Growing up, one of my favorite bedtime stories was Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day – Judith Viorst’s cheery tale about those bad days you just can’t seem to beat. While the book has been around since 1972, the only screen option it received was a 1990 animated musical that aired on HBO, but that’s going to change this year thanks to Walt Disney Pictures. Directed by Miguel Arteta (Youth In Revolt/Ceder Rapids), Ed Oxenbould stars as down-on-his-luck Alexander in the upcoming live-action adaptation of one of my fondest childhood memories.
Released today is the first trailer for Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, and with it comes some surprises for fans of the source material. We meet Alexander, tripping over sprinklers and setting classrooms on fire, but we also meet his perfect family played by Dylan Minnette, Steve Carell, Jennifer Garner, and Bella Thorne – people happy with their perfect lives. Where the book is about Alexander’s bad day, and his mother’s comforting words about even people in Australia having to suffer through crumby days now and then, the film is about how Alexander’s family all experience the worst day of their lives on the same exact date – and how Alexander brings them all together.
Expanding the film’s universe is a smart decision, because a day in the life of an unlucky child can only get you so far. Introducing Alexander’s family into the mix, we’re prepped for numerous heartfelt conversations depicting a small boy’s enlightened view on life, guiding family members through their own no good, terrible – well you get the point.
While the trailer sports many goofy gags, including Carell wearing a pirate shirt, an escaped kangaroo, a cleverly inserted verbal hashtag, and a license test gone wrong, I couldn’t help but ignore an overly childish vibe. The trailer feels less like a Disney production and more like recent Nickelodeon movies, seeming overly juvenile and a tad, well, lame – possibly perfect for young viewers, but valueless for older audiences. This could be completely wrong, as I’m just judging a trailer, but something just feels off. I’m hoping my initial judgement is wrong, because everyone loves to see their favorite nostalgic memories recreated on screen.
Fans will have to wait a little bit to see Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, as it opens on October 10th. In the meantime, be sure to check out the first trailer below!
Source: The Film Stage