The Best - and Worst - Movie Trailers of the Week

The Best - and Worst - Movie Trailers of the Week

Feb 21, 2014

There was once talk of Frankie & Alice being Halle Berry’s ticket to another Academy Award nomination, but when that opportunity came and went, so did the film. It was locked for a February 2011 release, but that never happened, and it never made its way to DVD either. However, three years later, Codeblack is giving it another shot, awarding it an April 2014 release and a new trailer to go along with it. It’s clear that Berry gave this one her all, but as presented in this promo, it also seems as though a number of other clumsy elements could drag her down just as they dragged this trailer too far down to claim a Best Stuff spot.  

The Best Stuff

1. Guardians of the Galaxy

The Guardians of the Galaxy trailer has finally arrived and it was well worth the wait. After all this talk, it was bound to be a thrill to see Star-Lord and co. in action for the very first time no matter what, but director James Gunn went above and beyond with this one, delivering a promo in which every single frame is loaded with depth, detail and striking colors.

Further immersing you in this bizarrely beautiful world is Gunn’s handle on the much-talked-about tone. Guardians does seem to have that high-flying, combat-heavy quality you’d expect from any Marvel movie, but the standout component here is undoubtedly that infectious levity. To top it all off, this is also just a very well-structured trailer, one that effortlessly introduces viewers to the main players before launching into an exhilarating action montage that still manages to uphold that sass and charm. August 1, 2014 really can’t come soon enough.


2. Mistaken for Strangers

Admittedly, I’m a rather tough sell when it comes to documentaries and don’t have much interest in the National, but the new trailer for Mistaken for Strangers has me eager for more of both. The film is about frontman Matt Berninger’s brother Tom, who’s busy trying to make a documentary about his experience working as a roadie for the band. Tom is a total slacker and can’t quite do his job right, but that serves him well in this promo because his goofy innocence paired with Matt’s more poised and professional persona makes for a particularly engaging case of sibling rivalry.


3. The Double

The promotional push for Richard Ayoade’s The Double has been solid thus far, riding on what looks to be particularly strong work from Jesse Eisenberg and a curious style and tone, but it’s this latest international trailer that functions as an especially effective hook thanks to the addition of some fascinatingly peculiar new story details.  

The Worst Stuff


1. Jinn

The new trailer for Jinn seemed as though it was on the right track, kicking things off by offering up clear-cut context, but all sensible storytelling stops there, primarily due to the confusion that comes with having dialogue from one scene play over the visuals of another, making it difficult to figure out who’s at risk and impossible to know why.


2. Locke

Tom Hardy is always a pleasure to look at, but that doesn’t mean you can have him sit in a car and expect him to sell a movie all on his own. Clearly that is the point of Steven Knight’s Locke, considering the entire film consists of Hardy’s character in his car making phone calls. Sure, you can get away with such a scenario in a full-length feature during which you’ve got time to build the scenario and the character, but in a 90-second promo it’s got to be one well-defined plot point after the next. Sadly, the details here are just too vague to leave much of an impression.


3. 22 Jump Street

This one isn’t a bad trailer per se, but it still doesn’t prove we needed a 21 Jump Street sequel. It’s now been two months since 22 Jump Street’s first trailer hit; it’s about time the marketing campaign switched gears and started selling the film using a story worth telling rather than leaning on Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum’s appeal, particularly because as this piece proves, there’s just so far that can take them. 

What are your favorite and least favorite movie trailers this week?

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