Home > Trailers > Trailer Roulette – Creepy situations, eternal youth, and Anna Faris has trouble finding a good man yet again

Trailer Roulette – Creepy situations, eternal youth, and Anna Faris has trouble finding a good man yet again

I’ve had an exhausting few days at work and church, and I think I’m fighting off what may yet develop into a cold, so I figured I’d write something a bit more simple tonight.

First, though, I have a confession: As of right now, I’m a bit behind on what’s coming out this fall. It’s shameful, but you know, life obligations and all. It’s cool. I’ll get through it. But I figured I’d share the experience with you guys with a little activity I used to do all the time at the end of a long week of work and am now trying to revive. For the purposes of having a title, let’s call this “Trailer Roulette.”

Here’s how it will work. I’m going to browse the YouTube trailers page for random, upcoming films and work out with you guys whether these trailers look like they’re worthwhile. I used to do this using iTunes, but, frankly, iTunes is starting to hate my computer, and I’ve long been starting to hate it for hating my computer, so,while these trailers aren’t necessarily in as high quality as those, they work, load faster, and, best of all, they are shareable.

50/50 – Release: Sept. 30, 2011

I’d heard about this project a while ago when it was announced with the title I’m With Cancer. After wisely changing the title as well as going through a change in the lead roll from James McAvoy to the other “it”-guy-of-late, Joseph Gordon-Levit, this was the ambiguously titled result. 50/50 was a sort of passion project for Seth Rogen’s friend, comedy writer Will Reiser, who wrote the screenplay for this film as a sort of memoir about his own fight with cancer, casting Seth Rogen in the Seth Rogen role, only there’s actually an excuse for this because Kyle is essentially the movie version of Seth Rogen in the true story. Makes sense and gives the guy an appropriate excuse for being… Seth Rogen.

Going into the trailer, I didn’t know who would be rounding out the cast, but it looks like it’ll be a pretty strong one. Anna Kendrick (Twilight, Up in the Air), Bryce Dallas Howard (Lady in the Water, The Help), Anjelica Huston (The Addams Family, The Royal Tenenbaums), and an obligatory old man who likes weed and will likely die before the end of the film will all likely make this an atypically enjoyable though tear-filled journey for the lead character, who, unless the story deviates from reality, will likely survive to the end. I’m actually looking forward to seeing this at some point. The film has only 2 negative reviews out of 24 on Rotten Tomatoes at the time of writing  this, and that brings it to a very high 92% approval rating. With a release nearing by the end of the week, that actually bodes well for the movie, and I’m actually kind of a sucker for these types of films.

The premise of centering a comedy around the experience of dealing with cancer is actually a great idea. Why does every movie of this sort have to be so somber? My own mother fought cancer a few years ago, and while the disease itself isn’t any laughing matter and it’s undeniably an unpleasant thing to go through and doesn’t always have such a happy ending, there were still moments of happiness, nevertheless, and I think it’s important that there is a film out there saying that cancer doesn’t have to be the end. The fact that the film is based on the life of a comedy writer will hopefully excuse the film in the eyes of those who would be more sensitive to the subject. While audiences get the typical gross out and weed gags you’d expect from a movie featuring Rogen, the movie doesn’t look like your typical gross out and weed gags type of movie, and I fully expect this to become a mild hit. And, what’s this? Oscar winner Michael Giacchino’s doing the music? The man who made a cartoon and Star Trek tear up with the power of his score? I fully expect some tears from this movie, then. Good ones.

Dream House – Sept. 30, 2011

I’ve barely heard about this one. I may have seen the teaser at some point. I got sort of a Shining-type vibe off the poster, and, it turns out, I was probably on the right track. This looks to be a horror-thriller hybrid, just in time for Halloween season, which normally wouldn’t peak my interest if it weren’t for the unusually strong cast in the lead roles. Daniel Craig, Naomi Watts, and Rachel Weisz set off the cliched use of creepy kid sounds and twinkling music box and piano music in the trailer, which likely deviates from the tone of the film itself. Clearly the editor of this trailer knew how to hook in a general audience. I hope I’m not going to sound too pretentious, but this nearly put me off the film. This kind of thing happened with Brothers, another film that was advertised as somewhat of a horror-thriller type film with big name stars in it. I put off watching that one until my stepsister encouraged me to watch it sometime after Christmas last year. That film ultimately surprised me with how good it actually was, and this looks to be in the same vein.

