Warning: This post may contain minor SPOILERS for Ready Player One.
The final trailer for Ready Player One is here. Steven Spielberg's take on Ernest Cline's popular 2011 novel will be arriving in theaters in just a few weeks. The book, which manages to be a love letter to 1980s pop culture while being set in 2045, mostly takes place in a virtual reality wonderland known as The Oasis. It follows the story of teenager Wade Watts as he and thousands of others try to find three hidden easter eggs leading to three keys inside The Oasis in order to inherit ownership of VR world (and, therefore, the owner's fortune). That would make the winner the most powerful person in the world.
Early trailers for the movie gave a lot of focus to the story's pop culture references. Even some that were not specifically from the 80s but are connected to Spielberg himself, such as Jurassic Park, or to Warner Bros., like The Iron Giant. While the story is filled with numerous references to movies, TV shows, video games, and various other media, their use in the early trailers was confusing and muddled. So, when the trailers began to focus more on Ready Player One's characters and story, things improved greatly. And the film's final trailer is evidence of that.
Warner Bros. has released the final trailer for Ready Player One (above) just a few weeks ahead of the film's release. While there's still plenty of pop culture references - including a quote from Back to the Future, a reference to Heroes' famous slogan, and a theater marquee with a blink-and-you'll-miss-it tip of the hat to Last Action Hero - the focus is on the characters and the story.
The trailer shows details of Wade's life outside The Oasis. Starting with him climbing a vertical stack of trailers to get to the one where he lives. Handy voiceover narration by Wade fills in the audience - at least those who never read the book - about Oasis founder James Halliday and how whoever finds the three keys he hid in the nearly limitless Oasis will inherit the whole thing. Notably the narration never specifically mentions any antagonists or villains, but several shots are dedicated to Nolan Sorrento and the various avatars of IOI employees, a massive corporation who bend the rules in order to win so they can profit from The Oasis. There are also scenes of Wade interacting both in the real world and in The Oasis with Samantha/Art3mis - his competition, friend, and love interest.
There are certainly differences between the book and the movie. The fact that Wade seems to interact with Samantha in real life in this trailer is new - in the book they only have cyber communication until the very end of the story. The real life versions of the characters in the movie also look quite different than how they are described in Cline's novel. Still, Ready Player One early reactions are largely positive and this latest trailer especially shows that Spielberg did not neglect the main story in favor of focusing on easter eggs. Ready Player One might be highly entertaining for lovers of pop culture, but this trailer shows that it's not short on heart or high stakes either.
Source: Warner Bros.
- Ready Player One (2018) release date: Mar 29, 2018