Wow. I just spent the last 30 minutes watching movie trailers and I am blown away by how amazing they all are. Even less interesting movies have incredible trailers, due to their use of the more interesting or more funny clips from the overall poor movie. Of the 8 trailers that I watched, I noticed certain similarities between movie trailers of similar genres.
For the more action-packed trailers, such as the trailers for Iron Man 3 and Serenity, shots were short and pacing was fast. This was to display the excitement of the films, because both films are of the action genre. For the slower films, such as Atonement and Les Miserables, shots were longer and more story was illustrated. This is because, although action films still require a story, it is more or less secondary to exciting explosions and fighting.
Music lends an important hand to films as well as trailers, and those that I watched were no different. For films that are musicals, music is obviously very important, and a very famous song “I Dreamed A Dream” is played in the background of the Les Miserables trailer as scenes from the film are shown. This is an obvious example of how music assists film. However, even in films that aren’t necessarily focused on music, music is instrumental (get it?). In the trailer for The Hobbit, the latter half has a song sang by some of the characters, “Misty Mountain (Cold).” The song is incredibly dramatic, slow, and beautifully performed, and builds the trailer to an incredible climax where a full orchestra crescendos and the mountains of Middle Earth (also known as New Zealand) are shown.
Les Miserables had a trailer with length of just 1:30, while Cloud Atlas had a length of 5:42. These two films vary very much, as Les Miserables is a very well known musical theater performance, and Cloud Atlas is a film based on a less famous novel. Cloud Atlas, then, required more depth and introduction as to why one should see the film, and Les Miserables is more obvious in its presentation. Narration styles varied, but not much, as only the trailer for Stranger than Fiction had any narration.
As far as recut trailers go, the three that I watched were made well. Audio synchronization assisted in creating a dramatic atmosphere in the Mrs. Doubtfire recut trailer, including a scene where Mrs. Doubtfire (Robin Williams) reminds the children that she is in charge, showing their faces of worry. In The Shining recut, there was heavy reliance on a narrator who made the horror movie sound more like a feel-good family film. All in all, the three trailers I viewed were incredibly engaging and felt like definite possibilities for feature films.
Recut Trailers: The Shining recut (horror film converted to family film), Mrs. Doubtfire (family comedy converted to horror), Ferris Bueller’s Day Off recut (comedy converted to indie coming-of-age)