Long Nights with Movie Trailers
In his book of comedy, “Seinlanguage”, Jerry Seinfeld mused about the joy of driving to the movie theater. He said that the excitement of what the movie could be exceeded the movie itself. I don’t exactly remember how this concept fit into his routine, but I do recall that idea hitting home with me personally. Especially when I’m on the way to one of those films I’ve been anxiously awaiting for months, the prelude to the moment of consummation is definitely superior, most of the time.
With movies though, there’s one extra forum for anticipation, the trailer. Call it a cruel joke or a slice of heaven. To me, there’s nothing better than those few minutes of bliss. At that point, it’s a clean slate. Anything can happen. Minus whatever you might have heard or read on the internet, these few scenes could be your only connection before it hits theaters.
Of course in most cases, the product never lives up to the previews. What you see are the best jokes or even worse, scenes with information key to the story’s plot that you probably wouldn’t have wanted to know beforehand. One director, Robert Zemeckis, actually encourages providing crucial plot details in trailers because he believes that people want to know the whole story beforehand or they won’t pay to see it. Bob, I love your movies but come on. Why do you do this to me?
Sometimes, it’s the opposite though and a positive bond is built. What about when it’s just that first time you see anything from the film you’ve been waiting for and those thirty seconds of highlights are a total surprise? What about when the first trailer appears a year before the film’s release and you’re left exploding with the prospects of the future? I’ve left some previews with such a case of the chills that I missed the first few minutes of the main attraction.
It definitely is a high point of the moviegoing experience for me. If only it didn’t turn out to be more rewarding than the film after it so many times.
(Thanks to Walsh for providing the photo.)
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