Before I post the two trailers in question and critique the "Titans" trailer, I just want to state for the record that I am jazzed to see both of these movies. They both look like fun and appeal to my inner child.
Now take a minute to watch the trailer for "The Brave." It's only a couple of minutes long.
The trailer is essentially 2 minutes, or so, taken straight out of the film. Two minutes that encapsulate a story on their own, that hint at the stakes surrounding the situation, and that entertain. I now want to see the movie now more than ever, and have the sense that the film will make me weep as its twists are revealed.
Now take a minute to watch the trailer for "Wrath of the Titans."
From the opening BWAAAAAM -- straight out of "Inception" -- there is cut scene after cut scene of ever escalating action that reveals that our hero will have to battle many mythical beasts over the course of the film. Never mind that a releasing of the Titans, and their war against humanity, would make for an exciting series of films let alone a single picture. A fact that makes it appear as if this film will be trying to do too much in too little time, and at the expense of creating an actual narrative. The action scenes are compelling, and heighten my desire to see the spectacle of the film, but they do little to invest me emotionally in the film.
Both trailers make me want to watch the films, but one demonstrates that the film I will be watching will make me feel something emotionally while the other bludgeons me with spectacle.
I can't help but feel that the reliance on a spectacle oriented trailer, rather than an emotional one, for the upcoming "John Carter" film is a bad move. There is action in the John Carter series of tales, to be sure, but there is also a great romance. It is a mythic romance and the trailers have done little to convey that fact. I would even go so far as to say that the Super Bowl trailer made me want to watch the film less.
Compare the "John Carter: Virginia" clip to the Super Bowl ad. The Virginia clip makes me want to watch the movie, the Super Bowl ad makes me believe that Disney doesn't really believe in the story or that the characters are worth highlighting. Thankfully, the Virginia clip exists and lets me know that there will be character development -- even if it is apocryphal -- and not just spectacle.
I'll take Virginia over spectacle any day, and I'll take a short continual glimpse into the world over clips featuring the soundtrack of "Inception."