Monday, February 6, 2012

A Reel Opinion: Super Bowl Movie Trailers & Ads; The Good, The Bad, and The Glorious

With squillions of eyeballs watching the Super Bowl, movie studios and advertisers know that they have a golden opportunity to sell their products. For the studios, it is a chance to premiere new footage for their upcoming releases and gain some momentum going into the blockbuster season. For advertisers, it is a chance to dip into the movies to capitalize on some nostalgia for those smart enough to pay attention. So how did everyone do?


-Fans have been waiting decades for a FERRIS BUELLER sequel, but they’ve also been fearful of a CRYSTAL SKULL-like fiasco. Which is why they have to be very pleased and satisfied with Matthew Broderick’s semi-return to the character in Honda’s ad. Playing himself, Broderick and Honda squeeze in a dozen (so they claim) references to the original film and the results are charming. If only they could have dusted off Alan Ruck and Mia Sara…

-Darth Vader makes his first of two Super Bowl appearances in Volkswagen’s ad, which was a followup to their previous STAR WARS themed spots. VW recreates the iconic Mos Eisley Cantina in a fun and nostalgic manner. The appeal of STAR WARS still seems to be strong; the ad picked up millions of online hits before its official airing.

-Like it or not, STAR WARS EPISODE I is on its way back to the big screen in (goddamn) 3D. And love it or hate it, you have to admit those guys at Lucasfilm/Fox know how to cut a good trailer. Serving as a promo for all six films and the EPISODE I release, it starts off with Vader’s iconic breathing sound-effect, which is enough to get anyone to drop what they are doing and pay attention.


-Early trailers and teasers for Peter Berg’s BATTLESHIP and Disney’s JOHN CARTER have thus far generated a lot of negative buzz. Unfortunately for both parties, their Super Bowl trailers don’t seem to help matters much. Both films are coming off as CGI overload with lots and lots of loud noises. Granted, the studios need to put asses in the seats and have nothing to gain by putting together a boring trailer; both ads may have worked for younger crowds. But for us old farts who know better, give us something to hang our hats on.

-You get negative points for not bothering to show up. There were noticeable absences by major upcoming films such as THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, Ridley Scott’s PROMETHEUS, Disney/Pixar’s BRAVE, and Tim Burton’s DARK SHADOWS. Where were they?


-Marketing for Joss Whedon’s superhero teamup film THE AVENGERS has been in low gear up until the Super Bowl, where the curtain was finally pulled back. The trailer offered some new footage and was tightly held together by Sam Jackson’s I-dare-you-to-mess-with-me voiceover. The highlight of the trailer had to be the first and long-awaited “family photo” of all the heroes; the 360-panaround of Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Hulk, Hawkeye, and Black Widow is the shot that people have been waiting decades for.

-The ad that everyone is justly talking about is Chrysler’s can-do-attitude spot powered by the star of Clint Eastwood. It is a rally-cry, a tribute, and an emotional powerhouse that only Eastwood could have pulled off. Eastwood is filmed in the shadows for most of the spot, but when he finally comes into the light, he glares into the camera while his delivery dares you to defy him. This is the type of spot that everyone should watch on every Monday (and Tuesday) morning before going to work. Now that is an ad.

What say you?

No comments:

Post a Comment

A few rules:
1. Personal attacks not tolerated.
2. Haters welcome, if you can justify it.
3. Swearing is goddamn OK.