The arena of movie marketing is fickle. Teaser trailers can make or break an audience’s perception of a film. In the case of Ben Stiller’s The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, the marketing team has captured something wonderful with the song “Dirty Paws” by Of Monsters and Men and the beautiful cinematography of the film. This breathtaking teaser doesn’t give us much to work with on plot, but it does an incredible job at inviting us into the world of Walter Mitty visually. Check it out after the break.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is adapted from a 1939 short story by James Thurbar, best known for his cartoons in The New Yorker. It was originally adapted to film in 1947, directed by Norman Z. McLeod and starring Danny Kaye as Walter Mitty. Ben Stiller is now our Mitty with the love conquest, Cheryl Melhoff, played by Kristen Wiig. Although the journey of Stiller’s Walter is significantly different than its predecessors, the concept is the same.
As an introduction to The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, this teaser trailer works on many levels and without the use of any dialogue – well some anyways. The song “Dirty Paws” compliments the imagery of the trailer so well that your eyes create the story in your mind and words become unnecessary. It’s beautiful really. In the trailer we see various iterations of Walter’s daydreams that skew our perception of what’s real and what’s fantasy, which makes the composition and editing of this trailer all the more powerful.
Ben Stiller has been known for more of his comedic direction (Tropic Thunder; The Cable Guy; Zoolander), and Walter Mitty feels like a brilliant move for the 48-year old actor/director. I can’t say whether or not this film will do absolute gangbusters based on this teaser alone because it is too vague, but it will definitely gain the attention of moviegoers come this Christmas.
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Since the teaser has very, very little dialogue, here is the official plot synopsis for The Secret World of Walter Mitty courtesy of IMDb.com:
A day-dreamer escapes his anonymous life by disappearing into a world of fantasies filled with heroism, romance and action. When his job along with that of his co-worker are threatened, he takes action in the real world embarking on a global journey that turns into an adventure more extraordinary than anything he could have ever imagined.
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