fun to believe that Aloha, a ludicrous movie in which Bradley Cooper howls at wolves and Emma Stone gives impassioned speeches about her “belief” in the sky (Vulture looked up and can confirm that the sky does indeed exist), has some kind of universal harmony that neither we nor Amy Pascal understand? The residents of Logan Square sure think so; they’re throwing the poster a party! On May 29, guests are to bring tiki drinks and deck out in tropical wear, all in the poster’s honor. Is it weird to worship at the behest of a poster for a movie that itself had a lot of questionable allusions to mythical powers? This writer, who lives across the street from a bus ad that still features Blake Lively in Age of Adaline, a movie that beat Aloha to theaters by a month, gets the Logan Square regulars’ impulse. You see, there are people in posters. When you see those people in posters every day for an unimaginable length of time, the poster people become your friends, your guardians, your deities. You watch the poster people and the poster people watch you. It’s comforting. Still, the whole thing is more like Age of Ads-aline, am I right? My bud Blake gets it.

Update, May 6:  The Logan Square Aloha billboard met its end today. Instead of a celebration, the community is now holding a vigil in its honor on May 29. Aloha.


An Aloha Billboard Has Been Up for Over a Year