Long Movie Trailers Are Ruining The Movie-Going Experience

Long Movie Trailers Are Ruining The Movie-Going Experience

How much is too much?

Movie trailers have become an important part of film marketing. It’s all tethered in with the cinematic experience. What makes movie trailers so valuable is building up the anticipation and excitement with a targeted audience, which, hopefully, translates into a successful opening weekend. The first movie trailer premiered in 1913 for the film The Pleasure Seeker. The trailer comes in at a whopping 15 seconds, which isn't long enough to find out anything about a movie. But I am sure the trailer sparked some curiosity with film audiences. Fast-forward to 2017, and the length of an average movie trailer is too long, and it's ruining the movie-going experience. At least there are solutions to the problem, or audiences would be stuck with super long trailers that are annoying and give away too much information.

How much is too much.

Film trailers hit a peak in between 1980-1995 when the film industry saw a surge of action movies. Back then, the standard length of a trailer maxed out at two minutes. Studios knew how to utilize just enough content and time to garner audience interest in the hopes they buy movie tickets on the film's release date. However, over the past 20 years, it seems movie trailers have become longer, thus giving way more information than it should to the audience. Currently, the standard movie trailer is three minutes long, with red band trailers (which tend to feature graphic violence, harsh language, drug use, and nudity) reaching up to five minutes.

How can anyone savor the impact of a plot climax if you’ve already seen the most important elements in a trailer? For a first time viewing, the less you know, the better. Discovering the story, characters, and plot twist add to the movie-going experience. Or you get the opposite situation – you view a full three-minute trailer and still have no idea what you just watched!

Longer trailers are taking over

Take the red band trailer for Edge of Seventeen as an example.

From watching the almost five-minute red band trailer, here’s what you’ll gather: Nadine (Hailee Steinfield) is 17 years old and has hit rock bottom. She’s doing poorly in school, has a crappy relationship with her family, and is virtually ignored by her high-school crush. She’s a foul-mouthed, neurotic teenager on the edge of adulthood.

The trailer divulges everything you can expect to see in the movie. I know because I've seen Edge of Seventeen in its entirety. I could predict everything that was going to happen, thanks to that extra long trailer. In the end, organizing a trip to the theaters for Edge of Seventeen, felt like a waste of time.

Another example is the trailer for 2016s The Huntsman: Winters War, a prequel to the 2012 film, Snow White and The Huntsman.

After watching the movie, and then, doubling back to look at the trailer – not only is the trailer too long (at 2:40), it's deceptive. Specific parts of the trailer that I was excited to see in the film weren’t included.Then there is the movie tagline, “Relive the story before Snow White.” This is the story the trailer promotes, but once you see the film, it goes in an entirely different direction which is unfair to the anticipating audience.

So, what’s the solution?

The solutions are simple. For starters, do away with red band trailers. If studios want their targeted audience to know about explicit scenes or explicit language, encourage them to research MPAA ratings. Every film has a rating, and the wording present inside the rating box provides relevant information about the movies you choose to watch.

Next, shorten these trailers to 2:30 seconds or less. Short trailers will hopefully encourage studios to get more creative with the marketing and how to be resourceful with the footage they choose to use.

Movie trailers should be enticing, timely, and the reason audiences' flock to the movies. All the unnecessary additions to new trailers are a real buzzkill on the whole movie-going experience. It's time for studios to give movie fans more credit instead of assuming people are too stupid to decipher what they are watching. The less the audience knows, the better.

So my message for Hollywood is: don’t ruin it by overdoing it.

The trailer for the 2017 science-fiction film Life is a good example of a trailer that uses footage, time, and content just right. Take a look:

Cover Image Credit: Preview

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College As Told By Junie B. Jones

A tribute to the beloved author Barbara Parks.

