So, with that in mind, here are just a few of the most popular responses shared:
"A modern comedy take on Honey, I Shrunk the Kids? No. A confusing climate change apocalypse movie."
3. Bridge to Terabithia (2007)
"The trailers implied that it was going to be a whimsical children's fantasy film, similar to Narnia. In reality, it was a coming of age tale dealing with sudden death and loss. I read the book when I was a kid, so I was thrown off when I first saw the trailer. Based on the trailers, I thought they took Terabithia literally and made a movie about the place. I'm glad that I was wrong, as the movie is basically a shot for shot adaptation of the book, just set in the mid-2000s instead of the '70s."
"Its hilarious that whenever this subject comes up, this absurd movie that bombed that everybody immediately forgot about comes up again and again. I'm guessing it's because my whole generation were kids at that age, saw the trailer, and were super into the idea of a talking, risqué kangaroo, and got really pissed when the whole trailer turned out to just be about a five-minute dream sequence in the movie itself."
"The trailer was about 50% Bryan Cranston, who was super-popular after Breaking Bad. You'd think he was actually the protagonist, but if you watch the movie, he's only got a few scenes."
"Hancock isn’t about a drunk superhero like it seems in the trailer. Instead, he's a drunk angel. It’s weird."
"The trailers made it seem like 'It's Taken...WITH WOLVES!' Instead, it's a bleak existential drama. Very strange experience."
"The trailer manipulated movie footage to create the illusion of supernatural or sci-fi elements. There was nothing like that in the actual movie. For example, the little girl in the hotel hallway was manipulated to look like a ghost in the trailer. In the movie, she was actually just a normal little girl. The glitching airplane flying over the cotton field in the trailer indicated time travel or parallel universes, but it was just a normal airplane in present day. There was no glitching in the movie."
"I only recently watched it, but it looked like a simple movie when I saw the trailer. On actually seeing it, I think I was surprised by how much it was just a series of music videos. There’s a plot, but it’s not particularly engaging between the long segment parts."
"The trailers made it out to be a car chase centric thrill ride. In reality, all car scenes were shown in their entirety in the trailers."
"It was sold as a dumb boner comedy, but it's much better than any of those types of films. I think it's one of the best films of 2009."
"The trailers made it out to be a Gulf War-era testosterone-laced action romp. This was insane given the minimal amount of action shown in any of the trailers. In reality, what we got was a deep character study on the futility and 'shut up and wait' aspect of war. To be clear, I thoroughly enjoyed the movie, especially during subsequent viewings once my expectations were fully tempered."
13. Stranger than Fiction (2006)
"The trailer included all of the comedy scenes from the movie and made it seem like it was a wacky story because it starred Will Ferrell. The movie is actually quite serious for the premise, and Will Ferrell delivered a wonderful dramatic performance."
14. Thelma & Louise (1991)
"I’ll answer this on behalf of my late mother, who I went to see this movie with because she thought it was 'a wacky female roadtrip adventure comedy' from the commercials. Wrong."
15. 500 Days of Summer (2009)
16. Halloween Ends (2022)
"The movie with Jason Biggs and Mena Suvari is one I have been thinking about recently. I remember seeing the trailer in the early 2000s and thought it looked like a typical college rom-com with some American Pie humor, but the film turned out to be quite humorless and actually dark in places."
"I thought it was just another Adam Sandler goofball comedy where he could control time. Instead, I bawled my eyes out the last 20 minutes."
"This one comes to mind. Obviously, they wouldn’t want to give away the twist, but the trailer made it look like just a bunch of guys who organized bar fights."
"The trailer basically promoted it as a kids movie, but in reality, it’s the best Star Trek movie ever made."
"The trailer makes it look like a goofy crime comedy when it's an incredibly bleak (but still hilarious) dark comedy."
"The trailers were happy-go-lucky and cute. The film was that, too, but also big and weird and sad and genuinely experimental, especially for a big-budget studio animated film. For some (like myself), it really worked. For others, it came off as confrontational and 'too much for a children's film.' Having talked to people that worked on it, this was intentional because they had no idea how to market the movie's wildly varying tone, or its darker sequences, or its religious and environmentalist subtexts, so they culled most of the stuff from the first 30 minutes and went with what was safest."
23. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011)
"I think the trailer showed most of the 'action,' and it was a lot slower paced in reality. A couple near us got up and walked out declaring it 'shit' as they walked by. I still enjoyed it."
"The trailer sold me a creepy thriller, but I got zero thriller. Instead, it was two thirds of a movie and one third of a PowerPoint presentation."
"I thought it was going to be some corporate cover-up that gets pinned on Denzel Washington and he has to uncover it to prove his innocence. Turned out to be about alcoholism."
26. Observe and Report (2009)
"The trailer made it seem like a really silly comedy, but it was much darker. A YouTube comment I saw once referred to it as, 'What if Taxi Driver was a comedy?' and I agree with that. I found it to be way less funny and way more uncomfortable than the trailer made it out to be."
"I was really disappointed with this movie. The trailer made it look like a really cool ghost story, but it has almost nothing to do with ghosts."
28. The Descendants (2011)
"The trailer made it seem like a light, heartfelt comedy with George Clooney hiding in bushes and running around. Instead, it was a heartbreaking drama about loss, regret, and dysfunctional family."
29. The Place Beyond the Pines (2012)
"The trailer I remember seeing made it look like bank robbery was the central theme, but that was, like, 10 minutes of it."
30. The Green Knight (2021)
"The trailer completely misrepresents the main character's arc. The trailers make it seem like he's a noble knight on a quest to prove his nobility. In the actual movie, he's a naive moron in completely over his head."
32. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
33. Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
"Not a trailer, but I remember a bus advertising for this movie in the UK tagged it as 'The feel-good movie of the year.' Yeah, that’s a 'no.'"
You've read their picks, but now it's your turn! What's a movie you felt turned out drastically different than its trailer led you to believe? Share in the comments below!
Some responses were edited for length and/or clarity. H/T: Reddit.