When was the last time that a big-budget Hollywood flick was marketed with the style and savvy with which 'Battle: Los Angeles' has been systematically revealed to the masses? Ever since Comic-Con last July, Columbia Pictures has quietly worked to ensure that Jonathan Liebsman's alien invasion blockbuster would be the event picture of the spring season. It's too early to tell whether or not their coolly elegant campaign will pay off at the box office (we bet it will), but the string of snazzy trailers they've released have guaranteed that movie fans the world over are seriously excited to see this thing. And now Columbia has dropped the longest trailer yet, an 150-second stunner which really proves beyond a doubt that this is a movie in which aliens battle people for Los Angeles.

Check it out for yourself after the jump! But beware the potential spoilers of a full-length trailer.

This is the film's first trailer to really diversify from the atmospherically vague teasers, which took a page out of the Gears of War playbook by heightening the devastation with a discordant pop hymn. (The ominous tune heard introduced in the early previews is "Part V" by Johann Johannsson. Personally, I would have gone with Train's "Hey, Soul Sister," which in hindsight was obviously the missing component of 'Scott Pilgrim's' campaign.) This latest clip gives us a glimpse of our military heroes before the action starts, and we're finally given a proper introduction to Aaron Eckhart's staff sergeant, as well as a few of the men and women who comprise his ill-fated unit.

And then we're whisked through what's presumably the film's first act, which is why my admiration for this trailer is tempered by my recommendation that you only watch it if the teasers left you cold or unconvinced. For many of us, the most fun parts of disaster movies are often not the money shots or the climactic firefights, but rather the gradual crescendo to the chaos: the scrambled television signals of 'Independence Day,' the mysterious army vehicles speeding past Thomas Jane in 'The Mist,' or the waiting in line for the bathroom before 'Skyline.' The action itself tends to be a bit disappointing, but the tension of the calm before the storm usually makes for some reliable fun, and this latest 'Battle: Los Angeles' trailer might reveal a wee bit too much of that stuff for some viewers. We don't learn a lot that we didn't already know -- aliens invade and Los Angeles fights back - but the beauty of such a simple premise is that the particulars can be comfortably reserved for the finished film.

For those of us who can't wait, the trailer unleashes some promisingly awesome stuff. All the highlights of the previous teasers are back, but this time around the 'Black Hawk Down' vibe is made all the more explicit. Twisting bundles of missiles, exploding helicopters, and wider glimpses of the carnage are all on fiery display -- scale doesn't really seem to be much of an issue here. Throw in some alien eggs and a massively mechanical finale that McG would have killed for and you've got yourself a spectacularly promising spring sci-fi extravaganza. Regardless of how the film ultimately turns out, you've gotta hope that Hollywood recognizes the effectiveness of the 'Battle: Los Angeles' campaign, and strives for this kind of promotional elegance in the future.

So are you guys as stoked for this as we are? Can a trailer be deemed officially undeniable if it forces us to use the word "stoked?" What do you make of the relatively abstract marketing campaign, and are you more excited for 'Battle: Los Angeles' or 'Sucker Punch?'
Battle: Los Angeles
PG-13 2011
Based on 35 critics

A Marine officer (Aaron Eckhart) and his platoon make a daring stand against alien invaders. Read More