The Best Movie Trailers of 2018
If you’re like me, you look forward to seeing new trailers before a movie. In under 3 minutes, filmmakers have to sell you on their movie while being concise and informative. Well-done movie trailers are like little works of art all on their own, some being even better than the films themselves.
Here’s my Top Ten Movie Trailers of 2018:
1. Mid 90s
Mid90s is a film where I wholeheartedly loved the trailer more than the film itself. To me, this trailer is a work of art. The song choices fit the film and perfectly accompany with certain scenes in the trailer. The color gradient and subtleties like the flaws in the film look like they came straight from the 90s and capture the nostalgia from that decade.
The entire sequence where Stevie is peeking into his brother’s room is incredible with the door opening as the music picks up, the different editing breaks timed with the beats of the song. Or when Ray delivers his monologue how you wouldn’t trade your problems for someone else’s and the music swells as he and Stevie skateboard down the road together. Careful details like those make this trailer feel like a two-minute film, and a great one at that.
2. A Star is Born
Whenever the trailer for A Star is Born came on in the theatre, I genuinely got excited. Both musically and aesthetically, this trailer absolutely excels. The way the trailer shows both Jackson and Ally’s points of view, introducing their stories, is so smooth as it transitions to having their paths cross and their perspectives intertwine.
This is another trailer that cleverly integrates music from the movie into the trailer, layering it with meaningful scenes and short glimpses into the story. A Star is Born’s trailer gives you enough of a look into the movie to make you fall in love with the characters’ relationship, while also not giving away too much so you want to go out and see how the story unfolds. Overall, this was definitely one of the best trailers of the year.
3. Bohemain Rhapsody
Bohemian Rhapsody’s trailers are a no-brainer when listing the best trailers of the year. Using the beloved music of Queen in impressive mashups is a surefire way of exciting audiences, tapping into their familiarity with the band and desire to see a reproduction of their history. The trailer also gives a sneak peek at the perfect casting decisions of the familiar faces that Queen fans will recognize.
You can bet than when this trailer came on in theatres, the audience was tapping their feet along to the recognizable, loved songs and having them looking forward to a tribute of one of the biggest names in music.
4. If Beale Street Could Talk
If Beale Street Could Talk set a standard for trailers that are a work of art on their own. The storytelling is so captivating in the way that it’s edited. It’s hard to describe, but I felt an attachment to these characters and the story in a short two minutes in a way that I’ve never felt before. The music acts as an incredibly beautiful accompaniment to a beautiful preview of the film.
If Beale Street Could Talk is a gold standard for trailers. With no narration spelling the plot out for you, you still understand the premise and the characters behind it. It’s rare for a trailer to be this emotionally enthralling, but it’s an insight into how moving the film has to be.
5. Eighth Grade
Leave it to A24 to always have the best trailers and Eighth Grade was no different. The audience is transported back to the horrors and nostalgia of middle school to the tune of Enya. This trailer perfectly conveys the chaos of growing up in the Internet age with influences like YouTube and Instagram setting the impossible standard of living.
But Eighth Grade’s trailer is so well-done, both in artistic value and its portrayal of the cringey moments that are inevitable as an eighth grader.
6. Avengers: Infinity War
Avengers: Infinity War was arguably the most anticipated superhero film of all time. The trailer for Avengers: Infinity War is the perfect Thanos-approved balance of generating excitement while keeping details of the plot a secret. The audience gets to see their favorite characters interacting for the first time in franchise history. We also meet Thanos as a major character for the first time, hearing a confident monologue from the most powerful villain the Avengers have had to face.
From the epic Avengers theme song to Thor coming face-to-face with the Guardians of the Galaxy, any Marvel fan gets goosebumps from this trailer and this preview lived up to all of the excitement built up around it.
7. The Favourite
Being a period drama that was unlike anything in 2018 with its quirky style, the trailer for The Favourite had to stand apart and it truly did. The audience gets a taste of The Favourite’s dark humor, but also a feel for the chaos and turmoil of the story. This is another trailer that’s done so artistically well and sets the film apart as a unique Oscar contender of 2018.
This was one trailer stood out from the usual trailer roll before a movie. It’s one of the few trailers where you know the film is going to be a good one, based on the superb preview that audiences were given.
8. Mary Poppins Returns
Even after 54 years, the teaser trailer for Mary Poppins Returns perfectly captures the spirit and magic of its predecessor. The music and Emily Blunt’s interpretation of our beloved Mary Poppins make this trailer stand apart and have made audiences everywhere teary-eyed with nostalgia from seeing an iconic character come back to life. While being a short snippet of the film to come, it was just enough to excite audiences, as the story of Mary Poppins is so commonly known.
This trailer is practically perfect in every way, somehow encapsulating the atmosphere and energy of 1960’s musicals in Hollywood when the original Mary Poppins was released.
9. The Mule
The Mule successfully proves that a movie studio can stress out an entire audience in a little over two minutes. This trailer not only gives you an understanding of the story, but also of the pressure that you’re going to be under while watching the film itself. Through the use of tense music while featuring the perspectives of both Earl Stone and those working to infiltrate the drug operation he’s working in, the trailer alone is able to depict the intensity of the story.
Not many trailers allow the audience to experience the emotion of the film itself, but The Mule sets the tone and lays out an intriguing storyline to attract potential viewers.
10. Bad Times at the El Royale
I’m a sucker for a good teaser trailer and Bad Times at the El Royale has an incredibly intriguing one. The way the trailer sets the story up to be a joyful tale from the 70’s, with a premise that’s already interesting with a hotel set on the middle of two state lines, before shifting to the darker tones that remain throughout the film. While showing off its star-studded cast, this trailer gives you enough details to attract you before leaving you wanting more. Some of the shots are incredible too, namely the shot towards the end with Cynthia Ervio standing panicked in the rain in front of the neon El Royale sign.
This is the perfect example of what a teaser trailer should be: a taste for the plot that leaves you wanting answers.
What are some of the trailers that were memorable to you from 2018? Did the films live up to the expectations those trailers set for you?