[On a formatting note: I've tried to both embed the trailers (where possible) and link to the trailers someplace where I know they won't be pulled. If there's no embed, blame YouTube. Just click the link on the movie's title and you'll get it.]
8. Watchmen (2009)
Naturally, it's the initial teaser trailer I'm ranking -- I've talked about it on the blog before, so I guess you could just read that, but to review: The blueprint for how to introduce an adaptation of a beloved known quantity to fans while giving newbies just a taste to get them curious. Many, many, many bonus points for use of the Smashing Pumpkins song (which was, to remind you, a rejiggered version of the song that appeared on the soundtrack to the geek-despised Batman and Robin), one of the ballsiest maneuvers in trailer-making I've seen.
Awesome trailer attributes: cool song/score; teaser; great tagline
13. Garden State (2004)
It was kind of a tossup between this, the teaser trailer, and the longer official trailer. I like both very much, and with the Frou Frou song in this clip and The Postal Service and Travis in the other, it was kind of a Sophie's Choice of hipster overload. The teaser works both because of the song ("Let Go" holds up on its own, but it was practically made for trailers) and because the series of striking images -- and Natalie Portman -- are enough to sell you without a word of dialogue. Or else ward you off, if your hateration is strong. But the Braff/hipster hatred didn't seem to surface until AFTER this movie, so I say the trailer succeeds.
Awesome trailer attributes: cool song/score; teaser
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