My Filmviews

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The Monday Question: Misleading!

One of the most effective ways to get people interested in seeing a specific movie is the trailer. It’s the commercial in which you show the most exciting/funny or scary parts in the hopes people will pay money to see your movie. It’s a commercial and the marketing will show you whatever which will get you in the cinema seats. This results in something which will mislead or even spoil a movie. For me it’s a reason to not watch any trailers anymore, but once in a while I check them out after I’ve seen a movie out of curiosity. This week’s question:

Which trailers do you think were misleading?

The first one I immediately can think of is that for The Grey. It sells the movie as an action packed movie where Liam Neeson fights with wolves. If you actually saw the movie you realise it’s not action packed at all and that there really isn’t that much fighting either.

Recently I watched Cosmopolis, for which my review will appear later this week, and after seeing it I really wondered how this movie was marketed, because I really had troubles getting through it. This was the trailer for it:

Reality is that it’s a long movie where there’s so much talking that I’m pretty sure that it’s something a lot of people won’t be able to enjoy.

There must tons of other trailers which you felt were wrongly representing the actual movie:
Which trailers do you think were misleading?

Category: Movies
  • filmhipster says:

    Definitely Cosmopolis. I was pretty hyped to see this movie and it was a complete waste of time.

    October 15, 2012 at 4:12 am
    • Nostra says:

      Yeah, I had a hard time finishing it and still have to think about how to word that in my review of it.

      October 17, 2012 at 8:18 am
  • fernandorafael says:

    I can’t think of a specific one but comedy trailers are very misleading. They always put the biggest laughs in the trailer, so you think it’s gonna be a laugh-riot and super hilarious but turns out it only causes some chuckles and smiles and few big laughs. Oh, I just thought of one. Looper. Same issue with The Grey. The trailer promised an action-packed movie and it wasn’t. It was rather talky.

    October 15, 2012 at 4:23 am
    • Nostra says:

      Yeah, and because of that the jokes are not as funny anymore because you already know they are coming. Looper I have not seen yet (same with the trailer), so have expectations yet.

      October 17, 2012 at 8:19 am
  • VictorsMovieReviews says:

    “Sweeny Todd” is a musical?

    October 15, 2012 at 4:39 am
    • wordschat says:

      Interesting point. It was a Broadway musical long before it became a movie but in both cases it is more a hybrid horror play / movie which is unusual so I see your point.

      October 16, 2012 at 10:52 pm
      • Nostra says:

        I never saw the trailer for it (and haven’t watched the movie either). So they didn’t market it as a musical?

        October 17, 2012 at 8:20 am
  • Scott Lawlor (@FrontRoomCinema) says:

    HAHA Trailers are very misleading at time. The latest for me was End of Watch… trailer = action cop thriller movie = character study with a little action at the end

    October 15, 2012 at 9:43 am
    • Nostra says:

      Yeah, that’s really misleading Scott!

      October 17, 2012 at 8:20 am
  • Jaina says:

    Lawless. The trailer got me pretty damn hyped. There were gangsters and things getting thrown down. It looked like a pretty thrilling bit of prohibition era film. Like a film version of Boardwalk Empire. Didn’t pull through at all!

    Oh and those pesky Paranormal Activity trailers ALWAYS have clips that are never in the film! That’s just plain lies!

    October 15, 2012 at 10:06 am
    • Nostra says:

      Saw the movie two weeks ago and hadn’t seen anything about it. Not having expectations I quite liked it (7/10), but can imagine it being disappointing if the trailer made it look like something else.

      October 17, 2012 at 8:21 am
  • Emil says:

    The Bridge to Terabithia! The film is a wonderfully heartfelt tale about everything childhood-related, with two kids dealing with bullying, parents, teachers, feeling isolated, and much more. Part of their lives involves coming up with a make-believe fairy tale world. The trailer shows nothing but this imaginary world, and makes the movie look like a Narnia-esque kiddie fantasy fluff. It’s kind of infuriating, because the film itself is delightful and unique.

    October 15, 2012 at 10:23 am
    • Nostra says:

      That’s a movie I still have to check out. I think I have it around somewhere and the cover makes it look like a fantasy movie too, so interesting that it really is only a small part of it, but was marketed differently.

      October 17, 2012 at 8:22 am
      • Emil says:

        Oh, you have to see it. It’s an absolute gem of a movie.

        October 17, 2012 at 9:02 am
  • Novroz says:

    Agree on The Grey!! totally misleading. I felt disappointed after seeing it

    October 15, 2012 at 12:06 pm
    • Nostra says:

      Even without having seen the trailer I was disappointed by it :)

      October 17, 2012 at 8:24 am
      • Novroz says:

        lucky I saw it because my friend lent me the DVD, I dont have to spend money at all…or else I’ll terribly upset

        October 17, 2012 at 8:42 am
  • ckckred says:

    The Drive trailer made it look like an average car chase movie when it was really much more.

