A few weeks ago this site got a bit of a redesign as part of SE's move towards a responsive design, as detailed in this announcement. This also went live for everyone on December 7th. Now the reception of that redesign here was, like on many places around SE, less than positive.
However, SE is willing to work with the communities on improving some of their first ideas to some degree, as explained in this related question. In order for this, we ought to start a discussion about specific aspects of the design and as the most prominent part, as well as one of the most contentious and dissatisfactory, I'd first like to concentrate on the site banner here, as it's also the primary identifying element of our site design (containing, at least before the responsive change, our beloved movie scene images) and deserves the best treatment we're able to get out of SE.
So what have we got so far
The first iteration of the site banner we got was a plain banner in our signature orange-red colour with the logo on the left and a miniature version of the film strip on the right (anchored on the right content boundary, i.e. above the right sidebar):
This wasn't received too well and shortly before the responsive design went live, SE reworked it entirely into the (as of now) current version with the logo put between the images of a full-sized film strip in their old red-tinted colour palette (which also made the whole banner quite a bit darker).
The logo is still anchored to the left content boundary, while the film strip is anchored to the left window boundary. Thus it scrolls through under the logo when resizing the window.
Let's see if we can do better
Since the current iteration still doesn't seem all that satisfying for various reasons, I'd like to encourage some discussion to help guide the designers to something that might be a compromise SE as well as many of our site's users might be able to live with. So, feel free to discuss the top banner and what you think it does good, what you think it does bad, and maybe how it could be improved.
However, be sure to contentrate on the why. Try to explain why aspects of the banner seem problematic to you (or why they're awesome) rather than just saying "it's all crap". You don't need to have an alternative solution ready, we're not designers here anyway, as long as you can provide guidance for the designers as to why something doesn't work for you. And if you have an alternative ready that you think would be awesome, try to explain why and what it does better. We're not downright providing our own design here rather than trying to guide the SE design team to a solution. Of course if you love the current iteration, feel free to say so too, but explain why and what it does better than the original site design.
The top banner does have some limitations, though. First of all, it's of course fixed in size across all of SE. It also has to contain the site logo in the left part (relative to the content area), i.e. right above the left sidebar. The rest of the banner can be an image that can be anchored differently (and thus "move" upon window resize) to the logo, but it's a little unclear if it has to. A major motivation for this whole responsive design movement is also that the design adapts to changing window sizes (and should work on desktop and mobile). While it might not be worth the effort to optimize the design for all possible view configurations, that's still something to bear in mind.