‘Barbarian’: A Memorable Movie Experience

Avoid trailers if you truly want to enjoy watching a movie again



Watching “Barbarian” without seeing the trailer led to an exciting and rewarding viewing experience.


For the last couple of years, I have fallen into the bad habit of watching too many promotional materials for a movie prior to its release. 

As an example, prior to the release of “The Batman,” I was obsessed with watching and reading anything related, whether it was a trailer, a TV ad, an interview with the cast or even the pre-release of the movie score. 

This ultimately ruined the movie for me because when I finally went to see it, I already knew what to expect in almost every scene. As the movie progressed, the rest of the audience’s reactions of shock and excitement filled me with disappointment, as I couldn’t help but think that I just wrecked what could have been one of my favorite movie experiences if I hadn’t spoiled the movie for myself. 

When I told my family about my poor experience with “The Batman,” my aunt suggested that I see a movie without knowing anything about it. For me, this seemed nearly impossible, but I gave it a shot with “Barbarian.” The only thing I knew about “Barbarian” before seeing it was that it was a horror movie that was around an hour and 45 minutes long. 

I will avoid giving away any spoilers, as I don’t want to ruin what can be one of your most memorable viewing experiences, like it was for me. To give you an idea of what the movie is about, you can expect the usual horror movie cliches like a spooky house, some questionable decisions by the protagonist, as well as some jump scares. 

What stands out about “Barbarian” is its creativity in expanding on these cliches while having effective camera work and an original plot. The movie has it all: shocks, comedy and some of the most disturbing and uncomfortable scenes I’ve seen put to screen. If you are still looking for more information about the plot, I’ll give you three clues: Detroit, milk and Airbnb.

Currently, due to an abundance of entertainment and instant gratification, most movie trailers have become pretty much a summary of the movie, giving away the entire plot.

My favorite part about seeing “Barbarian” was definitely all the different reactions of the audience. Throughout the movie, the audience became alive, screaming, covering their eyes and doing whatever they could to calm themselves down. It was amazing to see the different reactions of my friends, whether they were laughing nervously, leaning towards the screen in anticipation of a jump scare, or whispering, begging and cursing at the characters to turn back.

During one particular scene toward the middle of the movie, I couldn’t help but get scared. I relentlessly tapped my foot while the sweat started to pool on my hands as the protagonist went further and further into the darkness.

After leaving the theater satisfied, I am very grateful that my aunt gave me the idea of seeing a movie without knowing anything about it — it was one of the most exciting and rewarding viewing experiences I’ve had in years. It seemed like the first time since I was a kid where I felt connected to the rest of the audience. The emotions I was feeling were pure and not preimposed by previous expectations based on a trailer.

I suggest you do the same as me and avoid watching the trailer of a movie before seeing it. Currently, due to an abundance of entertainment and instant gratification, most movie trailers have become pretty much a summary of the movie, giving away the entire plot. This isn’t necessarily the fault of the movie companies but of ourselves, because with so many entertainment options, it is hard for something to grasp our attention. To do so requires revealing something shocking or exciting that we haven’t seen before, which is extremely difficult to accomplish nowadays. 

This new type of movie trailer arguably ruins the very movie it is marketing by showing some of the best moments and giving the audience an overview of what is going to happen. It limits the viewing experience and the emotions that the movie can evoke. 

Some may argue that watching a trailer is necessary in order to pique your interest in seeing the movie, but with the abundance of information about the cast, the genre and the possible cinematic universe the movie is a part of, you have all the information you need before seeing it. 

With this in mind, I hope some of you who read this will stop watching movie trailers, allowing you to react naturally to a movie. It will give you the best opportunity to truly connect with the story and with the characters.