Monday, February 21, 2011

LowRes 2010 Movie Awards: The Trailers

The 2010 LowRes Movie Awards: 30 Amazing Moments / Best Trailers / Best Techs (Visual) / Best Techs (Audio) / Screenplays + Director / Breakthrough + Ensemble + Cameo / Supporting Actor + Actress / Lead Actor + Actress / Top 10 Films

I pretty much said it best last year: I'm kind of into movie trailers? Yes, well, I am. I'm not saying the Academy should have this category at the Oscars, I'm just putting the question to you all: would you rather see the five best trailers played on Oscar night or performances of the increasingly bullshit Best Song nominees? Right.

My favorite trailers this year -- as in most years -- were masterful at conveying the exact right mood. They're selling me a product, absolutely, but they're selling me on a feeling most of all.

Black Swan
Oh, the menace. Oh, the exquisitely dark menace. There's a build in this trailer, with Portman spinning faster and faster, inside and out, that left me pretty well crazed to see this movie RIGHT DAMN NOW. Early December never felt so far away.

Blue Valentine
Taking the most sweetly romantic scene and playing it out in full, then interspersing within it the jagged moments that swirl around it in the movie gave off the exact right note of past-and-present-at-once. This is a movie that, among other things, asks us to be wistful for the good times while they're happening, and the trailer captures that so well.

Because: duh. This trailer probably made more of an impression on the culture than 90% of the actual movies released. Is that a good thing, necessarily? Of course not. But the trailer itself most definitely is. 800 million bonus points for including the Tom Hardy/Joseph Gordon-Levitt tag at the end. Even the trailer can't deny their attraction.

Never Let Me Go
It probably gets a bit of a boost from its use of Marcelo Zarvos's score from The Door in the Floor, one of my favorite pieces of movie music from the last ten years. But I also love the way the trailer doles out information -- there's a lot of it, and not all of it gets disseminated here, but the focus never feels like it shifts away from the characters to some big question of plot. The pitch is all there on Carey Mulligan, Andrew Garfield, and Keira Knightley's faces.

The Social Network
Does the fact that I count a trailer among my favorites of the year when I didn't particularly enjoy the actual film mean I was successfully duped? On the one hand...I guess yes. The choral arrangement of Radiohead's "Creep" and the increasing urgency of the clips seemed to suggest a movie that has a sense of its own overblown self-importance and would comment on that in an interesting way. Instead, we got a movie that actually was overblown self-importance. Then again, this trailer seems to care more about the implications of Facebook and actual social networks way more than The Social Network does, so maybe I'm just getting the movie's best self for two minutes.


Anonymous said...

Black Swan for the win! (btw did you see the trailer for Dogtooth? it's a good one)

Joe Reid said...

I actually managed to see Dogtooth before even watching the trailer. Which is a rarity for me. I just went and watched it now and as a pure distillation of such a weird movie, I am in total agreement.

Walter L. Hollmann said...

oooh Black Swan or Social Network, especially since the latter was the first hint that this wanted to be more than just "the facebook movie".