Get with the times, Jeff Wells. The studios are all about extended previews nowadays. It has nothing to do with quality.
For Get Smart, it’s all about out-maneuvering the direct competition of Mike Myers’s The Love Guru. With the tracking looking dead-even a week-and-a-half away from release (June 20th), Warner Brothers needs to get aggressive – especially since Myers used the MTV Movie Awards as a Greatest Hits celebration (though that depressing Wayne’s World reunion didn’t exactly whet my appetite for the comedian’s latest).
Interestingly, the seven-minute scene they’ve chosen to debut on iTunes is the first one Peter Segal showed to me when I visited the film’s editing room last January: in it, Maxwell (Steve Carell) tries to use his newest gadget to free himself from a pair of PlastiCuffs. As he’s in a cramped airplane lavatory, things don’t quite go off as planned, but Maxwell’s predicament does get a little less painful once he’s plummeting sans parachute to his death.
This clip is entirely representative of the film’s tone: it’s incredibly silly, but there’s real, dare I say palpable chemistry between Smart and Agent 99 (a never hotter Anne Hathaway). Aside from a couple of priceless Alan Arkin moments, they’re the reason the movie works.
But why don’t you boot up iTunes, download the clip and decide for yourself whether it’s Get Smart, The Love Guru or a Bresson-a-thon on June 20th.