A haunting realism at sea.
Sometimes a trailer comes along that is so abstract that you can’t help but be mesmerized by it. That is how I felt about the trailer for Leviathan. With nothing but the sounds of the fisherman’s sea as its soundtrack and the abstract images above and below the ocean from the POV of the ships that fish those waters, you can’t help but be in awe of this trailer.
The trailer opens with a piece of copy letting you know that you are about to be taken on a journey into some of the most popular fishing waters on the planet and from there you are taken on an obscure journey into this world. Like most abstract pieces of video, you can’t help but notice the meticulous craft and thought behind the sound scape and imagery of this trailer, clearly done by a master of the editorial. And, the only words that are shown are the accolades reaffirming that what you are seeing is nothing short of visual bliss.
What struck me most about this trailer was the contrast between beautiful imagery as well as the images of death and horror. A beautiful shot of seagulls flying above, while the camera plunges in and out of the water giving the viewer the sensation of drowning. Dead fish floating in the cargo area, followed by their blood being dumped into the sea. We are given glimpses of the crew who never seem all that happy to be there, but continue to carry on. And a scene at 1:20 into the trailer we are greeted by the frightening shrieks of unrecognizable large fish that we pass by, like an at sea Paranormal Activity. The trailer crescendos as the imagery speeds up and the sounds of the ships and underwater sounds of the sea get quicker and more intense. You aren’t really sure what is happening, but you feel the raw intensity of being on that boat and helplessness of being out at sea, but are never given enough information to really understand what is happening. Normally this would irritate me, but in this case it just made this piece all that more powerful.
This is one of those trailers where I am not sure what this movie is going to deliver as an hour and a half documentary, but I can say with certainty that this trailer was a work of art. From a visual and sound perspective, this trailer sucked me in hook, line and sinker (pun intended). Raw and pure. I love every second. But, I think my friend Matt said it best, “Before I realized it was a documentary, I actually thought it was a Lovecraft-inspired horror film…”