I don’t think I’ve ever seen a trailer so brutally knee-cap the movie it’s marketing as quickly as the first preview for rom-com The Longest Week, which hit the web today, just has. On paper, the premise sounds fun – Jason Bateman and Billy Crudup play affluent New Yorkers who compete for the affections of a beautiful woman (Olivia Wilde). But mid-way through the trailer, the luminescent Jenny Slate comes in, presumably playing the would-be publisher of Bateman’s character’s inchoate novel, to deliver this cringeworthy piece of cynicism: “How I am supposed to care about a group of overprivileged, affluent types who go galavanting around without any sort of a moral compass?”
However, instead of answering Slate’s extremely fair question, which is one this potential viewer now also has on his mind, The Longest Week‘s trailer just goes back to its cutesy/pretentious indie background track and shots of its cast all doing their damnedest to look charming and affable. So, one has to wonder, does the distributor even want us to see The Longest Week? Or is this just a turkey that it’s sneakily trying to bury at the beginning of the fall.
With a cast including Bateman, Crudup, Wilde and Slate, it would be surprising if that latter option turns out to be correct. But we all know full well that a great lineup of stars doesn’t always equate to a great movie. And if this first trailer is any indication, The Longest Week may turn out to be remarkable only as a stunning waste of talented actors.
We’ll find out when The Longest Week opens on September 5th. I know I’ll be tempted to queue up just to have my most burning questions about this movie answered – will we end up caring about the petty romantic troubles of these affluent, sophisticated, photogenic people? Is it indeed possible that Crudup could pose any sort of romantic rival for Bateman? And why on Earth is Slate, in a supporting role, given top billing here?