The Men are Back!

Well it is that time again, folks!  Another quandary into the art form that is a 2 minute trailer.  It markets and sells the picture, but it also has a style and a form which I find just as interesting as many movies themselves!  This week I turn to something that was a blast from the past.  I remember watching movies 1 & 2 as a kid and really enjoying them, so to see that the series was coming back was a happy surprise.  So, without further ado, please enjoy the Men in Black 3 trailer and then keep scrolling for my analysis.

As GLaDOS says, it has been a long time. 🙂  I have distinct memories of watching this with my friend Isaiah in the basement of his old house and laughing so hard at the witty banter between Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones.  I also remember being really creeped out by the “Bug Man”.  Anyway, I really enjoyed the first two movies and seeing this trailer brought back a lot of the good memories.

The first 5 seconds of this trailer are SPECTACULAR!!!  Without need of obvious name dropping or anything more than a simple question, the audience can all feel the anticipation of what is to come (the logo all decked out also certainly helped).  After that we get what is know as “Fan Service” – deliberately marketed images and dialogue designed to tickle the outsider’s fancy enough to stay interested while giving the fan boys & girls what they have been waiting for. Lots of cool flashback shots to stuff from the previous films remind us of how good those were and get us excited for this coming one.

About 0:19, we get a shift into the new stuff and it looks pretty cool.  The new werewolf-looking bad guy and the graffiti alien, along with some NEW witty dialogue from Smith, all work to assure audiences that this third installment still has the style of the previous two but that it will be kicking it up a notch from there.

Then at 0:38, we start to get into the actual story arc of the movie.  What really works for this trailer (as I have been over many times already) is the blending of the old style with some new tricks.  I could honestly see this film having come out right after #2, yet the storyline does go to a whole new level, showing how long they have taken to craft it. The “Secrets of the Universe and nothing more” line really solidifies that union.  I think the premise given there is really spectacular and I look forward to seeing how far they let that go.

After that it gets a bit weird – but really that is on purpose.  Will Smith walks into his own offices with no apparent time change and then gets a clearly different answer than he was expecting to here.  This scene seems really odd just because at this point we have no idea where we are in time.  Last time I checked, Agent K was alive and now he is dead?  This is the brilliant design of the editor, showing us that MIB3 will be crossing the boundaries of Time.  We get a clear mental preview of where the film is headed by a simple editing trick 🙂

Best of all, the trailer climaxes on a really strong note.  The “Time Jump” joke clarification probably wasn’t needed but it gets us the necessary setup.  Anyway, Smith leaps off of the Empire State Building and we cut to a great POV shot as he falls towards the NYC pavement.  What works so well is the ramping music and the fact that, as he gets closer to the ground, we don’t really know whether he will pull out of it or not.  He just keeps getting closer and closer until CAMERA TILT onto an entirely different plain where the title slide is!!!  Holy Mackerel, that was sick!  You get some brief sense of vertigo followed by a visual metaphor saying, “This film is going to mess with your head!”  Really awesome stuff!

Finishing it off, playing up the theme really punches in how well this finale will cap off the MIB Trilogy in a magnificent way. The final scene we get with future J on past K’s desk gives me hope that the new actor will do at least decently and mostly acts as the “How will this work out?” hook needed to get the fan base buzzing about it again.  They had a great trailer prior, but this just stirs the pot a bit more, which is exactly what they are looking for.

Overall, I thought it was a great trailer that really got me pumped for the revival of a childhood favorite.  Whether all this hype will transfer into the film itself is yet to be seen, but I know that the marketing team can rest easy knowing they put out one heck of a trailer.

Final Rating:  5//5

Yup!  There you go!  If you can’t tell, I am excited 🙂  I really think this film is going to turn out well, and if the trailer has anything to say about that (and I think it does), then I don’t think I have much to worry about.  If you think I am full of it and have been zapped by their little Neuralyzer, let me know in the comments below.

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I wanted to take some time to say thank you.  This year has been great and I really appreciate you taking time to read my analyses of the art form that is a Trailer.  It has meant a lot to me over this year to see the viewer count rise and know that it all comes from people like you spreading the word and getting your friends to check it out.  So, from my heart to yours, my deepest thanks and a warm wish that you have a Happy Holiday season this year.

That being said, let me tell you what I am planning for next year!  Like most of you I assume, I will be taking a Christmas break from my work and thus this will be the last post of 2011.  However, don’t fret as I have big plans to kick off my second year as a blogger and critic.

As we kick off 2012, check back for my WEEK-LONG NEW YEAR TRAILER EXTRAVAGANZA!  On January 2nd, I will unveil my review of the brand-spanking new Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey trailer!  Following that, each weekday for the first week of the new year, one new trailer review will go up on the blog at noon.  Trailer season is in full swing and I have every intention of being on top of it, so stay tuned for a week chock full of great reviews for some very big trailers!

Again thank you for a fabulous year and I look forward to seeing you all in January.
Merry Christmas and God Bless!

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About Tyler D. Welch

Filmmaker, Storyteller, Scholar View all posts by Tyler D. Welch

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