Saturday, May 9, 2009

Sweeping Music Is Really Hard to Resist

Last weekend, during some bonding time, my sister and I got to discussing some of the movie trailers airing on tv at the moment. Now, I realize that the whole point of trailers--and I guess marketing in general--is to manipulate the audience into wanting to see the movie. But there are a couple that so blatantly do it that I can feel myself being manipulated into considering a movie that I know I don't want to see.

Like, say, The Soloist. I know that I do not want to see this movie. I cannot watch Jamie Foxx (I'm not sure what it is, exactly, but I just don't like him). The story looks predictable and saccharine. I know, I know, it's a true story, and I'm sure the true story is remarkable & uplifting, but the movie looks like its entire point is to play on the heartstrings rather than have any substance. But.

I do love Robert Downey, Jr. And there's something about the song that they play during the trailer that every time makes me think, "Oh, well, maybe I should go see that." And the one line they keep showing about having passion. But I'm staying strong.

The other one is the trailer for the dvd release of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. I did see this in the theater. And while it's a nice love story, that's all it is, and I was disappointed and wish I could have those three hours and $12 back. I certainly do not need to spend another 3 hours watching it again. But that trailer! The sweeping music! The beautiful shots of cinematic love! Argh!

I know that there are lots of people who like, if not love, both of these movies. But I'm just not one of them, and so feeling like the trailers are trying to get not only those who will like the movie, but also those who won't but can be falsely convinced they might feels icky to me.

On the other hand, one trailer that I think may be pretty brilliant is the one for the new Star Trek movie. I have never, ever in my life wanted to see a Star Trek movie. I have never watched the tv show. I know who Kirk and Spock and Picard and Scottie are because, frankly, who doesn't, but that's about all I really know. Yet, every time I see that trailer, I think "Wow, what movie is that? It looks pretty incredible." And every time I'm surprised that it's Star Trek. What makes this one different than the other two for me is that it doesn't seem to be misrepresenting itself just to get viewers. It seems to be distilled into what it really is, but appealing to people like me, who wouldn't normally pay any attention at all to a new Star Trek movie, as well as to its actual fanbase. I also always like "beginnings" stories, so that's a part of the appeal for me. Maybe if I see it I'll end up having an entirely different take, but right now...I kinda want to go spend my $12.

I mean, come on, check this out.


  1. I just saw the Star Trek movie last night.

    It is BRILLIANT.

    I do not like Star Trek. I've seen a few episodes, but certainly less than 10 (probably less than 5) and certainly none of them really stood out to me.

    But I LOVED this movie. It was very clever, I had no trouble following the plot, and I thought the characters were engaging and well drawn out. Actually, as soon as it was over, I started looking up when the sequel would come out!

  2. Go. See it. It's just like everything good in the trailer, but even better as a whole :)

  3. Star Trek is just as good as everyone's saying...true to all the good things about the 60's show, but still fresh.
    ALSO, the trailer I had big problems (of the swelling music/uncontrollable, Pavlovian tearing up variety) with was "Pursuit of Happyness" a few years ago. Good god. Every damn time I saw the trailer!

  4. Star Trek was surprisingly good. I'd never seen a single episode of any of the shows, but I really liked the movie.