By: Scott Yager
Hello everyone and welcome to the first edition of THE TRAILER PARK!!!! TTP is where I Scott Yager, The Campus Socialite’s resident movie guru, will donate the same amount of analysis, criticism and foresight towards movie TRAILERS that I would to a movie itself. I don’t know about you but for about 90% of the movies out there, the trailer ends up being the high point, as some trailers are so good that movies can never live up to them, and some movies are so bad that cutting it down and inserting a catchy pop song can go a long way to raising audience expectations to an unhealthy level.
The site I use to get my trailers as soon as they are released is www.apple.com/trailers. Trailers tend to show up there within a day of their official release, maybe making an appearance on the film’s official site for a day or two before going wide. YouTube and other sites also tend to have trailers as well, but apple.com/trailers provides a nice archive with each movie poster representing the trailer or trailers for that film, displayed in the order in which they have debuted on the site. For instance, you can go to the site and know that the films towards the top of the page are the newest to the net and most likely the ones you want to check out. Doing this a few times a week will keep you up to date with all the movies set to come out in the next year or so.
Here at THE TRAILER PARK I will go over the newly released trailers and dissect them to the best of my ability, assessing whether or not the film looks good, the trailer looks good and whether or not it will live up to the expectations that are created by the good or bad looking trailer that has been released. Without further ado…THE TRAILER PARK…
PS: I will grade the trailers in two ways’ the first being THE TRAILER GRADE, as in how enjoyable the trailer itself is and how good of a job it did on making the movie look good. The second is THE MOVIE GRADE, which is where I attempt to separate the trailer from the film itself and predict how good the MOVIE could possibly be without the added luxury of having a catchy song playing while they cut from best part to best part.
It’s Kind of a Funny Story – Starring Zach Galifianakis, Keir Gilchrist, and Emma Roberts
TRAILER GRADE: A
MOVIE GRADE: A
A kid decides to spend some time in a mental ward, getting to know the outlandish cast of characters (Zach G.) and learning to know himself along the way. Seems very Cuckoos Nest meets Garden State.
This trailer is very good and the movie looks very fun. It seems to be that perfect mix between outlandish comedy and indie that Galifianakis really belongs in. Sure, The Hangover was great but Zach’s type of humor might not be best suited for that OVER THE TOP comedy he has been cast in ever since. This has a much more indie feel to it, as is made clear by the music in the trailer and the way they open the whole thing. Gilchrist, who plays the younger guy, looks really good in this and looks like he’s playing the part of Zach Braff in Garden State or something. The movie could be just as good as the trailer because it has room for laughs but doesn’t seem like the type of movie that will shoot itself in the foot with it’s absurdity. Look out for this movie…I don’t know how wide of a release it is going to get but it could sneak up on some people.
Centurion – Starring Michael Fassbender and Dominic West
TRAILER GRADE: B+
MOVIE GRADE: B
We haven’t had a great war epic in a while and this looks like it could step in and be one to sneak up on us. With a relatively unknown cast (fans of The Wire will recognize West and fans of Inglorious Basterds will recognize Fassbender) and a relatively unknown director (Neil Marshall, who did The Decent) the movie has few selling points other than the trailer. Very well cut, the trailer uses standard tactics for getting a movie like this over in a short period of time, that is, show very small bits of pieces of the cooler sequences in between the more iconic lines of the film (from 300 see “This…is…Sparta! Or tonight…we dine in hell!). With Michael Fassbender becoming one of Hollywood’s newest go to guys it is hard to tell whether Centurion is just a throw away epic a la King Athur with Clive Owen or whether it is actually an epic that was put in his hands for good reason. Fassbender will also be playing Magneto in the new X-Men reboot. His track record, although relatively under the radar (Band of Brothers, 300, Basterds), has been very consistent from a script-choosing point of view. He received rave reviews for a little known film called Hunger in which he proved he could go to great lengths to sell a part. Centurion’s trailer makes it look visually stunning and epically pleasing, providing imagery and violence unlike most that we are used to in a genre that for a while, began to get very formulaic and predictable.
Like all films of this nature however, the trailer can be very misleading, especially when it is carried by breathtaking visuals and epic dialogue, most of which is screamed. Just recently the trailer for Valhalla Rising caused me make an effort to see it, something I regret very deeply. Trailers can make films, like Rising, look exciting when they literally put the ONLY eventful parts in the trailer and cut them together to make them look much more consequential than they actually are within the film. Simply put, if the content in between the action sequences and speeches is not good, the movie will not be able to survive on those few points alone, whereas a trailer, especially with the added guide of music and sound effects, can do just that. That being said, I am very stoked for this movie.
TRON: Legacy – Starring Jeff Bridges, Olivia Wilde, and Garrett Hedlund
TRAILER GRADE: B+
MOVIE GRADE: C
I know this is a rebooted franchise and the idea of EVERY SINGLE FRANCHISE deserving and getting a reboot has begun to bother me to the point where I sort of write these movies off right from the start, but the variety of trailers they have debuted for TRON: Legacy do look pretty good. Visually they look pretty cool, and they do lend us the courtesy of introducing the story to us IN the trailer rather than assuming we know the whole thing already. I think this movie might have some trouble finding an audience, being that the people who were in the demographic for the original are probably too old to appreciate this now, and the audience for a movie like this might be too old to realize the context of the original material. This happened with Where The Wild Things Are, Land of The Lost, and Prince of Persia.
The trailer itself is pretty good and does a good job of making this movie look like an event film worth seeing. The visuals take place in this sort of “out of this world” space stadium type of setting that we have seen dozens of times already. This doesn’t really put me in a “I NEED TO SEE THIS IN THE IMAX” or 3D or whatever mode. I will say that the trailer got me more intrigued for this film that I ever thought I would be, and for that I give it a B+, but my predictions for the film itself do not really change. I see TRON as being a disappointment from a box office point of view and I think it will be the latest in a string of rebooted franchises to suffer from that lack of TRUE demographic seeing as the movie itself is a little too young for it’s core audience and it’s ORIGINAL core audience might be a little old to go see it just for nostalgic purposes.