At about 6 AM EST this morning, the full-length trailer for Super 8 was released exclusively to Twitter. The anxiously awaited collaboration between J.J. Abrams (writer/director) and Steven Spielberg (Yoda) previewed a teaser trailer during the Super Bowl, which looked kind of awesome but still left us going “Whoa, okay...so...what’s it about?”
Along with the new trailer came the first official synopsis:
“In the summer of 1979, a group of friends in a small Ohio town witness a catastrophic train crash while making a super 8 movie and soon suspect that it was not an accident. Shortly after, unusual disappearances and inexplicable events begin to take place in town, and the local Deputy tries to uncover the truth—something more terrifying than any of them could have imagined.”
Which tells us, content-wise, what we just saw. Formally, Abrams and his design team have—at least in this extended glimpse—created a near-perfect mid-70s Middle America. It feels absolutely right. Everything does: the acting looks sincere, the relationships vivid and palpable, and the effects, rather than being there for their own sake, serve a purpose and evoke genuine awe.
This is, of course, merely an initial reaction. The skill with which this trailer was assembled may be causing excessive extrapolation (one cannot, for instance, actually tell the acting’s good for the whole movie from a two- or three-minute trailer), but it is a wonderfully successful trailer. I’m sitting here like “What the hell is in the train...? It’s kidnapping all the dogs...? Wait. When does this picture come out? JUNE??? DUDE I CAN’T WAIT THAT LONG! DAMN YOU, ABRAMS!”
If anyone—except Spielberg—can pull off making a Steven Spielberg homage and actually come close to matching him in tone and genuine wonder, it’s J.J. Abrams. And so, June 10th we shall see if he succeeds as totally as does this trailer.