The Best - and Worst - Movie Trailers of the Week

The Best - and Worst - Movie Trailers of the Week

Feb 28, 2014

This time next month, hopefully Best and Worst Movie Trailers of the Week will be filled with turtle power. Producer Galen Walker just revealed that the very first teaser trailer for Jonathan Liebesman’s Ninja Turtles will hit theaters ahead of Captain America: The Winter Solider on April 4. We’ve still got at least a full month until the piece pops up online, but fortunately there are three excellent trailers currently making the rounds that you can catch right now.

The Best Stuff

1. The Sacrament

I was a bit disappointed when the first trailer for Ti West’s The Sacrament hit just minutes after submitting this column last week, but fortunately a green-band version has arrived and even though it’s missing a few gory details, it’s just as effective, which is a very good sign for the full feature. Clearly blood will flow but, as it should, a compelling narrative comes first.

2. Godzilla

When Godzilla attacks, he demolishes cities. That’s a given. So now the question is, can Gareth Edwards turn that scenario into something worth reliving? The first teaser showed off a stream of stunning visuals backed by a menacing tone, and now this full trailer ups the tension tenfold. Each and every new plot detail broadens the story, but also increases the threat of the unknown until, after just two minutes and 32 seconds, the promo has established an expansive world with an equally sizable creature capable of decimating it.

3. Muppets: Most Wanted

Now this is an innovative marketing campaign! The folks behind the Muppets: Most Wanted promotional push have covered the traditional trailer format, the Super Bowl spot, some playful self-deprecation and now they’re breaking down the fourth wall with a brand new trailer/music video. It’s catchy, clever and, most importantly, leaves you wanting more.

The Worst Stuff

1. Enemy

A unique style and tone is a great way to make a film stand out, but that fresh feeling still has to be appealing, too, and the one in the new NSFW teaser for Enemy most certainly is not. Not only does the piece fail to get a single plot point across, but the visuals aren’t striking enough, making this montage feel more like one big undefined blob rather than a structured sequence with a captivating build.

2. The Cold Lands

The first trailer for The Cold Lands isn’t a total loss, but it could have been far more effective. Of course you don’t want to give everything away in a promo, but had there been just the slightest bit more clarity to Lili Taylor’s situation, that reveal at the 50-second mark could have struck a major chord, letting you then plow through the rest of the material with a more tangible connection to the characters. 

3. The Protector 2

This one’s a sequel, so the original movie must have fans, but since when does a franchise grow by only marketing the new installment to the existing following? Not only does the trailer for The Protector 2 have a poorly integrated use of voiceover, not a single meaty story detail and a totally flat performance from RZA, but it also alienates newcomers by failing to explain why Kham is legendary, turning all of the action sequences into nothing more than meaningless, fleeting thrills.

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

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