Monday, January 23, 2006

Doctor C's Trailer Shakedown

From the dark, murky world of trailers on the interweb, I have personally taken on the noble task of weeding out the "what looks good" from the "what looks bad, or boring, or just plain horrible". So, here we go.

V FOR VENDETTA
Based upon the testimonies of those who are fortunate enough to have already seen this movie, I'd have to say this might be my most looked-forward-to film of 2006. It's a revolution story set in a totilitarian future England, and from what they tell me, there are a lot of hard-hitting parellels to the current American government which will no doubt cause a huge amount of controversy when it's released. I can't wait, personally - I'm a big fan of "message" sci-fi movies, epsecially if the message a heavy "fuck you" to the Bush Administration. Hugo Weaving stars as V, the titular character, and Natalie Portman co-stars with her adorable shaved head.

THANK YOU FOR SMOKING
A satirical comedy about a lobbyist for a giant tobacco corporation who is paid to come up with ways to make smoking look "cool". The trailer looks brilliant and the cast is great - Aaron Eckhart, Maria Bello, William H. Macy, Sam Elliott and Robert Duvall. Best line from the trailer tha made me laugh out loud was Macy proclaimng "The great state of Vermont will NOT apologize for its cheese!"

NEIL YOUNG: HEART OF GOLD
A concert film of the iconic rock singer directed by Jonathan Demme. I'm a huge fan of both Neil Young and Demme's famous Talking Heads film Stop Making Sense so this one looks like a real keeper.

THREE...EXTREMES
The Asian shock film fanboys will soil their trousers with glee over this one...a short horror film anthology directed by Chan-wook Park, Takashi Miike, and Fruit Chan. Okay, I admit - I have no idea who Fruit Chan is and have only seen a handful of movies by the other two guys, but this still looks rather exciting, in a "Tales from the Crypt" meets Oldboy sort of sense.

ELLIE PARKER
Naomi Watts is fast becoming one of my favorite contemporary actresses. Not only is she incredibly talented and damn beautiful to boot, the fact that she's not quite as famous as, say, Nicole Kidman or Renee Zellwegger allows her to back and forth between uber-blockbusters like King Kong to independant tiny-budget productions shot with a Mini DV video camera. Ellie Parker is a comedy about the adventures of a struggling Los Angeles actress, and the trailer looks just hilarious. I will definatley be seeing this one.

THE THREE BURIALS OF MELQUIADES ESTRADA
A modern-day western directed by and starring Mr. Woodrow F. Call himself, Tommy Lee Jones, as well as Barry Pepper (very underrated in my opinion) and Dwight Yokam. The plot deals with Jones making a Quixotic journey into Mexico to bury a friend.

AMERICAN DREAMZ

Dennis Quaid plays a dim-witted American President similar to someone we know, and Hugh Grant is the host of the titlar TV show, a thinly-veiled takeoff of "American Idol". To boost the ratings, they get the President to guest-star on the show as well as an Iraqi teenage contestant, and there is some kind of assasination plot, etc. Directed by Paul Weitz of About A Boy fame, this looks more along the lines of a Team America style of lightweight comedy than a hard-nosed political satire, but should be a lot of fun nonetheless.

HARD CANDY
Out of approximately 50 horror trailers they showed before I saw Hosel, this recent independant thriller/drama was the only one which, in fact, looked any good at all. A 30-something man picks up a 14-year-old girl on the internet and takes her over to his house, but ironically enough, the trailer seems to suggest that he ends up getting the raw end of the deal in the creepy situation.

X-MEN 3
The third of what have so far been my favorite of all the superhero-based movies for their skilled balancing of social relevence alongside all the special effects and ass-whoopin'. Granted, t's a bit of a dissappointment that Brett "Rush Hour" Ratner is going to be directing this one instead of Bryan Singer, but it still looks extremely promising, and once again, Kleiser-Walczak will be handling the effects for Mystique.

CHRISTMAS IN THE CLOUDS
A Native American comedy of mistaken identity which looks similar to Chris Eyre's films. A young woman travels to a small Native-run hotel to meet her pen pal, an old man in his 60's, and mistakes his son for him. The son mistakes her for a hotel critic and the whole crew frantically tries to impress her - shenanigans ensue. This looks funny, kind of Smoke Signals meets "Fawltey Towers" - and the wonderful Graham Greene plays a chef.

SLITHER
Another project that Kleiser-Walczak did the odd bit of work on, this alien/small town/virus/zombie flick looks like it will literally be one of the grossest movies ever made. From what I understand, there's ver little CGI in the picture, it's mostly makeup, prosthetics and animatronics, with creatures that look like a cross between Spaceballs' Pizza the Hutt and your worst nightmare.

CACHE (HIDDEN)
A French thriller with Daniel Auteil (great in The Girl on the Bridge and The Closet) and Juilet Binoche, about a man who recieves anonymous videos of himself and mysterious letters. From the looks of it, it seems to be shot on video as well, presumably to bring you closer to the action and give it a documentary-style feel. Looks very interesting.

A SCANNER DARKLY
Here's a marriage of talents that seems almost too good to be true - Richard Linklater, director of my favorite film of the 90's, Before Sunrise, helming an adaptation of a story by Blade Runner author Phillip K. Dick. The cast includes Winona Ryder (I'm so thrilled, I haven't seen her in a film in ages), Robert Downey Jr., Woody Harrelson, and *cough* Keanu Reeves, and the movie is animated in that trippily rotoscoped Waking Life style. Let's hope that it's as good as it sounds.

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