Halloween is right around the corner, and I've gotta say, I'm impressed.
After 2020, Hollywood still managed to scare me this week. Monsters were living in cell phones. There were killer babysitters, two cults—one real, one fake—a zombie apocalypse, haunted houses, four Blumhouse originals, and a documentary discussing how social media eats our brains, from the folks who created it.
It wasn't all horror. We also traveled to Paris and to the 1970s music scene and the Carter White House. We visited Reagan, too, as well as a chess prodigy driving herself along the highway to madness.
Never a dull moment in entertainment marketing. Here are some of the latest trailers and posters.
Trailer Agency: Inside Job
Poster Agency: BOND
When a young boy with autism has trouble making friends, he finds solace in his cell phone and tablet. Things take a turn for the terrifying when his devices attract an otherworldly creature who's desperate for the boy's friendship and will stop at nothing to attain it. The trailer will have you jumping from your seat. Most notable is the use of music and sound design, which heightens the intensity at every frame. Check out the poster design as well. I love the color scheme and the way the monster emerges from the darkness. Come Play this Halloween.
The Social Dilemma
Trailer Agency: Mark Woollen & Associates
Poster Agency: Canyon Design Group
Ever wonder what effect sharing, likes, tweets and other social media tactics are having on our society? Some of the top minds from Silicon Valley are ready to divulge that secret. The trailer for The Social Dilemma is unique in its approach, incorporating interviews, news clippings, scripted footage and animated clips to tell the story. The trailer feels overstimulating at moments, much like social media itself. What's also great is the music choice, "I Put a Spell on You," which seems appropriate when it comes to social media in our society. Check out the poster, cleverly designed as a cell phone and social post with an all-too-real caption. Dive into The Social Dilemma on Sept. 9.
Jimmy Carter: Rock & Roll President
Trailer Agency: Zealot
Poster Agency: Frost Foundry
Jimmy Carter was more than just the president of the United States. He was also a fan of rock 'n' roll. This new documentary looks back at the 39th president and his ability to connect with musicians and how it ultimately drew him closer to the American people. The trailer is enlightening and entertaining with its incorporation of historical footage and interviews—with Carter himself and his musical buddies including Bob Dylan, Woody Nelson and Garth Brooks. Check out the rockin' poster—a historical photo mixed with bold red, white and blue type. Get to know Jimmy Carter: Rock & Roll President on Sept. 9.
The Walking Dead: World Beyond
Trailer Agency: MOCEAN
In the teaser for The Walking Dead: World Beyond, we meet the next generation. They're the first to come of age post-apocalypse. The special-shoot teaser juxtaposes zombies and destruction with youthfulness. Doodle marks appear over the visuals throughout the teaser, reinforcing the feeling of adolescence. The Walking Dead: World Beyond premieres Oct. 4.
Trailer Agency: JAX
Meet NXIVM, a group selling positivity and personal growth, and whose leader, whom they call Vanguard, brainwashed women to starve themselves, serve as sexual slaves, and be branded with his initials. The trailer sells you. It's inviting and relatable and then disillusions you with twisted devotion. The music, a remix of Major Lazer's "Get Free," blazingly emphasizes the story's emotional intensity. I'm two episodes deep and entranced by the series—new episodes air Sundays on HBO.
Emily in Paris
Trailer Agency: Buddha Jones
From sitcom master Darren Star comes Emily in Paris, a series about a rising marketing hotshot who leaves America to join her company's Paris office. The tastes of humor, upbeat music and graceful graphics make for a delightful trailer. Plus, it feels like the perfect antidote to our halted wanderlust. Emily goes to Paris on Oct. 2.
The Queen's Gambit
Trailer Agency: Netflix Creative Studio
Based on the novel, The Queen's Gambit follows a chess prodigy's personal struggles as she attempts to become a grandmaster. The date announcement teaser is stylish in technique, between its dueling screen edits and flipbook-like cuts. Plus, the sound design adds a creative pulse to the piece. See The Queen's Gambit on Oct. 23.
Call of Duty: Blacks Ops Cold War
Trailer Agency: GNET
Call of Duty is going back to the Reagan era and the Cold War. The trailer for the latest mission is mesmerizing. It combines historical footage with gameplay and introduces a spot-on CGI version of President Regan. It's energetic and entertaining with its musical choices to represent the changing times, including Creedence Clearwater Revival and New Order's "Blue Monday." Get Call of Duty: Blacks Ops Cold War on Nov. 13.
The Babysitter: Killer Queen
Trailer Agency: Big Picture
Poster Agency: Cold Open
Two years after destroying his babysitter's killer cult, a teen must defeat their ghosts, who've returned with a vengeance. The trailer for The Babysitter: Killer Queen is as wild as the concept itself—it's fun, graphic and teenage horror at its campiest. The bold graphics and music pep up the energy, ensuring this is one rally you don't want to miss. The poster's bright colors and character illustrations capture your attention and refuse to let go. The cult returns Sept. 10.
Welcome to the Blumhouse
Trailer Agency: Tiny Hero
Poster Agency: LA
Trick or treat, indeed! Amazon Studios isn't just giving out one Blumhouse horror flick this October, but four! The trailer for Welcome to the Blumhouse gives a frightening glimpse of what's to come. The editing seizes the horror of each story and builds upon the terror by amplifying the sound design. Also, the cover of 4 Non Blondes' "What's Up" by Fjøra, is killer. The poster captivates through its unique dollhouse-esque design, giving a peek inside each story. Welcome to the Blumhouse kicks off Oct. 6.
The Haunting of Bly Manor
Trailer Agency: Trailer Park Group
Poster Agency: Cold Open
From the creators of The Haunting of Hill House comes the next chapter in the anthology series. Venture to Bly Manor and discover the story of a young governess charged with looking after two children in a house with many souls. The teaser's eerie music makes your heart penetrate deeper with every cut. They offer just enough story and scares to make you anxiously await the Oct. 9 premiere. Take your time with the striking yet unassuming poster. Terror lies in every crevice.