Today at noon, the folks behind Avatar released something they’re calling an Interactive Trailer. Intrigued by the the word “interactive,” I downloaded and installed the Adobe Air application. There’s no doubt that the movie looks amazing (and it should, James Cameron has spent practically the whole decade obsessing over every detail), but I’m a bit confused about what, exactly, makes this trailer “interactive.”
I suppose we all have our own thoughts about what “interactive” means. Quite simply, I think it means that the user’s action should create a unique and variable experience—and I don’t believe that’s the result of the Avatar Interactive Trailer. Everyone has the same basic experience: Watch the trailer then click a thumbnail to watch additional video content. The user doesn’t actually interact with the video, just around it, above it or below it.
After fiddling with it for 20 minutes or so, I don’t get it. I don’t see how this application is any different from a standard movie website that offers a series of videos. So, I have questions: Why build this as an Adobe Air application? What does “interactive” mean these days? Does just clicking to watch additional content constitute an “interactive” user experience?
In this case, ”interactive” just seems like the wrong label—especially when it comes to video content. The bar has already been set high by truly interactive video pieces like Arcade Fire’s Neon Bible and Cold War Kids’ I’ve Seen Enough. And the Avatar Interactive Trailer certainly doesn’t live up to that standard.
Agree? Disagree? Let’s hear it.