Here are some things that happen in the second trailer for Joy, starring Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper in their third David O. Russell movie, to be released on Christmas Day:
Jennifer Lawrence has a gun.
Jennifer Lawrence gets arrested.
A small child jumps into Jennifer Lawrence's arms.
Jennifer Lawrence talks about how she got a great start in life, and now she lives with her parents who are getting divorced.
Jennifer Lawrence cuts off her hair.
Bradley Cooper says, "I believe the ordinary meets the extraordinary every single day."
Jennifer Lawrence meets with some shady mobster character trying to shake her down for money.
Intriguing ... except that none of it really gels into any sort of plot. (Is it a family drama? Something with the mob? A crime thriller? You just don't know.) It's extremely confusing, and even more notably, there's one important element completely left out of the trailer: Mops.
Hold on - this is a significant fact. Joy is about Joy Mangano, the millionaire creator of the Miracle Mop. You certainly wouldn't know it from the trailer, but that's Lawrence's role.
The only thing in the trailer that sort of hints at this is Joy's voiceover. "I have real ambitions and real ideas," she says, hunched over a desk sketching ... something. "We're making an invention, and it's very serious," her daughter says. Then you see Joy walking through a factory as someone whispers, "Joy's never run a business in her entire life!"
Again - where are the mops?! Even the movie's official description on its website avoids the M word: "JOY is the wild story of a family across four generations centered on the girl who becomes the woman who founds a business dynasty and becomes a matriarch in her own right. Betrayal, treachery, the loss of innocence and the scars of love, pave the road in this intense emotional and human comedy about becoming a true boss of family and enterprise facing a world of unforgiving commerce."
The only hint of this "business dynasty" is in the first trailer, which shows Joy scrubbing the floor, pulling at a mop-looking device and then frantically sketching. But if you didn't know to be carefully scouting the footage for a mop, you would have no idea what it is.
Personally, I saw this first trailer as a preview months ago and spent way too much time during the following preview wondering what I just watched. I was genuinely shocked when I found out it was about the creator of the most famous mop of all time.
But let's be real - even though Joy's rags-to-riches story should already be interesting, the decision to leave mops out of the marketing isn't too surprising: They aren't the sexiest way to sell a movie. It makes sense that the studio hopes people see the trailer and go, "Jennifer Lawrence. Bradley Cooper. A mobster? Let's go see it!" Even if it's a bit misleading to the audience, the real-life Joy anticipated this back in the day when she was profiled on 20/20, describing that, at first, infomercials for the Miracle Mop didn't do so well.
"They said, 'You know, a mop is just not going to sell on TV,' " Mangano explained.