SPOILER ALERT: The Japanese Trailer for Watchmen(or WOTCHMENRU, as I believe it is being distributed) totally spoilers the ending. Moreso than the American trailer.
Theory: Japanese culture is uniquely awesome because it is at once instantly appealing but fundamentally incomprehensible to Western audiences. A good example of this paradox is the new Japanese Watchmen trailer, presumably cut to appeal to specifically Japanese sensibilities. And it's BONKERS. Still, had I not read Watchmen, this trailer presents a movie I would actively want to see, a quality I think is lacking in the American campaign.
If you read any other nerd movie blogs you've probably seen it already, but did you really SEE it? Reactions and observations after the jump....
0:06...Starting out with the Zapruder Footage?! Okay, you've got my attention!
0:11...Positively zany Nixon make-up. He will be back later.
0:13...Castro! Does he know he's in this movie?
0:41...Whip crack SFX over Silk Spectre flipping her hair around? Why not?
0:43...Note that the Knot Top gang have fu-manchu mustaches and look vaguely samurai-esque on film. Maybe that's why they're featured here.
0:49...YES! Dan Dreiberg looking old, fat and ugly! This is what Warner Brothers (Fox?) DOESN'T want you to see, America!
0:54...More Nixon in what appears to be a deliberate Dr. Strangelove reference.
0:58...The most grisly part of the Zapruder footage...I half expecting the cam to zoom in on Doctor Manhattan in the background NOT DOING ANYTHING.
1:12...More Nixon in the War Room. These are invented scenes! No Panel To Panel comparisons here. Kind of exciting!
1:18..."I say when doomsday is approaching!" This is so cheesy and hilarious. Why do the Japanese love/hate Nixon so much?
1:24...YES. DIES IRES! For overly dramatic trailer music, this is second only to Camina Burana.
1:36...This kind of vaporization probably carries a slightly different weight in Japan.
1:46..Spoiler Alert! New York gets blowed up!
Okay, so Albo has pointed out to me that you see the New York vaporization in the American trailer too...but they don't DWELL on it like that! Plus here you see that things are actually being decimated - the American shot just looks like an electric pulse that kinda chips up some buildings.
Let us question why the Japanese market is being sold this movie with an eye towards American political history. Was Frost/Nixon a really big hit in Tokyo?
In all seriousness, it seems that Watchmen is being billed in Japan not as a Superhero Movie, but as a Disaster Movie. I think you'll find this trailer shares it's advertising strategies with movies like The Day After Tomorrow and Deep Impact. Disaster movie trailers make a big deal about ticking clocks and panicked governments, and make no attempt to hide their money shots of destruction, because that's the point of the whole thing. So in the Japanese Market, is the Watchmen fundamentally a movie about the atomic bomb? About nuclear paranoia? Seeing as the Japanese had an ACTUAL atomic bomb dropped on two of their cities by a certain North American country, perhaps they are more interested in the dramatic possibilities of a story where that same North American country gets blown up itself than a story about a bunch of dudes in rubber suits?
I'm just theorizing. Either way, I'm now more genuinely interested in seeing The Watchmen. But enough about me; what do yall make of this thing?