Of course it’s a thrill to see Thor back in action, but for those who aren’t familiar with the source material and don’t know where the sequel plot stems from, more story details could have elevated Thor: The Dark World’s first trailer from banking on familiar faces to suggesting his next adventure is worth experiencing. However, the piece does offer loads of striking imagery and battle sequences, leaving both the top and bottom three positions up for grabs.
The Best Stuff
1. A Hijacking: Lucky for A Hijacking, the Tom Hanks-starrer Captain Phillips isn’t due in theaters until October 11. Not only will it give the film a little room to breathe after its June 14 limited release, but there’s also a chance the Captain Phillips trailer won’t sneak in and steal this one’s thunder. If what was screened at CinemaCon ends up being the official Captain Phillips trailer, it’s good, but this one for The Hijacking is nearly equally as effective, showing the takeover in a particularly brutal and authentic light, making it tough to forget.
2. The Great Gatsby: Really, this 60-second trailer for The Great Gatsby is more of the same, but the material plays especially well in the shorter format. As someone who’s had enough of being beaten over the head with the film’s famous cast, gorgeous visuals, and flashy soundtrack, this piece is far more digestible, getting the basics across to a catchy beat and stopping just short of overindulging, leaving you wanting more.
3. The Bling Ring: The Spring Breakers vibe is still there, and appropriately so, but the latest trailer for The Bling Ring helps set this tale of kids gone wrong far apart by offering up more details on their motive, crimes and punishment. It looks as though Sofia Coppola might have hit the ideal balance between reality and the heightened reality/absurdity of the behavior in this true story.
The Worst Stuff
1. Desperate Acts of Magic: First there was The Incredible Burt Wonderstone and now we’re expected to tolerate this? Desperate Acts of Magic has tacky comedy written all over it with its new trailer absolutely drowning in magic-related gags that fall pitifully flat. Based on this promo, the film is also lacking a hook. A guy trying to establish himself as a top magician by winning a contest? He’s no different than the rest of the characters competing. Also making this presentation of the narrative even less effective is the pointless use of text. The text frames are far too spread apart and wind up just demolishing the trailer’s pace rather than coming together to form some sort of message.
2. Man of Tai Chi: There are hints of an interesting scenario in the new trailer for the Keanu Reeves starrer Man of Tai Chi, but the concept doesn’t come together enough to suggest the film is worth seeing. The combat is vicious, raw and quite mesmerizing, but they’ve got to be fighting for something beyond transitioning from being a “good natured man of Tai Chi” to “killer” in order to make it more than a show of violence.
3. Much Ado About Nothing: If you need repeat readings in order to fully digest Shakespeare like me, you could be in big trouble with Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing. I got a preview of my inability to consume the language on the fly during the footage screened at CinemaCon and now the trailer highlights that inaccessibility for non-Shakespeare aficionados further. For someone who hasn’t touched Much Ado About Nothing since high school, it’s nearly impossible to connect names to faces after a single viewing of this trailer, let alone feel connected to the storyline.
What are your favorite and least favorite movie trailers this week?