The Art of the Movie Trailer and Why Most of Them Suck
As any avid watcher-of-the-movies will tell you, the art of the trailer is a delicate one. An art that is as fragile as it is crucial to the success and value of the film. One shudders to think about the romantic comedies that give away the entire plot of the movie (even though the targeted audience pretty much knows what will happen anyway).
Recently, however, there has been a trailer that was an anomaly among its peers: it actually gave away nothing while revealing everything. This was the trailer to Super 8. Rarely has there been an upcoming summer blockbuster that was able to maintain interest to such a masterful level as this. If people were to look back at the previews seen in theaters last summer for Super 8, all they would see were flashes of adorable witty kids and loud ominous tones (truly Spielbergian in that way). And that was all the trailer needed to make the hairs on the backs of audiences necks stand stick-straight up. That was a trailer.
The 5 most common mistakes in big studio movie trailers are extremely common and are as follows:
- Shows all the best jokes in the preview. As seen in any Will Ferrell movie.
- Literally showing the introduction, conflict, and resolution. You would think it would be hard in a 30 second-1 minute time frame but it has, sadly, been done over and over and over…
- Only shows explosions and close ups on models in repetition. Cough cough, Michael Bay.
- Those indie film trailers where there is just indie music and a bunch of non-sequester clips of random scenes. During the preview it’s intriguing but after it’s over it leaves people confused and often doesn’t do the film credit.
- THE WORST: Just lists the names of all the big actors and other film credits of the producers. I.e. “From the guys who brought you Old School and Anchorman and Talladega Nights and…” a.k.a. any Will Ferrell movie.
SnagFilms, Staff Blogger