Movie trailers are an interesting thing. It’s a marketing tool designed to highlight the best and most appealing moments of an upcoming movie, but without giving too much away and spoiling the whole plot (most of the time, anyway). In some cases, movie trailers end up being better than the finished movie when it comes out. Clever editing, music, and capturing the overall tone of an upcoming movie can build hype for a release that few other marketing campaigns can.
But which trailers would they consider “the best of all time”? Fortunately, this is not a discussion that is rarely found on the Internet. In fact, it’s actually a conversation that comes up quite often in online forums. Reddit especially!
Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)
Some people might not believe it, but there was a time when years had passed between star wars movies. Pop culture has seen tons of anime, books, and comics between the prequels and the new trilogy, but the idea of a new saga was seemingly a pipe dream until Star Wars: The Force Awakens released an official trailer in 2014.
Redditor original_scent award the force awakens teaser trailer (2014) because “it introduced the new characters, didn’t reveal the story, and gave us the first new footage of the Millennium Falcon since Return of the Jedi”. It’s all of these elements that likely led to the trailer’s 79 million views on YouTube.
Man of Steel (2013)
At the start of the DCEU (DC Extended Universe), Warner Brothers was trying to crack the code on how to reverse engineer their cinematic universe to compete with the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe). It all started with Zack Snyder Steel man; a new take on the legendary superhero that leaned more toward mature audiences to differentiate itself from the humorous, witty films of the MCU.
According to MatchesMalone66 on Reddit, “I still remember watching it 6 years ago and being incredibly excited, though a lot of the credit probably goes to the LOTR soundtrack and comic dialogue All-Star Superman”. Giving more reason for the claim that music, editing, and tone are essential building blocks for any great movie trailer.
Horror and thriller movie trailers haven’t always been held to the same level as drama or action movies. In fairness to the genre, it’s harder to sum up what viewers can expect in a 2-minute trailer when studios want to save all the scares for the full release. But Hereditarydirected by Ari Aster, managed to balance the two beautifully.
As mentioned before, sound design and editing can make or break a motion trailer, which is exactly why Redditor harrisonisdead claimed it was one of the best ever. “It’s super well put together, has great sound design, and effectively builds interest in the film.” Not to mention the trailer itself was awful.
The Social Network (2010)
Film biopics are an interesting genre to construct a trailer. They follow the true stories, or mostly true stories, of some of the most interesting people to ever live. But editing a trailer for real events together can be difficult when Wikipedia can mess up an entire movie before it’s released.
Once again, sound design plays a big part in why Redditor Johnny_Mc2 claims The social network has one of the best trailers ever: “This is the first trailer is probably the best I’ve ever seen, the use of Radiohead’s Creep and the clips at the end are impeccable”.
Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
The MCU had one Achilles’ heel for their universe’s debut, and that was their scores. It’s only The Avengers that a correctly marked theme was beginning to take hold, but it was that of James Gunn guardians of the galaxy which really took Marvel’s soundtrack to the next level – which began in a trailer that brilliantly used ’80s music to introduce fans to a new cast of misfit heroes.
This is one of the reasons why PokerTheKristin claims that guardians of the galaxy has one of the best trailer setups ever. “Everything you need to know about our characters is in this trailer without a single thing about the plot. No one knew about the Guardians and so presenting them with a line-up was awesome. Also, Ogga Chakka!”.
The Servant (2016)
The amount of high-profile entertainment coming out of South Korea in recent years has been staggering. It didn’t start squid game (2020) or even Parasite (2019) Besides. Many critically acclaimed, cult-following movies have been released recently and there’s no Reddit thread on the internet that doesn’t mention The servant as one of the best movies and trailers of the last decade.
With sonic precision that would make Edgar Wright cry, The servant got so much attention from Redditors that some even resort to watching it every month. “The Handmaiden is one of the few trailers I like to watch every few months. I wasn’t the only one who liked it, the director of Kong: Skull Island was inspired by it” claimed peteballoon on Reddit.
Between 2016 and 2017, a new avenue of comic book movies was tested by studios, making them R-Rated. Of course, movies like Blade and Spawn had tried it years before, but it wasn’t until Ryan Reynold dead Pool (2016) that studios realized they could benefit from limiting viewership to 18+. While Dead Pool – an honorable mention for best trailer – tossed the R-Rated ball, it was Logan who broke it at home.
Once again, the choice to sample Johnny Cash’s cover of the Nine Inch Nails hit “Hurt” contributed to its success, as Redditor Wiger_King points out: “Perhaps the best trailer and music combo of them all. the temperature”. Even to this day it is difficult to watch the Logan trailer without becoming covered in goosebumps. It’s no exaggeration to say that the current tone of comic book movies can be traced back to this particular trailer and movie.
just like how Logan and dead Pool inspired the next 10 years of comic book movies, it’s safe to say that Ridley Scott Extraterrestrial continues to inspire, even 43 years later. Extraterrestrial not only paved the way for women in film to direct action films, but the trailer itself managed to create a level of suspense, curiosity, and unease that is still replicated to this day. And he did all of this without any dialogue or voiceovers.
Which several Reddit users agree on. AF2005 gets more specific with his take on the trailer saying, “It holds up well. A great example of tension building. The pulse with Nostromo’s Horn alarm in the background still gives me goosebumps.” A suspenseful score, quick cuts, and just enough to draw in and horrify audiences is why Extraterrestrial continues to reign as the best movie trailer of all time.
Next: 10 Places Jon Bernthal’s Punisher Could Appear In The MCU
Every Type Of Magic In The MCU And Which Is The Most Powerful