Self-Motivation
David Goggins
Former Navy Seal
Career Development
Bryan Cranston
Actor
Critical Thinking
Liv Boeree
International Poker Champion
Emotional Intelligence
Amaryllis Fox
Former CIA Clandestine Operative
Management
Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
Learn
from the world's big
thinkers
Start Learning

Don't watch the new X-Men (or any) trailer

So the new X-Men film trailer is out. It's being Tweeted, Facebooked; it's probably rising through the ranks of YouTube, Vimeo and so on. It's easy content for sites, a blessing of fandom tied off with a bow of brevity and recognisable brand: embed the video, write a little fangasm squee paragraph or two and watch your page hits fly. 


But how about we stop watching trailers altogether?

These stupid little flashes designed to titillate have long been the bane of expectations for all our media (though obviously good for the makers of said media): Consider the genius trailer of Prometheuswith that epic creepy looping siren, and the subsequent awful film that unfolded. It's like getting an amazingly beautiful can that delivers a bigger pile of bullshit. 

It’s easy to find crappy films with amazing trailers. But good films are good not because of their trailers, though obviously it helps to make people interested.

What, however, are we supposed to do with trailers?

They’re not the film, so they can’t give away the story. However, some trailers do show us all the best parts (say, the funny bits in a comedy) or reveal twists inadvertently that, presumably, we’d rather not see. Thus making the trailer bad for both viewer (assuming she wants to watch the film) and maker, since people now won’t pay to see what they already know.

So trailers need to excite us without stealing too much from the film.

However, nowadays we have various ways of obtaining info thanks to knowing release dates of upcoming films, reading Rotten Tomatoes summaries, or having more than one friend.

This doesn’t undermine the point that trailers are an artform when done right. That Prometheus trailer is many times better than the film it advertises.

But if it doesn’t work for good films – since we want to watch said films, we have better ways of obtaining information, we’d already watch it despite the trailer, etc. – and it doesn’t work for bad films – why would we care about the trailer when we hate what we know about the film – then why should we bother watching and spreading trailers at all?

So, don’t watch the new X-Men trailer. Or any trailer. Go watch the damn film.

Image Credit: WikiPedia (source)

Live tomorrow! Unfiltered lessons of a female entrepreneur

Join Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and best-selling author Charles Duhigg as he interviews Victoria Montgomery Brown, co-founder and CEO of Big Think, live at 1pm EDT tomorrow.

Two MIT students just solved Richard Feynman’s famed physics puzzle

Richard Feynman once asked a silly question. Two MIT students just answered it.

Surprising Science

Here's a fun experiment to try. Go to your pantry and see if you have a box of spaghetti. If you do, take out a noodle. Grab both ends of it and bend it until it breaks in half. How many pieces did it break into? If you got two large pieces and at least one small piece you're not alone.

Keep reading Show less

Improving Olympic performance with asthma drugs?

A study looks at the performance benefits delivered by asthma drugs when they're taken by athletes who don't have asthma.

Image source: sumroeng chinnapan/Shutterstock
Culture & Religion
  • One on hand, the most common health condition among Olympic athletes is asthma. On the other, asthmatic athletes regularly outperform their non-asthmatic counterparts.
  • A new study assesses the performance-enhancement effects of asthma medication for non-asthmatics.
  • The analysis looks at the effects of both allowed and banned asthma medications.

Keep reading Show less

Weird science shows unseemly way beetles escape after being eaten

Certain water beetles can escape from frogs after being consumed.

R. attenuata escaping from a black-spotted pond frog.

Surprising Science
  • A Japanese scientist shows that some beetles can wiggle out of frog's butts after being eaten whole.
  • The research suggests the beetle can get out in as little as 7 minutes.
  • Most of the beetles swallowed in the experiment survived with no complications after being excreted.
Keep reading Show less
Mind & Brain

Why are we fascinated by true crime stories?

Several experts have weighed in on our sometimes morbid curiosity and fascination with true crime.

Scroll down to load more…
Quantcast