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Analysis of "vantage Point" Trailer

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Analysis of a film trailer - "Vantage Point"

The pre-release trailer for the film Vantage Point (Pete Travis, 2008) is one that tends to use customary styles and techniques in order to achieve its purpose of encouraging audiences to go out and see the film.

Original Film, who have previously produced such financially successful blockbusters as I Am Legend and The Fast and the Furious films, have opted to stick to traditional blockbuster values when producing the trailer for this film. From the very first sequence of the trailer we can clearly see that it uses pulsing images time to perfection with heartbeat-style music to build tension and immerse the audience within the situation.

This ties in with the thriller genre of the film and it appears to do barely anything to subvert or alter this genre in any way. Through the build-up of tension and the use of big name actors it is the thriller genre at its best especially with the well timed calm and then chaotic moments of the trailer.

As the audience are positioned almost as a detective working on the case featured in the trailer (the attempted assassination of the president) we seem to be asked to pick up pieces of information from the several 'strangers' offered to us, “think you've seen it all, look again” is the tagline used that seems to place the audience in a movie version of the 'Cluedo' board game. It is plain to see that it is aimed at males due to the constant appearance of archetypal masculine subjects such as guns, car crashes and explosions. Suffice to say that this trailer does nothing to dispel any stereotypes.

Once the trailer progresses we are subject to a rare moment of calm upon when the president is shot, highlighting this a major turning point of the trailer. The pulsating music that preceded it fades to a lonely gun shot sound emphasising this as the 'disruption' of the film in accordance with Todorov's narrative structure theory. The crowd gathering at the beginning waiting for the President to speak can also be labelled as the equilibrium whereas there is no real resolution to the trailer seeing as this would reveal the plot line. However the title at the close could be construed as some kind of partial resolution due to it tying up the trailer and thus has fulfilled its purpose of introducing the audience to the film.

Throughout, Pete Travis has used the current theme of terrorism and fear to engage the audience within the film. Through using many television news broadcasts it relates to images of disasters such as 9/11 and will undoubtedly bring these images up in the minds of audience members. I feel that this appeals to the audience through the surveillance category of the Uses and Gratifications model. As the current media climate is injecting fear of terrorists into the public they will most likely be scared of any attack on the President of America so the effect of using an event such as the attempted assassination of such a person is that it will remind the viewers of current events and encourage them to see the film because they feel the greater their knowledge, the safer they feel.

The countdown at the beginning of the trailer also contributes to this as it gives a serious, government side to the trailer and also satisfies any voyeuristic tendencies the audience may harbour within themselves as it shows a newscaster before she goes on-air. It also begins the build up of tension within the trailer.

Travis has selected several short clips and has used soundbridges to give a very chaotic view of the film. The effect of this is that it helps the film to look very content filled, as if there is always something exciting happening and new developments taking place just as a good thriller should. The director has selected to include only stimulating clips

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