The Junie B. Jones series was a big part of my childhood. They were the first chapter books I ever read. On car trips, my mother would entertain my sister and me by purchasing a new Junie B. Jones book and reading it to us. My favorite part about the books then, and still, are how funny they are. Junie B. takes things very literally, and her (mis)adventures are hilarious. A lot of children's authors tend to write for children and parents in their books to keep the attention of both parties. Barbara Park, the author of the Junie B. Jones series, did just that. This is why many things Junie B. said in Kindergarten could be applied to her experiences in college, as shown here.

When Junie B. introduces herself hundreds of times during orientation week:

“My name is Junie B. Jones. The B stands for Beatrice. Except I don't like Beatrice. I just like B and that's all." (Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus, p. 1)

When she goes to her first college career fair:

"Yeah, only guess what? I never even heard of that dumb word careers before. And so I won't know what the heck we're talking about." (Junie B. Jones and her Big Fat Mouth, p. 2)

When she thinks people in class are gossiping about her:

“They whispered to each other for a real long time. Also, they kept looking at me. And they wouldn't even stop." (Junie B., First Grader Boss of Lunch, p. 66)

When someone asks her about the library:

“It's where the books are. And guess what? Books are my very favorite things in the whole world!" (Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus, p. 27)

When she doesn't know what she's eating at the caf:

“I peeked inside the bread. I stared and stared for a real long time. 'Cause I didn't actually recognize the meat, that's why. Finally, I ate it anyway. It was tasty...whatever it was." (Junie B., First Grader Boss of Lunch, p. 66)

When she gets bored during class:

“I drew a sausage patty on my arm. Only that wasn't even an assignment." (Junie B. Jones Loves Handsome Warren, p. 18)

When she considers dropping out:

“Maybe someday I will just be the Boss of Cookies instead!" (Junie B., First Grader Boss of Lunch, p. 76)

When her friends invite her to the lake for Labor Day:

“GOOD NEWS! I CAN COME TO THE LAKE WITH YOU, I BELIEVE!" (Junie B. Jones Smells Something Fishy, p. 17)

When her professor never enters grades on time:

“I rolled my eyes way up to the sky." (Junie B., First Grader Boss of Lunch, p. 38)

When her friends won't stop poking her on Facebook:

“Do not poke me one more time, and I mean it." (Junie B. Jones Smells Something Fishy, p. 7)

When she finds out she got a bad test grade:

“Then my eyes got a little bit wet. I wasn't crying, though." (Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus, p. 17)

When she isn't allowed to have a pet on campus but really wants one:


When she has to walk across campus in the dark:

“There's no such thing as monsters. There's no such thing as monsters." (Junie B. Jones Has a Monster Under Her Bed, p. 12)

When her boyfriend breaks her heart:

“I am a bachelorette. A bachelorette is when your boyfriend named Ricardo dumps you at recess. Only I wasn't actually expecting that terrible trouble." (Junie B. Jones Is (almost) a Flower Girl, p. 1)

When she paints her first canvas:

"And painting is the funnest thing I love!" (Junie B. Jones and her Big Fat Mouth, p. 61)

When her sorority takes stacked pictures:

“The biggie kids stand in the back. And the shortie kids stand in the front. I am a shortie kid. Only that is nothing to be ashamed of." (Junie B. Jones Has a Monster Under Her Bed, p. 7)

When she's had enough of the caf's food:

“Want to bake a lemon pie? A lemon pie would be fun, don't you think?" (Junie B. Jones Has a Monster Under Her Bed p. 34)

When she forgets about an exam:

“Speechless is when your mouth can't speech." (Junie B. Jones Loves Handsome Warren, p. 54)

When she finds out she has enough credits to graduate:

“A DIPLOMA! A DIPLOMA! I WILL LOVE A DIPLOMA!" (Junie B. Jones is a Graduation Girl p. 6)

When she gets home from college:

"IT'S ME! IT'S JUNIE B. JONES! I'M HOME FROM MY SCHOOL!" (Junie B. Jones and some Sneaky Peaky Spying p. 20)

Cover Image Credit: OrderOfBooks

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Must-See Movies For Your Summer

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Here are a few movies to check out this summer when you want to cool down for a little while:

1. "The Lion King"

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