Wednesday, April 27, 2011

X-Men: First Class gets another solid trailer.

With Fast Five unofficially starting the summer in just under 48 hours, we should expect to see a deluge of major trailers over the next couple days. First out of the gate is a longer, more plot-centric trailer for 20th Century Fox's X-Men: First Class. And once again, Fox is shrewdly selling this as a low-key, character and story-driven alternative to the more razzle-dazzle entries this summer. This will still be a pretty tough sell. Much of the appeal of the original X-Men movies rested on selling the most popular characters, the ones that casual moviegoers may have remembered from the 90s Fox cartoon and/or the Konami arcade game. They also depended on the audience-pleasing super-heroics from Wolverine and the comparative all-star cast (Patrick Stewart, Halle Berry, etc). Without those core elements and stuck with a cast of less visually-dynamic superheros, Fox is selling story-story-story. I don't know what this picture cost, but if it was significantly cheaper than at least the last couple X-Men pictures then Fox should be fine. There is little chance that X-Men: First Class will win the comic book-movie box office war of summer 2011. But with its sharp cast, intriguing real-world narrative and an emphasis on tone over spectacle, it is clearly the front runner to win the critical battle.

Scott Mendelson

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