Screen Gems wants to ruin Quarantine and [REC] for everyone.

Posted by Peter Hall - July 9th 2008 @ 8:31 am

If you have not already seen [REC] I hope you, handsome and/or gorgeous reader, have not yet seen the newest trailer for QUARANTINE up over at Yahoo.  I hope that you never see the trailer.  I hope you missed the earlier teaser trailer as well.  That’s a lot of hopes in orbit of a movie I have no hope for.

The only way this trailer could give up more of the script is if it – – ah, fuck, who am I kidding, this trailer could NOT give away more of the script.  Just a week or so ago, Will Goss and I were shooting back and forth about the manhandling of the marketing so far and Goss joked, “I bet the next trailer shows [redacted].  I laughed that sad, resigned laugh of inevitably.  Turns out the trailer does show that redacted bit.  Although in fairness you may have a hard time even noticing that bit as you will be too occupied having every step of the movie shown to you.  Every.  Single.  Step.  And since QUARANTINE and [REC] are identical, if you’ve been holding out for the latter, that’s spoiled as well.

I hope (chalk up another) that there was a struggle in the marketing department at Screen Gems.  I hope that someone in the assembly line stood up and said, “No, seriously guys, we should stop showing ’em shit.  If they see this, they’ll have seen the movie.” Even if that conversation was a forgone defeat, I hope someone at least brought it up.  This is out of hand.  I suppose having seen [REC] multiple times now that I have the foresight to know the context of the trailer’s images.  I suppose others would be clueless that the trailer progresses, literally, from the film’s opener to its closer.  Uninitiated may not notice now, but they sure will come October, after they’ve seen this trailer a dozen times and the movie they’ve just paid for is following it step by fucking step.

I was willing to let it go, to let my rant subside, but I can’t.  Not when this trailer is hitting the front page of Digg, for crying out loud.  I’m glad there aren’t early shouts of, “That looks like a CLOVERFIELD rip-off!” .  And I will not preach to deaf ears, “No, see the original!!!  American movies are bullshit!!!”; The majority of people will never see the original.  Thems just the breaks.  That isn’t an excuse for showing the whole Gods’ damned movie in your trailer, though, Screen Gems.  You even show the one addition to the original script.

In the words of the wise man Gob, “COME ON!”

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  1. Brian
    July 9th, 2008 | 10:00 am | #1

    Isn’t it “G.O.B.”?

  2. July 9th, 2008 | 10:55 am | #2

    I think it’s G.O.B. the first time, but afterwards just Gob. Either way, all I want to know is where the lighter fluid came from.

    Anyway, Peter’s touching on a really important trend here. LOTS of trailers are giving half of the story — or more — away. The most egregious culprit I’ve seen as of late is Untracable, that goofy looking Diane Lane Internet killer movie. From the trailer alone, we know he kills people on the Internet, the deaths are caused by traffic, he does it more than once, they have trouble tracing him, he puts a video on Lane’s house, hacks into her car, and hides in the backseat. That last event probably comes, what, 75% of the way into the film?

    This is a huge, huge problem with movies today. When’s the last time you went into a movie knowing almost nothing about it? It happens pretty rarely for me, but when it does, I find I enjoy the film a lot more than I would have thought.

  3. Brian
    July 9th, 2008 | 11:43 am | #3

    Good point Chris. I’ve always wondered what it would be like to watch movies without knowing anything whatsoever about them. It could be a fun experiment to conduct on yourself, if it were possible. I guess it would be feasible if you allowed a certain level of contact, e.g. internet ads on non-movie sites. I don’t watch much TV so TV spots wouldn’t be a problem. I guess the hardest part would be stopping my friends from talking about them. And going to movies based on titles alone can be a dangerous game. I dunno, maybe it is a bad idea.

  4. July 9th, 2008 | 1:20 pm | #4

    Yeah, it’d be extremely tough, but I’ve resolved to try it at some point. The thing is, you don’t just want to pick a movie at random, because it might not be the KIND of movie you’re interested in.

    I’m thinking of keeping an eye out for early word of production on something and, if I like it’s one-sentence synopsis, deliberately avoidinging anything relating to it. I figure I should do this several times and ask my girlfriend to monitor things just enough to make sure it’s actually something I might want to see. I’ll go as far as plugging my ears and closing my eyes during trailers in theaters, if it comes to that.

  5. Will Goss
    July 9th, 2008 | 1:25 pm | #5

    Yeah, like the guy wearing the $4,000 suit is holding the surprises for the guy who doesn’t see them for four months!

  6. July 9th, 2008 | 2:55 pm | #6

    It’s the only way I can cirsumvent the marketing.

  7. PT
    July 9th, 2008 | 6:18 pm | #7

    [rec] was about the only movie in memory i saw knowing absolutely nothing about and it’s probably one of the main reasons i loved it so much. I didn’t even know it was about zombies so when i saw the first one i was as clueless as everyone in the film.

    They’ve made a huge mistake.

  8. Will Goss
    July 9th, 2008 | 9:28 pm | #8

    “They’ve made a huge mistake.”

    PT, FTW.

  9. July 10th, 2008 | 10:33 am | #9

    PT, didn’t know Arrested Development had a following across the pond (then again, I don’t know why I should assume it would not have one).

    Believe it or not, but I typically go into a movie knowing very little about its script. I may go in knowing a ton about the director, the writer and the cast, but I typically avoid anything that will reveal even the slightest info about story. I also rarely read reviews in full before I see a flick myself. I may skim a last paragraph to see what the yay or nay was, but past that I go in as empty as possible.

    What hurts me more than knowing for sure what is going to happen before going in is, is a cinema marketplace so predictable that I can go in empty handed and 15 minutes into a flick, I know what all the safe bets are.

    And I know I link them every week, but I never, EVER watch any of the “clips” marketing departments throw out there these days. I’ll watch a theatrical trailer, but that’s it. That clip bullshit really gets on my nerves.

  10. Sean
    July 10th, 2008 | 10:57 am | #10

    I usually only watch horror movies that 1) grab my fancy by the title or 2) are something that Peter (and now R.J.) reviews, because Peter and R.J. don’t tell you the whole story. They tell you something that’s good about it, but it’s never really the plot, and it’s really helpful to me in deciding whether I want to see it or not.

  11. PT
    July 10th, 2008 | 1:05 pm | #11

    Peter, wouldn’t say Arrested Development has full fledged following, it occasionally gets shown on TV at graveyard slots. Only reason i know about it is a friend lent me the DVDs few years ago, anyone else who knows it is from my subsequent recommendation of how perfect it is.

  12. July 13th, 2008 | 12:03 am | #12

    I’ve seen [Rec], and I was really surprised they did what they did with the Quarantine trailer. The whole big kicker at the end is shown! What a bizarre choice.

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