Scott Ellington's Blog

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Trailers & Previews

I’ve just spent a couple of hours with Reg and Ron Kray.  The spare special features of Legend include a tidy Making Of and the director’s commentary; pretty satisfying.  I learned enough about the ’60s rulers of London to move on to the other film I rented from NetFlix, Rise of the Krays — a film to which I’ve gravitated not because I’ve seen its promotional spot(s), but because it takes an alternative shot at a pair of historic figures about whom I’ve known nothing.

So I’m watching the unavoidable previews that precede DVD presentation of the film I actually want to see, and I noticed that each of the four trailers for four distinct Lions Gate action features follow the same insipid formula that informs of the title of each film in cluttered text at the very end of the annoyingly brief, staccato segment, which is immediately followed by the next tachistoscopic trailer.  Not clever marketing in an era that permits me to buy a copy with the press of a few buttons, so long as I remember the name of the film.

Ladies and Gentlemen, kindly slow this shit the fuck down.

And while I’m on the subject of film titles…they used to be relevant, definitive of something that reasonably-uniquely distinguished each product from all other films.  Now Heist, Score, Killer Elite, Killing Season, The Score, Ronin and Showtime may have more in common than Robert De Niro, but whatever it is that distinguishes these films from one another doesn’t appear in their titles to the extent that Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Midnight Run, Backdraft, A Bronx Tale and Casino conjure discrete, precise and memorable perceptions that brook very little confusion.

Tim Minear said clearly that Twentieth Century Fox had no clue how to draw an audience to Firefly (so what good is a distribution giant that cannot attract enough customers to justify production to its own conservative beancounters?)  I think the inability to grab attention is to be expected with the proliferation of channels and outlets escalates, but Legend is another example of audience misdirection.  Legend (1985) or Legend (2015) helps a bit, but Cloverfield and 10 Cloverfield Lane bundled by iTunes as a “double-feature” is ridiculously misleading to the very brink of criminal reliance on the creative contributions of J.J. Abrams, who served as a producer on both films.

Does Disney give branding lessons?

16 Sep 16 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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