Trailers are an under-appreciated art form insofar that many times they’re seen as vehicles for showing footage, explaining films away, or showing their hand about what moviegoers can expect. Foreign, domestic, independent, big budget: What better way to hone your skills as a thoughtful moviegoer than by deconstructing these little pieces of advertising? This week we’re going to be ground up for fertilizer, go on a walkabout, unknowingly buy a human leg, get accused of being a chomo and talk about death by prescription medication. 

100 Bloody Acres Trailer

Well, that was unexpected.

I wasn’t sure what directors Cameron Cairnes and Colin Cairnes wanted me to feel after seeing this trailer but I’m exasperated. Part comedy, part horror, complete farce, there’s just a nice tone this trailer strikes with the way it is selling itself. From establishing quickly that this is going down a dark road to making sure to interweave some of the more silly bits, we get a fairly accurate representation of the way things are going to play out.

One of the biggest compliments I can pay is that I have no idea where things are going. To be sure, good will triumph and one of the victims will live to see another day but it’s unclear who will be left standing by the end. Because we don’t know too much about what brought us here in the first place we aren’t let in on how this might end. And, for a movie like this, the less we know the better.

Satellite Boy Trailer

Sometimes, these things sit out there for a while before I realize they’re out there.

For months this has been out in the ether but after stumbling upon director Catriona McKenzie’s ode to the childhood fantasy of open road adventure there’s no way I could not put it in here. From the scoring, to the moments we’re offered up, it all cumulates into a movie that seems like something that’s truly special.

I don’t know why these boys decide to head off on a journey that will take them across the desert of their homeland and what misadventures they get into but the trailer here depicts something not unlike the sojourn from Stand By Me. Here, too, violence seems to have some part as we see one of the boys brandishing a revolver but it appears to be more about the moments these kids will have with one another. It seems so effortless, the way in which we float from one moment to the next, but that’s the joy in finding something that really grabs your attention the way this did to me.

Finders Keepers Trailer

Bryan Carberry might not ring a whole lot of bells with people, and that’s understandable.

However, for those who remember The King of Kong and Undefeated it should, at the very least, raise an eyebrow’s worth of interest to see what the producer of those movies had to do with a leg found in a smoker that was bought at an auction. As weird as that premise is, the trailer makes this story even more outrageous once you see what happened after the purchase was made.

The temp0, the music, the story, it all spirals wildly out of control and I love it. We are whisked from moment to moment without ever needing to slow down because, the premise alone, is enough to keep at the forefront of your brain knowing this is all happening because of a human leg that was in a smoker. Bizzarre? Absolutely. Entertaining? Without question. Knowing that and realizing that the beautiful mind behind two incredible documentaries is in the mix as well? Sold and sold.

Off Label Trailer

If you haven’t already, check out October Country. Besides having one of the best trailers I’ve ever seen put together for a documentary, the movie is downright haunting and sticks with you like warm bubblegum caught on the bottom of your shoe.

Director Michael Palmieri, with October Country, didn’t reinvent the way you present a story but manged to do something even better: he found a way to make someone’s life seem like the most important story you’d ever want to listen to. This trailer makes me want to listen to these stories. It’s just as haunting for his trailer for October Country with the way it’s less interested in bombarding you with the tales of woe than it is with enveloping you in the tangential things that happen around it. The music is wonderfully chosen as it contrasts, starkly, against the things being talked about.

Whether it’s making the case for or against drugs, that part seems irrelevant, but the larger issue of the management of them, the marketing of them, the world of drug manufacturing, that seems to be what is of issue here and makes this such an interesting subject.

Accused Trailer

Jacob Thuesen has made something that’s really universal.

Apart from the ickiness of what brings us to the theme of this movie what sets this trailer apart from many others is how damn dramatic it is. Somehow it is able to capture those small moments of tension that take entire scenes to get out of an actor and it gives them to us in these quick snippets. They are dramatic, they are devastating, and they are completely effective at making you want to see how a man’s world can crumble.

Now, whether this father really did do anything to warrant the kind of treatment he gets from his family, the cops, the community, that’s thankfully unclear but whether this is an articulate liar or someone who really has been caught into something that any one of us could fall prey to with the simple act of an accusation it doesn’t take anything away from the powder keg which is this trailer. I appreciate the artistry in going from close knit family to all out war in a matter of moments without it ever seeming false or rushed. We take our time to get there and when things start to spiral out of control they do so spectacularly. I like how vague and opaque the truth seems to be and where we end up, I particularly like the ending as it puts a nice bow on it, so this is one I am going to try and not miss when it comes out if only to see who is telling the truth.

Nota bene: If you have any suggestions of trailers to possibly be included in this column, even have a trailer of your own to pitch, please let me know by sending me a note at Christopher_Stipp@yahoo.com or look me up via Twitter at @Stipp

In case you missed them, here are the other trailers we covered at /Film this week:

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