And, wouldn’t you know it? The films share the same Oscar-Nominated director, Jim Sheridan! Totally didn’t know that until I just now looked it up. Honest! If you’ve seen that film, you may be able to see the subtle similarities in how the two films look, even with Dream House‘s special effects. Unlike Brothers, which used camera tricks like dropping frames and, I’m guessing here, different types of cameras, this film looks to use CG effects extensively to convey the confusion as to whether Daniel Craig’s character actually killed his family or not. Hopefully, like Brothers, this film surprises me despite its trailer’s unoriginality.

The Three Musketeers – Oct. 14, 2011

No doubt this is yet another attempt to create a franchise around The Three Musketeers. Like the ill-fated wuxia-style adaptation, The Musketeer, this one looks to do something stylistically different with Alexandre Dumas’ story by throwing in some spectacle. Director Paul W.S. Anderson substituted martial arts with a fantasy setting, complete with airships, which actually reminded me of Super Mario Bros. 3, Final Fantasy, and Disney’s own revision of a classic story, Treasure Planet, all at once.

Being a P.W.S.A production, of course, Milla Jovovich, his wife, was thrown into the role of Milady de Winter — a character which, I guess I’m glad to learn, was actually a spy in the original story and was not forcibly adapted into a new, butt-kicking version of her former self. Honestly, I’m not actually that familiar with the actual story, as I’ve never really cared for any of the number of adaptations to come out and, yes, I’m a very bad writer for being a very bad reader (not that I’m incapable of it). Paul W.S. Anderson (Event Horizon, the  Resident Evil films, the Mortal Kombat film) is famous for favoring style and action over substance, and is not, by the way, to be confused with the critically lauded Paul Thomas Anderson (Boogie NightsThere Will Be Blood).

I have little hope that this film will be any different, though it may possibly be more fun to watch. Lead actor Logan Lerman (Percy Jackson…) never seems to be capable of make any other faces than the “I’m trying really hard to look determined” ones he makes in every role I’ve seen him in, but maybe he’s learned some more expressions with age, and he was pretty decent at putting those limited expressions in 3:10 to Yuma to good use. Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds) is apparently somewhere in there, but presumably not in a butt-kicking role, which is probably why he’s absent from the trailer proceedings. Nonetheless, he’ll probably be the best part of the movie, but only briefly. No high expectations here.

What’s Your Number? – Sept. 30, 2011

Ugh. REALLY? There’s an old belief that adding a question mark to your title dooms your movie to failure. Who Frame Roger Rabbit is a good example of a movie that succeeded and did not include the punctuation in its title. This movie, on the other hand, has everything going for it that makes me want to not see it, complete with music from Pink playing over the trailer. I’ve always wanted to like Anna Faris, as I can tell she’s a gifted comedian who probably hasn’t quite found the right role, but I just can’t because she always been in crap-looking movies like this. She’s sort of a Kate Hudson 1.5 — no, not 2.0 because there was some overlap there for a while. However Hudson has seemingly fallen out of favor for audiences ever since Bride Wars (which somehow left Anne Hathaway unscathed, but she has more obvious talents in other genres, too).

