Excerpted from “The Poetic Work of Trailer Recutters,” in the September 4 issue of The New Yorker
. . . On YouTube, viewable on my laptop when I should be writing or answering e-mails, there’s another spike for my cinema-addict veins: the work of the Trailer Recutters. These are would-be film editors and directors who make new trailers for classic movies. Modern (or archaic) music choices, quicker (or slower) cutting, iconic scenes and images scrambled out of sequence.
I’m not talking about the Recontextualizers, those prankish scamps who will create a trailer for “The Shining” as if it were a light comedy or for “West Side Story” as if it were a pandemic thriller. Those are delightful, but they serve a setup and a punch line outside the meaning of the film.