Well OK, maybe not, but I have a big problem with trailers in general. They all seem to be edited to market to teenagers – no matter what kind of film it is. I have missed seeing many a good movie because the trailer made it look completely stupid. Basically I think most trailers suck as a rule. Fortunately there are some exceptions…
I was recently dragged to see Sin City* in the theater. Its only saving grace was that it was preceded by the trailer for the upcoming Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. The Hitchhiker’s trailer expresses the sarcastic sensibility of the book by making fun of trailers while simultaneously telling us a good bit about the movie. The entire thing is presented as an entry on “trailers” from The Guide. It is the perfect trailer for this movie.
Casting Mos Def as Ford Prefect threw me off at first, but it actually makes sense. The book (as I recall, having read it about 20 years ago) doesn’t specify Ford’s race, but it makes it quite clear that he is attempting and failing to pass for a “normal” Englishman while in fact being from another planet. The idea of feeling “alien” is a reoccurring theme in black art, see Sun Ra, George Clinton, etc. So the symbolism is quite apt.
* See Brian’s blog for why he thinks Sin City is an important mirror on American culture. I thought it was artistically innovative and very effective at re-creating the illustrator’s look in a different medium, but all that only entertained me for the first 20 minutes. Then I was bored.