I have to admit that I kind of went back and forth on whether or not to share the trailer for Dear Evan Hansen, the film adaptation for the Tony-award winning Broadway musical.
It’s been a while since I’ve seen a trailer greeted with this much derision. My natural instinct is to be a contrarian and to try to defend it. (Remember …. I proudly put Money Plane on my list of the best films of 2020. I campaigned, albeit unsuccessfully, for Kesley Grammar to receive a Best Supporting Actor nomination for his career-defining performance as The Rumble in that same film. I’ve voted for multiple third party candidates and I still hold on to hope that Degrassi will somehow be renewed for another season. I am not scared of embracing a lost cause.) However, I actually agree with a lot of the comments that have been made about this trailer. For instance, it does give away almost the entire plot. And it does tend to go on and on. (No trailer should be over 3 minutes long.) And, perhaps most importantly, Ben Platt does look way too old to be playing a depressed and insecure high school kid.
It should, of course, be noted that Ben Platt originated the role of Evan Hansen, playing the role from the first reading of the show all the way to Dear Evan Hansen‘s eventual Broadway premiere. He played the role for three years. He won a Tony Award for playing Evan Hansen. One could argue that Ben Platt earned the right to recreate the role on film. However, judging from the trailer, Ben Platt may be 27 but looks at least ten years older. He looks less like Julianne Moore’s son and more like her younger brother. The attempts to make him look like a high school student just seem to age him even more. On stage, this would be less of an issue. However, watching the trailer, it’s pretty much the only thing that you can think about.
That said, this film was directed by Stephen Chbosky. Chbosky also wrote and directed one of my favorite films of all time, The Perks of Being A Wallflower. My hope is that Chbosky can pull it off and that Ben Platt’s performance will be so effective that it won’t matter that he’s way too old for the role.
Anyway, with all that in mind, here’s the trailer: