Movie trailers are one of my most guiltiest of pleasures. I live for them. At times they are the best part of my visit to the theater. The goal of a good trailer should be to make you want to see the film, but a great trailer can do far more than that. The following list presents what I think are the absolute best trailers of the last 15 years.
10. Iron Man
Trailer: The trailer kicks off our epic adventure into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Most importantly, the trailer presents us with Tony Stark as he truly is: arrogant, rich, and brilliant. The music wraps up the presentation with perfection. Why wouldn’t you play ACDCs Iron Man in the freaking Iron Man trailer?
Film: Great kick off on this adventure we are still enjoying. I’m still not sure who should be more grateful, us for having RDJ play this role, or RDJ for changing his entire career with this gig. I could write an entire blog on how different this world would be without him as Stark.
9. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, parts 1 and 2
Trailer: The feels, all of the feels. Most fans already knew how the story would end, but that didn’t mean we weren’t jazzed up to see it on the big screen. A majority of the footage was from the second part. While I didn’t dislike Part 1, RIP Dobby, it felt more like some weird wizard tribute to The Fellowship of the Ring. Stop me if you’ve heard this joke before: Ron, Hermione, and Harry are walking through the forest…… for hours. The power of the trailer is that it CAN give away what happens, there really are no secrets; it takes itself very seriously because, well, this is serious epic wizard battle shit.
Films: Good and Great, just ignore the epilogue
8. The Avengers: Age of Ultron
Trailer: Like you haven’t watched it 100 times??? Oh, I know I’m not alone. Since we haven’t seen the film yet, it’s hard to judge how much of the story is revealed by the trailer. We however, get plenty of teases. The voice of Ultron channeling Pinocchio adds the extra level of wow that gets this gem onto the list. Oh yeah, ummmmm Hulkbuster!!
7. Star Trek (2009)
Trailer: Retro Star Trek music? Check. USS Enterprise? Check. Kirk, Spock, Sulu, Bones, Chekov, Uhura, Scotty ? Check. Lens Flares? Check. This trailer alone breathed new life into this rich yet depressed universe. Seeing this trailer again actually made me stop the movie I was watching to watch this. Good job!
Film: Excellent. This film was a non-stop ride. Sure, there are some issues, but it was a well made movie that brought this franchise back from the land of the dead. Abrams did an amazing job refreshing this, so I feel confident with Star Wars in his hands. Speaking of Star Wars….
6. Star Wars Episode 1/3
Trailers: We are throwing out the trailer for 2 for about 1000 different reasons. These two a special in their own right. The trailer for Episode 1 was an event. We hadn’t had a single new Star Wars thing in 16 years. Most of us went to the cinema to see whatever this trailer was attached too, you know, viral meant an actual cold back in 1998. Lucas’ trailers always seemed to want to outline the entire film instead of just tease us, that worked for both of these. Episode 3 was a flurry of quick cuts, condensing the film down into a two minute power shot. It gave us what we wanted: Vader.
Films: We won’t talk about Episode 1, however, Episode 3 is my favorite. Angry, gritty, and sad.
5. X-men: Days of Future Past
Trailer: I will admit that I have a huge soft spot for the X-men. Many people feel the films were subpar, I enjoyed them. This trailer though, sells you on the ability for these two worlds to come together. Seeing all the stars (even Rogue who didn’t make the cut), as well as the tone of finality, really makes you wonder what will happen. I loved this trailer, but had to manage my expectations for the film.
Film: This was the best of the X-men series. It was so good that we were apparently able to overlook major issues, like WTF? Professor X is alive?? Wolverine’s claws are metal again? Beast is like Hulk now? Whatever, its a great thriller, which we all knew the outcome to. Great casting and great performances take it to an even higher level. Can a “comic book” movie really be this deep?
4. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy
Trailer: I am speaking specifically of the original trailer for all three films. I remember seeing it, and being in complete awe. No one had really done anything on this scale before. Peter Jackson’s work was inspiring, brave, and innovative. Setting up the trailer for all three, with the release dates, gave us all such anticipation.
Films: I could write a novel, instead, I’ll quote Gollum “My preciousssssssss.”
3. The Dark Knight
Trailer: Sure, the Dark Knight Rises was a great trailer too, the National Anthem being preformed with Bane and explosions in the background, but you know what it doesn’t have??? The Joker. The trailer perfectly encompasses this film.
Film: Flawless Victory!
2. Guardians of the Galaxy
Trailer: The music. The music makes this trailer and makes the film. This trailer edits a scene from the film, but introduces us to our ragtag group of heroes. Boom. Here ya go, we got all the back story we need in 30 seconds. Any worries the world had about the ability to pull this film off were squashed.
Film: Do you like Pina Coladas? NO?? You better freaking like Guardians! I still can’t figure out who my favorite character is. This is how you make a big budget, Hollywood, explosion, superhero film with HEART, yeah I’m looking at you Michael Bay.
1. Man of Steel
Trailer: This trailer is, for me, the standard for which all others should be judged. Its perfection. Perfect music, perfect scene selection, perfect voice over, perfect iconography. I was so excited to see this film based on the trailer, which come on, who wouldn’t be? The trailer does the best job of telling you what this film will be.
Film: God help you DC. I don’t know what went wrong. There were good parts, and I love Henry Cavill as Superman, what I don’t love, bad storytelling. I will reserve final judgement on this film once I see where the series is going, but honestly, do we need a origin story on Superman? If you didn’t see this, and do want to see the up coming DC catch up game, watch the trailer like 3 times. It will tell you everything you need.
Trailer: Every single one of us was like “WTF?” Inception hornnnnnnnnn!
Film: I still don’t know.
Trailer: Bad ass
Film: Wish it would have been better.
The Force Awakens
Trailer: kldsaogeiawohgraigfanjfkjgjlkajgkdsalfjeia Falcon!!!f alfkjdsajfdoajfeio
Film: how many more days???