The Power of a Good Movie Trailer

How many times have you gone to see a movie based on how awesome the trailer looks? If you’re like me then that number is unknown but definitely high. A good movie trailer combines the perfect music with amazingly put together shots that make me go “I have to see that now!”  The worst part is when that trailer lets me down. This has happened all too often and I guess that’s on me for continuing to fall for it but I’m a sucker for a great trailer.

This post is mostly meant to generate discussion; I am smart enough to know that the trailer is meant as a marketing tool and that if I think I need to see the movies then they have done their job. The thing is I am going to keep falling for it because sometimes I am blown away by a film and it is always worth it for that.

Sometimes I could care less about a movie trailer, it doesn’t catch me or make me think twice about it and then I see the movie and I fall in love with it. Sometimes a trailer is completely deceiving and makes me think I am in for one thing and then I get something completely different. Sometimes that can be good and sometimes it can be terrible.

Below are a few examples of movie trailers that I have loved, hated or felt nothing for and then my thoughts on the film will follow.

Share yours in the comments below!

The Place Beyond the Pines

I loved this movie, I know a lot of people thought it was fine but not great but not me, I really enjoyed it. I saw it twice in the theater which I don’t do too often these days. The thing about this trailer is that it doesn’t match the movie too well. I feel like they really sell the Ryan Gosling factor because that will obviously get people in seats but he is just a small part of a much bigger story. For me this movie is more about Bradley Cooper and I must say I was expecting some scenes of the two men together. The promotional campaign had the two in interviews together and talking about making this film together but they don’t really share a scene, at least not really any dialogue. I still thought this was a great movie, this was a case of a trailer misleading me but in a good way.

You can find The Place Beyond the Pines on Amazon

Cloud Atlas

When I first saw this extended trailer for Cloud Atlas I was blown away, I thought this movie is either going to be amazing or it is going to fall completely flat. In actuality it fell kind of in the middle for me. I thought it was good but not great, very ambitious and beautifully shot but not as amazing as I wanted it to be. The trailer got me very excited and maybe made my expectations too high but in the end it was just an alright movie that I can’t really remember intricate details from because there was just so much going on.

You can find Cloud Atlas on Amazon


I think the Looper trailer looks pretty cool and makes the movie seem like it’s going to be a pretty interesting action movie but when I watched this film I found something different. The movie was very different from what I was expecting, I enjoyed it thoroughly and would watch it again but I remember thinking it was not at all what I thought it was going to be. It was less action and more story, it had more layers than I expected and some really great performances. I always like it when I watch a trailer and get something much better from the actual movie.

You can find Looper on Amazon

The Social Network

When this movie trailer started making the rounds I remember thinking “cool Radiohead cover but who the hell is going to watch a movie about Facebook”. I had very little expectations for this film, I wasn’t very excited by the cast and the thought of a movie about Facebook seemed so lame. Of course I went and saw the movie, it was directed by David Fincher and written by Aaron Sorkin so of course I loved it. I’m not sure why I ever doubted that combo. I thought this movie was really great, smart and witty, well written and wonderfully shot. The soundtrack was awesome and there were some great performances by actors that were never really on my radar. So in the end, the trailer wasn’t what got me in the theater but I ended up loving the movie and have watched it multiple times since.

You can find The Social Network on Amazon

Due Date

This movie should have been so much better than it was. The combination of Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galafianakis should have been so much better than it was. The trailer was funny and showed promise but the movie fell completely flat for me. I don’t remember laughing out loud at all and even the story was just kind of boring. These two actors together should have been hilarious, the director of The Hangover directed this and still it wasn’t good. It has so much promise and could have been a great comedy but it wasn’t and that makes me sad.

You can find Due Date on Amazon

These are just a handful of trailers that I remember having strong thoughts on. Let me know in the comments some of the movie trailers that excited, disappointed or even surprised you!


Currently a Television Development Production Manager & Producer. Courtney also has background in Assistant Directing, Production Coordinating and Production Assisting.

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