In need of a good laugh? Go back and watch that Gary Busey blooper reel, then maybe watch this new “The Making of Piranha 3DD” from Funny or Die. It’s not that the gag isn’t funny; it just isn’t as funny as Busey making a fool of himself. Also offering up an amusing show is this set tour for Moonrise Kingdom. Technically it’s Bill Murray himself giving you the tour, but it definitely feels like he’s still in character to a degree and the construction of the video basically mimics the tone and comedy of the full feature.
Then, of course, we’ve got the first trailer for The Great Gatsby. What does it say about my education that I never came across a class that required me to read the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel? Anyway, whether you’re into the source material or not, there’s no denying that Baz Luhrmann has a visually magnificent piece of work here. On the other hand, while the action still looks cool in the new red band trailer for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, the film’s promotional campaign has yet to deliver any material that suggests the story’s got depth and the power to make an honest connection.
Speaking of making a connection, while Snow White and the Huntsman makes an honorable attempt at stepping outside the box by trying to make watching a trailer an interactive experience, watching a trailer isn’t really meant to be an element of multitasking.
The Best Stuff
1. Savages TV Spot: When you’ve only got 30 seconds to work with, you can’t waste a single one of them. There’s no room for conversation in a TV spot; it’s all about catching the best one-liners, the most vivid imagery, and anything and everything that could possibly lure a moviegoer in nearly instantaneously and this first spot for Oliver Stone’s Savages is just that. A simple voice over sets the scene, concise dialogue names the stakes and then we get explosive imagery proving how serious the situation really is. Follow that up with a star-powered role call, a booming soundtrack and a catchy grand finale and you’ve got an unforgettable TV spot.
2. Safety Not Guaranteed Clip: After having seen the full feature, Safety Not Guaranteed gets the promo piece thumbs up for excellent scene selection. This is easily one of the film’s tensest and most amusing moments, and while that comes across in this tiny snippet, it also won’t spoil the moment when viewed in context. No, it doesn’t say much about what makes Safety Not Guaranteed so intriguing – the time travel angle – but it does beg the question, what is Mark Duplass doing and that, in turn, leaves a viewer eager to learn more about the feature.
3. The Dark Knight Rises Banner: Quite a few new posters for The Dark Knight Rises have hit the web in the past week, and while all feature great designs, there’s one in particular that is downright stunning. Amidst a quartet of banners comes an image of the standoff between Batman and Bane. Not only does the shot provide a sense of the expanse and intensity of the predicament, but lays out something that’s at the heart of the film – Batman vs. Bane. On the other hand, while visually appealing, the poster of Catwoman on her motorcycle is merely showing off a toy while the ones of Batman and the cops and Bane and his thugs give us a taste of the gravity of the situation, but without the conflict. This however, is the complete package:
The Worst Stuff
1. Skyfall Teaser Trailer: Call me crazy, but I’ve never really been into the James Bond franchise. However, that somewhat works in Skyfall’s favor because I don’t have high expectations. Then again, when a teaser trailer still can’t appease with the bar set low, that’s not a good sign. The interrogation back and forth doesn’t have the build intended, so when you roll into the booming background music and more intense imagery, they wind up having a subpar impact as well. But even worse, even with guns going off, trains crashing and people plummeting off buildings, there’s nothing special about this, nothing to latch onto, nothing that makes a franchise diehard curious about what’s to come.
2. Anchorman: The Legend Continues Teaser Trailer: The Anchorman franchise, however, is something I can certainly get behind. It’s one of those movies that when talk of a sequel arises, you’re only response is, “Why not?” While I don’t think this teaser trailer is a negative answer to that question, I do think it’s a sorely missed opportunity. Sometimes the problem with teaser trailers is that they’re too short; you want more not because you’re intrigued, but because you literally didn’t get enough. However, in this case, less could have been more – especially considering the dialogue here isn’t all that funny. All we really needed was to see the guys back together again and then just leave it to Ron Burgundy to spit out one memorable little line to hold us over until the full trailer. Then again, I’d like to bet there’s a killer blooper reel that came out of making this one. Perhaps they should have just gone with that.
3. The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 Posters: Whether you’re into The Twilight Saga or not, there’s no denying that there’s a stigma surrounding the whole franchise. But, based on these new character posters, the marketing team has absolutely no intention of clearing that up. Are these even new shots of our favorite love triangle? If you lined up all the character posters for the Twilight films, you’d think they’re all just the same situations over and over again. The funny thing is, even the subtlest difference from film to film, as far as poster designs go, could have made an incredible impact. And no, Photoshopping Bella’s eyes red doesn’t count. I’m talking facial expression, real emotion. If you’re hoping the last installment of the Saga might be good enough to send the series out with a bang, based on these designs, you better lower your expectations and be ready for more of the same.