I love watching trailers and sometimes find them more interesting than the films they promote:
I love the bombast in the trailer for Man in the Attic:
I like how trailers often contain the most interesting (and often the most expensive) shots in the film:
The promise trailers make of the pleasures audiences may expect (and which the films need not keep): here to be shocked and terrorised, thrilled and turned on, the combination of sex and death potently conveyed:
There is no mention that this is a story that has already been filmed several times and better (e.g. Hitchcock’s The Lodger (1927).
In trailers one also finds historical records not only of what was but what might have been, what was hoped, wished for, desired …that didn’t quite pan out. In this case the expectation or the hope that Jack Palance, already prominent due to Shane (George Stevens, 1953) and his Oscar nominated performance in Sudden Fear (David Miller, 1952) would become the great new star of tomorrow, hopefully due to Man in the Attic, the trailer promoting that potential stardom as a way of promoting the film.:
Jack Palance continued to be a name in cinema until the day he died but he never quite became the big Hollywood star this trailer promised with such certainty and a decade later he was working mainly in Europe, often in films that became classics, such as Godard’s Contempt (1963)….but in supporting roles.
A fascinating trailer for a film that holds all kinds of interest, not the least Palance’s performance. Needless to say, the film sadly doesn’t quite live up to the promises of the trailer, which can be seen in full below: