Ranking The Super Bowl Film Trailers

Elec Cafe linked to the Super Bowl TV spots for upcoming movies before the game. And now that we’ve seen the game – one of the dullest Super Bowls in recent memory according to everyone who isn’t a massive Patriots fan – it might just be fair to say that these trailers were the most exciting part of the broadcast. Given that most of the ads lacked their typical humor, and the halftime show was bland, there really were probably more than a few viewers who wound up more interested in the trailers than anything else that happened on Sunday night.

To keep that excitement rolling, here is one writer’s look back on how the trailers ranked in getting us hyped for the films.

7. Alita: Battle Angel

Alita: Battle Angel is perfectly intriguing, and its trailers – not just during the Super Bowl but in recent weeks and at cinemas – have been beautiful. But much of the focus here seems to be on the respected people involved offsetting the distracting, animated protagonist. And those respected people have less of an impact when you see a trailer, rush to look up a movie, and discover that negative reviews are already coming in.

6. Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark

Given Guillermo del Toro’s reputation as one of our more creative filmmakers, these TV spots seemed lacking. A drop of water lands in a dark basin; the spooky feet of what may well just be the monster from Del Toro’s The Shape Of Water plod along; a boy is dragged, scraping and clawing, from under a bed. These are hardly original horror shots, and frankly made the movie look generic and tired before it ever had a chance to look exciting.

5. Hobbs & Shaw

Hobbs & Shaw is likely going to make a ton of money. In fact it’s probably going to be one of the highest grossing films of 2019. This is because, for one thing, Dwayne Johnson is proven box office gold, but also because this is a spinoff of the sensationally popular Fast & Furious franchise. It will be a side project depicting the characters of Hobbs (Johnson) and Shaw (Jason Statham) apparently doing all sorts of insane stunts to prevent cataclysmic events. It’s about the only thing that could have caused as much buzz as two new Marvel trailers on the same night, and rest assured the internet is already breaking down the trailer. That said, as fun as it is to imagine this spinoff, this particular TV spot didn’t show us much beyond action sequences that could be in any Hollywood flick.

4. Us

Jordan Peele has me running for cover with this one. If his breakthrough film Get Out was horror-adjacent, Us looks like a full-fledged freak show. And contrary to Del Toro’s Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark, this trailer shows us some fresh scares, from a mysterious figure dripping blood on a bright, sunny beach, to the core concept of the film (as we understand it so far), which is a family encountering a warped, evil version of itself. It’s a terrifying, exhilarating trailer, and a job well done.

3. Captain Marvel

Captain Marvel has her work cutout for her. Whether Marvel likes it or not, she’s essentially up against Wonder Woman (and Gal Gadot), who beat her to “first female superhero lead” status and became something of a franchise unto herself within the DC Extended Universe. Wonder Woman will have a sequel, and has been dubbed a hero to girls around the world. She features within an ever-expanding world of games on casino sites online, and is beautifully rendered in some more conventional DC games as well. In short, she’s a phenomenon. Captain Marvel can’t accomplish all of this. She can’t stand out as much because the MCU is more packed with successes than the DCEU (which desperately needed Wonder Woman); she won’t appear in casino games because Disney pulled all Marvel content from them. But she still needs to be a success, which is what makes this trailer so interesting in the end. Frankly it was a little lacking in terms of
specific reasons to be excited, but the buzz is inherent to the character at this point.

2. Wonder Park

The first 20 seconds or so of the Wonder Park trailer had it looking like Paramount’s decades-late Toy Story knockoff, which wasn’t particularly exciting. However, as the trailer moved along, there started to be touches of magic and originality that I can only imagine will be thrilling to younger generations. The idea is straight out of Toy Story, in that the film seems to revolve around a boy’s toys coming to life. However, the idea of this happening once the boy has grown up more is a nice twist, and the idea that he finds all of his living toys in a magical theme park hidden in the woods is pure fun. This was an immensely charming trailer in the midst of early looks at blockbusters and horror films, and on a shot-for-shot basis it may have actually been the best of the night. However….

1. Avengers: Endgame

How can anyone argue with the excitement building for Avengers: Endgame at this point? This trailer didn’t really even show us anything and it still seemed like the most important moment of the night. We do see hints of a world in which (spoiler alert for those who haven’t seen Avengers: Infinity War) people have simply disappeared. But mostly, we just get the remaining Avengers gearing up for… well… avenging – one last time. In the simplest way, it could almost give you goosebumps, and it certainly established that the April release can’t come soon enough.