Hello February! Lots of animals this week as they serve as the bookend to an acclaimed foreign film and two interesting indies.
Also the commentary is being kept in the family this week with my brother Joseph returning to help me out.
“Kubo And The Two Strings” (August 19) *Andrew’s Trailer of the Week*
J – My first problem with this trailer is that his guitar has three strings, not two. When I see the cast, I get excited for the movie. Any movie with Charlize Theron, Rooney Mara and Matthew McConaughey is going to be good, but the plot looks like Guitar Hero meets ‘The Last Airbender’. This movie could be contender for best animated picture – though it is a little early to be sure – and it will give Disney Pixar a run for its money. I don’t plan to see it in theaters but I won’t say no if people ask me to watch it.
A- How dare you! This is the last trailer you write about! I’m kidding, but I don’t see how you can watch this visually stunning and imaginative wonder of a trailer and not be thrilled. When the first trailer came out Trenton and I raved about it with both of us referencing Laika Studio’s last picture ‘The Boxtrolls’. And maybe part of the key of enjoying this trailer is knowing what this studio is capable of (which is a lot). If you’re an animation geek you should be excited for more Laika pictures whereas Joseph refuses to even see ‘Inside Out’.
“The Secret Life of Pets” (July 8) *Joseph’s Trailer of the Week*
J- I am glad to see that they actually included a plot in this trailer. I thought this movie looked really funny when the teaser came out, but now we get a little more of what this movie is about. The movie is a taking a new look into what our pets do, but then the plot becomes a homeward bound/Emperor’s New Groove style journey back home. This movie shows promise, especially since it is coming from the humans that made Despicable Me, but I hope that the comedy and unique ideas span throughout the movie and not just rest at the beginning of the film.
A- The trailers for this have been funny and inventive and yes, having it come from the ‘Despicable Me’ crew inspires confidence because it is not the most difficult thing to make an animated movie look good. At its best this is ‘Despicable Me’ level. At its worst it is good for 30 minutes and bearable for the rest. I’m good with that.
“Cemetery of Splendour” (March 4)
J- I have no idea what this movie is about but I think it looks interesting. Generally, I don’t care for foreign films but something about this trailer reminded me of the Interstellar trailers. It doesn’t tell you much, if anything, about the actual movie but catches your attention with the strangeness of the plot and striking images.
A- This film was selected for 2015’s Cannes Film Festival where the director Apichatpong Weerasethakul has become a regular including winning the Palme d’Or in 2010 for ‘Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives’. He likes to deal with the surreal while finding ways to keep it tight with reality and this movie looks no different. That’s not always easy to do, but when it’s done right it can become an experience you won’t forget (Every episode of Hannibal, the dream sequences in Mad Men, a Paul Thomas Anderson film). This popped up on several arthouse top 10’s for 2015 and I’m excited for it to finally hit the U.S.
“The Confirmation” (March 18)
J- This is the first movie that I have seen that will be available in theaters and on iTunes on the same day. If I didn’t know better, I would say this was a Coen film. This was written by the same screenwriter that did Nebraska, which I love, and you can see right from the start that it will have the same humor and disturbed family relationships. It won’t be a hugely successful movie but any fans of Nebraska will fall in love with this movie.
A- You’d be forgiven if you mistook this trailer as a parody of a typical Sundance film trailer. That’s more a slam against the lack of originality in many trailers than it is an indictment of this film. But because of that I”m afraid my cynicism is kicking in so I’m going to go with Joseph’s opinion and hope he’s right.
“The Bronze” (March 18)
J- Melissa Rauch is going to turn into the next Melissa McCarthy, except not as big. This movie looks horribly annoying and I’m guessing that the rival coach and Rauch will fall in love at the end of the movie while she is overcoming all of her character flaws.
A- Boo on that joke Joseph. Raunchy films are tough to gauge in trailers. Different people have different lines for raunchiness to go from raunchy to raunchy. It’s reviews out of Sundance in 2015 kind of bear this out. You’re all on your own with this one.
“The Angry Birds Movie” (May 20)
J- The animation looks good and they got a lot of people to join in, but like Battleship, I think they will have a hard time finding enough story to justify making a movie.
A- They don’t care! Kids are going to flock to this thing. And it means we will have a Candy Crush movie real soon.
“Nine Lives” (August 5)
J- Why did Kevin Spacey sign on for this movie? No one saw Garfield, for good reason, and no one is going to see this.
A- This was the 4th best trailer this week that heavily featured animals.
Image via Youtube