It all began with 50/50, The Muppets, The Hangover Part II and Bridesmaids nearly two years ago. Since then, I’ve had the pleasure of plowing through countless trailers of quality and ones with none at all so you don’t have to, and it’s been an absolute honor and pleasure. Check out the lot that earned the honor and dishonor of being part of the 100th installment of Best and Worst Movie Trailers of the Week below. Here’s to many more weeks of amusingly abysmal and exemplary trailer debuts!
The Best Stuff
1. White House Down
The White House Down marketing team played it smart by kicking off its run with an effective and rather chilling teaser that banked on the disaster-movie appeal because it essentially rolled out the red carpet for a more character-driven promo. The teaser showed what’s coming and let you feel the threat, and now the first full trailer builds upon that, showing you who’s involved and offering a general sense of what they’re up against. Should trailer two further highlight the precise threat, the marketing campaign could create quite the build ahead of the film’s June 28 release.
2. Violet & Daisy
Alexis Bledel and Saoirse Ronan can command a scene and the new trailer for Violet & Daisy proves it. It’s a little light on story, the details of their mission not quite coming across, but watching the duo trounce around stalking their prey is still magnetizing, firmly locking you in before the curious tone and visuals take hold and make you eager for more.
3. Pacific Rim
It may be without a big screen and the Dolby Atmos sound system, but the trailer for Pacific Rim still plays fantastically outside of CinemaCon. This is easily the most well composed video of the bunch, literally introducing you to Jaeger combat step by step. Once this exhilarating new way of fighting has you hooked, a voiceover and Charlie Day’s Dr. Newton Geiszler gives the battle technique context, making the combat more powerful via purpose. Plus there’s just no way a trailer with such a head-smashing conclusion wouldn’t crack the top three.
The Worst Stuff
1. Girl Most Likely
This isn’t a bad trailer, but with Kristen Wiig in the spotlight you expect more. It’s fun seeing the famous faces pour in, but as far as the material goes this piece is only scratching the surface and you can feel it. Of course there’s no need to spoil an entire narrative in a promo, but if all we’re getting is the fun of seeing famous faces and some mildly amusing scenarios, an endearing story hook could have come in handy to round out the trailer with a little heart.
2. Mr. Pip
The new trailer for Mr. Pip certainly packs a powerful build and does leave you with a degree of curiosity, but for those who are unfamiliar with Lloyd Jones’ book, the trailer presents the tale as though it’s three completely different things. First it’s an underdog teacher tale and then it takes on a fairy-tale-like quality before exploding with moments that are so stirring, the first portion of the trailer is nearly forgotten. It’s not a successful promo as a whole, but it still manages to leave the full film in an alluring place.
3. Pacific Rim
The Japanese Pacific Rim trailer sinks in the wake of the one shown at CinemaCon. Guillermo del Toro’s introduction is actually better than most, but by noting that the footage assembled was selected specifically for a Japanese audience and highlighting the two Japanese actresses cast in the film, you expect a trailer that puts them in the spotlight, too. Perhaps the material just isn’t in the full feature, but regardless, this promo has almost no story, just a small handful of shots of the aforementioned actresses in a sloppily assembled montage.
What are your favorite and least favorite movie trailers this week?