|You had me at 'Kelly Clarkson!'
Friday, June 09, 2006
It doesn't take much for a trailer to get our attention. One good line can do it. Steve
Carell screaming "Kelly Clarkson!" convinced millions of moviegoers to take a
chance on The 40 Year-Old Virgin, and Carell's perfect pronunciation of the line,
"You don't speak because of Friedrich Nietzsche" is probably all the reason you
need to watch this summer's Little Miss Sunshine, about an eight-year-old whose
family (including Toni Collette and Greg Kinnear) drive her across the country to
compete in a beauty pageant. Similarly, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
has had several teasers and trailers in theatres, but only the latest contains the line
"summon the kraken!" (and a score seemingly penned by Richard Wagner). Any
film that promises to call forth a giant sea squid has got to have some solid
Sometimes a line in a trailer will divide audiences. If you're the type who likes the
"You had me at hello" type of dialogue, you may find The Lake House has you at
Sandra Bullock's dreamy delivery of "Even though this is clearly impossible, it's
amazing." If you're not into cheese, you might just laugh at the over-the-top
romance in this preview. But cynics and romantics will probably find common
ground in realizing that Keanu Reeves' line -- "I bought a house. On the lake" -- is
more exposition than a film called The Lake House really needs.
Some trailers can confound our expectations. Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties is
unlikely to be the next Dickensian classic, but the image of a cat with the voice of
Bill Murray screaming "The British are coming, the British are coming!" while a
beefeater chases him makes the film sound almost appealing. On the other hand,
My Super Ex-Girlfriend's Uma Thurman, Luke Wilson and Rainn Wilson and director
Ivan Reitman are all proven talents, but the trailer is seemingly constructed to warn
us away from the picture. Its funniest line is, "That's why I didn't kill you."
And speaking of killing, why, in the sneak peak at this fall's Casino Royale, does
Daniel Craig not get to utter the immortal words "Bond. James Bond"? Instead he
has to make do with the line, "You want me to be half monk, half hitman," as though
he were auditioning for a part in The Da Vinci Code. It's enough to make a
moviegoer scream "Pierce Brosnan!"
© National Post 2006