    October 15, 2012 at 12:53 pm
    • Nostra says:

      It was indeed as there wasn’t that much chasing anyway…

      October 17, 2012 at 8:24 am
  • Eric says:

    I know the trailers for Catfish and Drive pissed off a lot of people. Both were pretty misleading, and someone even tried to sue Drive’s distributor for false advertising.

    October 15, 2012 at 10:09 pm
    • Nostra says:

      Yeah, I remember that story :)

      October 17, 2012 at 8:24 am
  • alleyandthemovies says:

    I swear I DID NOT want to see The Grey at all. I was finally convinced by my Dad, and voila, it’s one of my favorite movies ever.

    October 16, 2012 at 12:02 am
    • Nostra says:

      Wow! Just shows what a trailer can do…just try not watching them at all. I’m pretty sure it will increase your enjoyment of a lot of movies.

      October 17, 2012 at 8:25 am
  • AndyWatchesMovies says:

    Not misleading, per se but I hated the trailer for Drive. Apparently so did some other people since that one lady was trying to sue the production company over it…

    October 16, 2012 at 5:57 pm
    • Nostra says:

      But if she sued she must have felt it was misleading….

      October 17, 2012 at 8:26 am
      • AndyWatchesMovies says:

        I think in her claim she said she wanted constant car chases like Fast and Furious, I don’t really remember. I guess she was misled by the trailer

        October 17, 2012 at 2:54 pm
  • wordschat says:

    Seeking a Friend for the End of The World with Steve Carell caught many offguard as it switched from comedy as seen in the trailers to serious half way through. It’s hard to avoid the trailers when they play at least 10 minutes of them. I like heckling trailers for instance if a trailer just isn’t grabbing me and a character starts to say “Looking for …” I’ll say loud enough fro friends to hear “a better script” or “better acting”.

    October 16, 2012 at 10:58 pm
    • Nostra says:

      That’s funny :) Personally I just don’t look at the trailers which play in front of movies. My friends don’t think it’s weird anymore when I look at the ground and plug my ears ;)

      October 17, 2012 at 8:27 am
  • The Focused Filmographer says:

    I have to ditto Eric on the Catfish one. As a matter of fact, it made my list in a post I did a while back about “Tricky Trailers” ( ) To that, I’d also add Jarhead. Expected a war movie…got something FAR different.

    Great question!

    October 17, 2012 at 2:59 am
    • Nostra says:

      So it seems I’m not the only one feeling mislead about trailers. Of course a movie needs marketing, but why do a lot of them just create false expectations. It can only damage the reputation of a director/studio…

      October 17, 2012 at 8:28 am
  • Mark Walker says:

    I’ve stopped watching trailers altogether Nostra but I do like your idea of going back over them once you’ve seen the actual movie. I must try that. Thanks man.

    October 17, 2012 at 6:53 am
    • Nostra says:

      We are some of the only ones that don’t seem to watch them Mark. Happy to have found someone else who doesn’t watch trailers. I will do it a bit more just to see the difference between them.

      October 17, 2012 at 8:29 am
      • Mark Walker says:

        Yeah, I think i’ll start doing that. I’ve even got the stage where i’ll go into the cinema late, just to avoid them.

        October 17, 2012 at 8:36 am
  • jackdeth72 says:

    Hi, Nostra and company:

    I determined years ago that the majority of a film’s Money Shots wound up in their trailers. To the point that if you paid some attention and applied imagination. You’d basically had seen the film within three to five minutes.

    Remembering what was in the trailer when seeing the film later on DVD. I was vindicated a large majority off the time.

    Sadly, most trailers today lack continuity and focus on action or expensive Special Effects scenes. (Avatar’ leaps to mind!) Making them a hodgepodge that dazzle, titillate the senses, but define little.

    Securing my Soap Box.
    Carry on.

    October 18, 2012 at 4:04 am
    • Nostra says:

      Yeah Jack, that’s the feeling I started to get a long time ago and the reason I stopped watching them. It’s so refreshing to walk into a movie without expectations.

      October 18, 2012 at 8:52 am
  • Stephanie says:

    I can’t say I’ve found misleading trailers to be an issue quite so much as how they give every freaking thing away. It drives me nuts, seriously.

    October 20, 2012 at 11:22 pm
    • Nostra says:

      That was the main reason to stop watching them, so know how you feel!

      October 21, 2012 at 2:59 pm

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