Let me guess, you were completely surprised to wake up this morning and find a teaser trailer for Fantastic Four. In fact, I’m willing to bet most of you didn’t even know there was a new Fantastic Four movie in development. Well as per the Fox/Marvel movie arrangement, if one of the rented movie properties goes unused for a certain amount of time, it returns to Marvel. Once you know that, then everything that follows in this trailer makes a lot more sense.
So despite this movie filming for a while, we’ve had almost no updates or promoted images for it like we did for Avengers, Ant-Man, Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice, etc. The most we got was one leaked image of the new Doctor Doom who looked like an old lady wrapped in a trash bag – not even kidding. All traces of that were then removed thanks to threats by Fox; but it was enough to already start rumors of why this film wasn’t being promoted along the way like other Superhero films. Were updates about this film slowed due to Fox not knowing how to market this film or was it because this film looked SO awful that they’d rather not acknowledge it?
This is only the first teaser trailer, so I can’t in good faith talk about the quality of the film itself. That being said, judging by the framing of the trailer and overall style and story, this looks more Sci-Fi than superhero – yes there is a difference. Let me explain, watch the trailer – REALLY watch it. In the several instances where you see a ‘hero’, it could just as easily be explained as something else. Yes Johnny Storm/The Human Torch (Michael B Jordan) lights up; but there’s no “Flame On” shouted or even a conscious attempt to make the transformation look natural. It could just as easily be that someone set him on fire in that moment – like how Scarecrow lit Batman up in Batman Begins.
Additionally, we see Benn Grimm/The Thing (Jamie Bell) burst out of some rock-like cocoon; but again with no sustained shot or iconic catch phrase, it could just as easily make that a rock breaking. We even see what appears to be Sue Storm/The Invisible Woman (Kate Mara) projecting a force field; yet we don’t see her and it could just be a high tech machine produced force field. As for Reed Richards/Mr Fantastic (Miles Teller) stretching his arm towards the end, that’s just hinted at. The trailer ends before anything extends past a regular reach.
Needless to say this trailer doesn’t look like DC, Marvel’s, Sony’s or any of Fox’s other superhero film trailer, which to be fair isn’t a bad thing. What makes this teaser bad is that it makes this film looks more like a strange mix of Interstellar and some Hunger Games/ Divergent/ post-apocalyptic teen drama-esque film. Yes, a good superhero movie takes aspects of other movie genres and repurposes them by adding heroes; but those films all have iconic imagery and emotions to evoke. This teaser trailer has none of that, and what little there could be is quickly cast aside with plausible deniability. Aside from the title cue cards and awkwardly positioned ending group shot, there is nothing in this trailer to really make this Fantastic Four.
Again, this just looks like a random Interstellar/Divergent teen fusion film with the Fantastic Four pasted in so Fox doesn’t have to give the rights back to Marvel. Additionally, the amount of times that they have to remind the viewers that this is “From the studio that brought you X-Men: Days Of Future Past” is a little over the top. But again, nothing in this trailer truly screams “superhero” film. Could be a great movie; but take out final dark shot and Fantastic Four logo, and this film could be anything else. I greatly respect the creative liberties taken; but this doesn’t seem Fantastic Four-ish.
Things will probably only get worse once they acknowledge that Dr Doom – one of the most powerful and feared villains in all of the Marvel Universe – is just a blogger. Wait, does that mean this panda could be Doctor Doom? If so, I’d like to be a part of a different movie. Fantastic Four hits theaters August 7th and – unless something drastic changes – is nowhere on my ‘to-see’ list. Never thought I’d say this; but I miss Fantastic Four 2: Rise Of The Silver Surfer. AGAIN, could be a fantastic film – but right now it just doesn’t seem like a Fantastic Four film.