The Best - and Worst - Movie Trailers of the Week

The Best - and Worst - Movie Trailers of the Week

Mar 07, 2014


The Best Stuff

1. 13 Sins

A high concept is a very powerful thing. The first trailer for 13 Sins doesn’t maximize the story’s potential, but the piece is still powerful enough to make you wonder how far would you go for money? Not only is it a thrill to consider how you might fare in such a situation, but you also walk away eager to find out how Mark Webber’s attempt at completing the challenge plays out. 


2. Oculus

The Oculus promotional campaign takes a major step forward, proving the feature’s got some serious layers in this first full trailer. Whereas the teaser presented the film as a somewhat familiar haunted-house-type thriller with a few innovative components, this new one takes the narrative to an unprecedented level by highlighting its fresher spin on the scenario.


3. The Boxtrolls

If you frequent this column, you’re well aware that I have a tendency to pick on promos that fail to deliver an adequate sense of the narrative, but exchanging plot points for world building is a completely different story. The latest trailer for The Boxtrolls doesn’t say much about the journey the characters are on, but it does show off a stunning and highly immersive world with wildly appealing main players, and that’s all that’s necessary to leave you eager for more.


The Worst Stuff

1. Stage Fright

The big challenge for a movie like Stage Fright is properly infusing the horror genre with a musical component, and unfortunately the SXSW selection’s first trailer doesn’t quite achieve that. The unique combination does still bear an inherent curiosity and appeal, but as presented here it doesn’t look like they’ll meld well enough to deliver a cohesive full feature.


2. Paddington

Perhaps this very first look at Paddington is riveting for those with a strong enough connection to the source material to rouse some nostalgia, but for anyone who missed out on the books as a kid, the teaser’s big reveal has little to no effect. (And that’s only if you get beyond all of the preceding material which looks more like a travel ad.)


3. Afflicted

This isn’t a bad trailer by any means. It’s exhilarating, unnerving and offers up a comprehensive sense of the story, but the problem is it’s too comprehensive. Having already seen and adored Afflicted, this piece brings back great memories of favorite scenes, but scenes that wouldn’t be half as effective had I known about them beforehand. This is a very well-cut piece, but it still would be unfortunate to spoil the full feature with a short-lived marketing thrill. Don’t watch the video below -- just catch Afflicted in full when it arrives on April 4, 2014.

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

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