I never watch a trailer until after I've seen the movie. Then I compare them. Let's find out if what we see is what we get. (There will be spoilers.) The Vow Starring: Channing Tatum, Rachel McAdams, Sam Neill and Jessica Lange
Movie: My former hometown of Chicago is highlighted immediately, including the Music Box theater where I saw Casablanca for the very first time. Leo (Tatum) and Paige (McAdams) almost immediately get into a snowy car accident. There is no dilling or dalling. I sincerely thought she was dead. Quickly, I imagined the rest of the film would be flashbacks and hoping Leo, (Tatum) the meat head, would learn to love again. I was proven wrong shortly after and realized I was sitting down to an amnesia film. Paige forgets who Leo is and can't understand why she left her family and law school behind to pursue art. Paige doesn't put much effort into reclaiming her life with Leo, instead falling back on the comfort of the past. Leo puts in a little effort here and there, but also has to focus on his recording studio. Paige's parents (Neill and Lange) are desperate to keep Paige close. Her ex-fiance wouldn't mind another crack either. Even though they vowed nothing would ever come between them, Leo and Paige give up. Paige finally realizes the family hasn't (re)told her that one of her friends had an affair with her dad. This sends Paige back to art, yet she promises her family she won't abandon them again. A few months later, Paige tracks down Leo and they try to have another shot at love.
Trailer: They vow. Now you know where they got the film's title (insert sigh of relief here). That Tatum narration you hear is also in the film, though mainly in the beginning. Gosh, aren't they cute together? But then amnesia hits and Leo must do everything in his power to get his wife to fall for him all over again. I do love when Leo says, "No matter what challenges might carry us apart," he's decking a guy. Yes Leo, punches people might be a challenge. During all of this, the trailer wants to make sure you know what you're dealing with ... Valentine's Day, "The Notebook" and "Dear John." Forget what may or may not happen in the film, just remember those other movies and buy your tickets!
Trailer Truth: Wow, where's the family? Where's the art? It's quite surprising we don't see Neill or Lange in this trailer. There is more heartfelt strain and desperation with Leo in the trailer than I felt in the film. Perhaps that is due to the rushed timing of a two-minute trailer, but I think it has more to do with the film's effort. While I would feel sorry for an amnesia victim, it's hard to feel bad for one who doesn't feel like trying. The trailer gives the impression you might need a tissue because of these two, but the film never gets close to a tear-jerking moment. The trailer never touches on the idea of Paige going back to a safety net. The film is rarely about the two of them trying to fall in love again. The film isn't captured in this trailer.