Sure, I’m actually there to see the movie. And yes, it’s often pretty good too. But somehow I just can’t help but get excited when that first green ratings sign pops up on the screen. Perhaps it’s something to do with the often unintentionally hilarious ratings comments (“rated PG for non-stop frenetic animated action” and sometimes the dreaded “thematic elements”). Or perhaps it’s something to do with the innocent promise inherent in movie previews – you have no idea what the movie is actually going to be like yet, but darned if it doesn’t look like fun from a few minutes of clips.
So here a few of my own favorites – or at least the ones that, you know, I managed to remember after I left the theater. You’ll notice many of these clips employ “The Voice.” If you don’t know what I mean, well… you will.
Why spoof indirectly when you can go straight to the source?
There are no words. No. Words.
For another classic ’80s trailer, see this Entertainment Weekly post.
Pure film nostalgia at its best.
Blair Witch Project
Yes, yes, it’s seriously cliché now, but no matter what you think of the film, you can’t deny that this trailer worked really, really well. And hey, who says you can’t indulge in a little cliché now and then?
Back when trailers were nothing but a news headline parade of flashy movie star clips set to booming voice overs, Orson Welles went a different route. Not exactly the older brother of the 300 trailer, but it’s got witty humor, “caught off guard” celebrities, and (perhaps cleverly? or tongue-in-cheek… ily?), a focus on Welles’s most infamous asset: his voice over the microphone.
Because it’s just so much fun to watch. Talk about setting the mood…
The Omen (the original one)
Chicken Little (guilty pleasure)
Jarhead (I’ll admit, it’s mainly for the Kanye West song)
And finally, you have to include at least one fake trailer in one of these things. It’s an oldie (by web standards), but always a goodie – the classic: The Shining
More trailer goodies:
Golden Trailer Awards – Yes, they do exist.
The Holiday – Finally, movie trailer makers get their due! Cameron Diaz stars as a woman who has made a (ridiculously wealthy) living off of making movie previews, and hears her life in “trailer format” (i.e., with “The Voice”) at particularly stressful moments.
Perhaps I spend way too much time watching TV (ok, not perhaps, that’s definitely true), but I always get a kick out of those TBS movie previews. Here are some for The Lord of the Rings.