Not long ago we listed ten movie trailers that are much more fun to watch then the movie. Turns out there were more that couldn’t made the list. Lots more. Here’s ten of them.
When this came out we’d just finished watching Jurassic Park in the cinema for the twelfth time and our appetite for monster movies had been wetted for the time in decades. The advent of new CGI had us clamoring to see what it could do next. Then this trailer came out it promised everything that we wanted bundled up in an old school adventure flick. Plus it had Bruce Campbell AND Ernie Hudson! How COULD it fail.
Spectacularly as it turned out.
Looking back it’s hard to imagine why anyone could’ve been hyped up about seeing Pearl Harbour. You have to remember that when the trailer came out it didn’t have the horrible reputation it has today. What it had was reports that they’d dug out all the old biplanes and got them functional again. It had the by Titanic waiting to be filled. We had that long tracking shot of the bomb.
What it also had was a WWII fighter pilot shouting “I’m on yo ass”.
Wild Wild West
Even looking back at this trailer the movie looks like it’s fun by the bucket. Will Smith had just come of the back off Independence Day and Men in Black and was the biggest star of the day. This steampunk western mash-up looked like the perfect vehicle for the guy, plus it had Kevin Kline (who was someone at the time) would be a great comic foil for him. What made the trailer so much better than the movie was pacing. The final film was paced like a snail with racist tourettes. If it was cut more like the trailer it might’ve worked.
Long before this movie was enough greenlit I would listen to people waxing lyrical about how great it would be if Terminator 4 took place during the robot war. I haughtily told them that they were wrong because the series was, at heart, a series of chase films. Trying to jam it into the war genre would destroy the premise and take away what it is that makes the Terminator terrifying. When this trailer launched I was ready to tuck in my napkin and eat my own words. The action looked awesome and it was going to examine the gray area between AI and being human.
Nope. Turns out I was right and I will never doubt myself again.
So Zack Snyder is working from his own material huh? Let’s see what he has. Certainly very stylish. Should be good, as long as there’s good character and story to give it weight. It’ll have good character and story, right?
The Matrix Reloaded
This one didn’t wind up disappointing viewers based on the strength of the trailer – producer Joel Silver has to take some credit. “We’ve set the bar so high that…there isn’t a bar any more” he foolishly boasted in interviews, and damn it we wanted to believe him. The trailer does showcase some remarkable fight choreography and special effects – some still look impressive almost ten years later – it’s just a shame it’s all the movie had to offer.
The mythology of Superman represents a lot of things, and the original Richard Donner movie is held dear by so many because it so successfully brought them to life. Nobility, strength and pure, simply goodness are all values that Big Blue embodies, and this is a perfect 90 second package showcasing all that. They should’ve left it at 90 seconds.
The big, very obvious problem here is that they promoted the movie as an action blockbuster. It wasn’t (it should’ve been, but that’s a different issue), it was some mishandled psychological art film and promoting it as a genre largely enjoyed by the exact opposite of the people who watch psychological art films is a huge mistake. They showed Hulk swinging a tank around by a turent, which was the best part in the animated series, which just made it more disappointing.
The Mummy and its sequels never quite worked for me – the stupid far outweighed the entertaining. Everyone else seemed to love them and when the director’s follow up, a fantasy mash-up of Universal’s most famous monsters with Hugh Jackman fighting them with gadgets and a large hat, it sparked plenty of interest. Even nay-sayers could find something to enjoy in the trailer, looking like a fantasy horror version on James Bond. Turned out to be a contender for the decade’s best camp classic if only it was more entertaining.
Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
FUCKYOUFUCKYOUFUCKYOU sorry, sorry…I did promise that I’d stop ragging on the prequels. My last rant on this particular pile of crap is found here.