Trailer Reaction: A Wrinkle In Time

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The first teaser trailer for A Wrinkle In Time is here!

I was eager to see the first trailer for Disney’s A Wrinkle in Time, the movie based on one of my childhood faves by Madeleine L’Engle. The book is the type of weird, wonderful science fiction that’s strikes me as difficult to translate into film, but I thought that it was in good hands with Ava DuVernay and all the acting talent attached to this project. So when I settled in to watch the first trailer, I was ready to be mega excited. At the same time, the difficulty of translating this type of story to film and Disney’s last terrible A Wrinkle In Time movie made me a bit wary.

But after watching the teaser trailer, I feel very meh. The good news is that there aren’t any major red flags. All the snippets that we are given feel like they could come from a good movie. I think the problem is the trailer itself. These scenes might belong in a good movie, but I don’t understand how the people who made this trailer thought that putting these scenes together in this order would make a good trailer.

There’s very little of Meg Murray (the main character) in this trailer — she gets one line and she otherwise mostly stands around. In fact, there’s very little of the kids at all – Charles Wallace and Calvin don’t get any lines. The kids’ stories or conflicts aren’t really set up here. Instead, it feels like whoever made the trailer was eager to show off the number of famous adults who are in this film. I can certainly understand this impulse, but I think that the trailer suffers for it.  A good portion of the trailer is made up of Chris Pine saying philosophical sounding things. This probably constitutes a fine scene in the movie itself, but it doesn’t really do much for this teaser.

I think that someone who wasn’t familiar with the source material might have a difficult time parsing what this movie is about. At the same time, there aren’t many obvious nods to the books that might get established fans excited. The one exception to this is the creepy suburban scene at the end which I think is easily the strongest thing that we see in this trailer. This was an iconic scene from the book and it looks like the movie got it just right.

I also have to say that I’m not a huge fan of choosing the song “Sweet Dreams” to promote this movie. The book and probably the movie as well have such an “out there” vibe that I think that juxtaposing them with a famous pop song (even a pop song as surreal as “Sweet Dreams”) has the effect of making the world feel too familiar. The trailer should be getting people ready to go on an unbelievable adventure, not reminding them of eighties songs.

Anyway, I’m still cautiously optimistic about A Wrinkle In Time, but this teaser trailer isn’t doing much for it.  I’m hoping that this is because the people who made the trailer were a little too focused on showing us that Oprah and Chris Pine are in this movie and not because the movie itself is of poor quality. Hopefully, future marketing for A Wrinkle In Time will give us a little something more to get excited about. I’m still looking forward to the long trailer.

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