Now that "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter" has been deemed rotten by critics at Rotten Tomatoes (a big surprise if ever there was one), the pressure has been lessened in the competition with Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln," set for release by the end of the year.
Initially in the abstract, "Vampire Hunter" sounded like a premise that could have potentially made "Lincoln" look like a staid, hardback history book. But serious is as serious does, if you go by the critics thinking "Vampire Hunter" took itself a little too seriously.
There seems to be some indication that Spielberg perhaps took the above film a little too seriously in overshadowing his serious Lincoln biopic. Whether that's true or not, we have yet to see a preview trailer for "Lincoln," which is a little unusual considering we've already seen significant previews for other films coming out as late as December.
It's possible Spielberg wanted to wait until the fervor of "Vampire Hunter" died down before giving us a trailer suitable for blowing us away.
Let's encourage another trailer coddling our excitement, because we've seen at least three compelling ones so far that show us late 2012 may end up being another 1939 or 1980. Having a "Lincoln" trailer as awe-inspiring as the preview trailer for "Les Miserables" gives potential for next Oscar season to be one of drawing straws on which film is the greatest. A thought like that is one you can't imagine in the times we're living in, though we know the talent still exists to make it happen.
If the "Lincoln" trailer has any sense, it should show us exactly what's in the film rather than giving a deceptive marketing pull (as "Vampire Hunter" did). When we saw the stylish trailer for the horror-action flick earlier this year, the narrating voice of Johnny Cash brought a haunting charm to the point of wishing this Lincoln would have a similar vocal cadence. Wisely, the actor who would be Lincoln's voice didn't make an appearance; star Benjamin Walker's voice is considerably ordinary in comparison.
Conversely, Daniel Day-Lewis has what you call a true actor's voice, one suitable for piercing the heartstrings of women and men alike. That voice is also very malleable, if you go by his John Huston vocal impersonation in "There Will Be Blood." Hearing Day-Lewis's voice as Lincoln is going to be one of the most anticipated moments of the year once the trailer arrives.
Of course, the question remains: When will the preview clip arrive? The later it gets into summer, the less likely large amounts of people will be in a theater seat for the biopic, especially if the trailer shows up during August's dog days. Considering many preview trailers arrive without much warning, maybe we'll see it around the July 4 holiday to tie in with our celebration of Americana.
You can be sure that whenever it arrives, the "Lincoln" trailer will create as many stirs as have the trailers for "Les Miserables," "The Great Gatsby," and "Anna Karenina." Spielberg's trailers have always been expertly put together, and this film is a potential comeback to the golden steps of Oscar. Careful editing to assure a compelling and sustained memory of its images may be the real reason for delay.
The only problem will be doing a side-by-side comparison with the "Les Miserables" trailer to see which clip simultaneously tears your heart out and inspires you more.
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