Movies like this always piss me off, not just because of the formula (the all-to-obvious guy who’s right for the girl, but she doesn’t notice it; tripping over a dress while running to/attending a friend’s wedding because, you know, always a bridesmaid and such), but also because of all the stars who are so obviously cashing in a check. Aside from Anna Faris, there’s Chris Evans, Joel McHale, Zachary Quinto, Andy Samberg, Chris Pratt… possibly some more, but all too enjoyable to be in a movie like this. Good for them, I guess. Everyone needs to keep working, but I always hope that it doesn’t start some slippery slope for these guys. Did you know that people once liked Eugene Levy? Now he’s no longer making jokes – he’s become one! Also, have you seen the poster? It’s like a horror movie. You’re screaming at the lead actress “He’s right behind you!” only he’s coming in for a kiss rather than putting an axe to her head. Now that would be a romantic comedy worth seeing. Somebody make a romantic comedy about an axe murderer! … Wait…

Rascals – Oct. 6, 2011… at least in India

After watching the teaser trailer for this and ending up wondering why a music video needed a trailer of its own, this seemingly more plot-focused trailer left me with only the vaguest idea of what’s going on in this movie. Sadly, I do not speak nor do I understand Hindi. I’m not even sure if this is coming out in America in the first place, so I can only guess as to whether a action-packed Bollywood musical comedy about men going through midlife crises by imitating American rappers, hitting on younger women, and featuring a lead performance of a former(?) politician, who was once charged with acts of terrorism, will capture the interest of American audiences. The fact that YouTube is promoting it would seem to suggest this is so, though. You gotta appreciate how literal the lyrics are in the accompanying song. “Hey Rascals, I will fly in the air and kick you right in the potato. You will go flying in the sky like a bird.” … Indeed.

In Time – Oct. 28, 2011

I’ve seen the trailer for this in theatres before, but every time I see the name, I keep forgetting which movie this is until I look into it. Perhaps I’m just bored by big conspiracies these days since it seems like everyone is tackling the subject in some form, but the concept of In Time is at least one that could sustain a film for an hour and a half. I’m not entirely certain why 30-year-old Justin Timberlake and 35-year-old Cillian Murphy are playing guys who aren’t supposed to age beyond the looks of a 25-year-old, but perhaps that’s kind of part of the plot. Kinda like Taye Diggs in Equilibirium,where his character clearly wasn’t taking his unhappy pills. Regardless, it’s a fun enough concept, and Timberlake has been showing potential as a crossover performer with stints on Saturday Night Live and his role in The Social Network, among others.

Director Andrew Niccol has had experience exploring the concept of individuals whose lives are scrutinized by the masses before, having had a hand in GattacaThe Truman Show, S1m0neThe Terminal, and Lord of War, each in various capacities. The film itself seems to promise action and intrigue in a false Utopian setting, with a very thin layer of critique regarding the cult of youth our society pays into to keep the analytical types out there chewing on something. The better to keep them from complaining about all the likely plotholes, I presume. I wouldn’t recommend holding your breath if you’re expecting something more cerebral.

I’m Glad My Mother is Alive – Sept. 4, 2011 (US)

Another foreign film, of which I have had no prior knowledge, but the name was intriguing, and so I watched the trailer. I gotta say, along with 50/50, this trailer piqued my interest the most. I seem to gravitate towards films with a strong emphasis on individual characters, and this seems to be along those lines. Co-directed and co-written by Claude and Nathan Miller, father and son, this French import, originally titled Je suis heureux que ma mère soit vivante, was actually filmed in 2009 and has just recently seen a release here in the US. Apparently it’s a pretty limited release, though it’s also very likely I was just in the dark the whole time.

Unlike Rascals, this trailer actually has subtitles, so the plot about a son seeking out the mother who abandoned him is immediately apparent. The title, however, suggests something a bit disturbing. The logical reaction to it seems to be “For how long?” Somehow, stating something so matter-of-factly just gives a statement a creepy overtone, and the film’s IMDB page confirms my suspicions that something might not be right with the kid, especially once he finds out that the reunion with his mother wasn’t what he was expecting or hoping. While it’s doubtful that I will go seek this out in theatres, I’ll be sure to place it in my DVD queue when I get the chance. The elder Miller was a direct protege of some of France’s most heralded New Wave directors, including Jean-Luc Godard and François Truffaut, and so it’s no surprise that many American critics have already looked favorably upon this film. I’m no connoisseur of French New Wave, of course, but I’m still expecting at least a hint of greatness from this.

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