My expectations for this trailer were so high to the point where I felt worried about being let down by it in the end. Thankfully James Wan really blew it out of the water with this trailer (pun intended). This 2 and a half minute trailer was enough to satisfy fans like me who have been waiting for an Aquaman movie for years.
During the promotion run for this trailer people who visited the set compared this film to blockbusters such as Star Wars, Blade Runner and Lord of the Rings. And we saw all of these influences in the trailer. I’ve seen people complain about the use of CGI in this film and it blows my mind. Of course, this film would need to heavily rely on CGI, 2/3’s of the film is going to be underwater after all. I don’t think people understand how hard it is to make a live action underwater film look realistic. And to be honest they haven’t gone down the realistic route with this film. They have fully embraced that this is a comic book movie which pulls from multiple genres such as sci-fi and adventure. Visually the trailer is stunning and Atlantis looks even better than it did on the comic pages. There are some shots where the CGI looks choppy but that’s to be expected at this early stage. James Wan and his VFX team still have several months to perfect these shots.
As for the plot I love how Arthur is seen as an outsider now because he grew up on the surface, almost fully embracing his human side. The story of him coming home after Orm has taken over goes with the movie’s tagline “Home is calling“. It just shows that no matter how much time he spends on the surface world Atlantis is still his true home and I think we’ll see him struggle with the responsibilities he has on both the surface and underwater. Orm already looks like he’s going to be a General Zod level main villain. Patrick Wilson was a great choice for Orm and he has been provided with a really interesting character who will be a great match for Arthur and even someone we could sympathise with at points during the film given his motivations. The climax of the film looks to be an epic battle between Orm and Arthur involving their opposing armies and once again the visuals of the war scenes look amazing. My personal highlight from the trailer is finally getting to see a live action version of Black Manta. The suit looks incredible and Yahya looks great without the helmet on too. I felt like we didn’t get to see enough of him but that’s understandable since Orm is the main villain and Black Manta is being built up to star in multiple movies.
Overall I loved the trailer and it was the perfect appetiser for what’s to come in this underwater adventure. Remember this was only the first trailer, there’s still so much that we haven’t seen yet.