Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Tim's Trailer Talk, Vol. 12

Barney's Version

Chances of me seeing it: 40%. First off, this trailer is kind of confusingly edited. The first half seems to be the trailer for a straight-up (if somewhat quirky) comedy, then it takes this screeching left turn into a cloying, incredibly earnest romantic drama that I have no more desire to see than I do to clean the toilet at the local gas station with my tongue. I mean, I understand the existence of the dramedy, but normally in a trailer you'll try to mix the two elements rather than just chopping them into completely distinct halves. However, I do like Paul Giamatti and Dustin Hoffman, so I'll still consider it.

Chances of me liking it: 20%. Also, no matter how many movies she does, I will always associate Rosamund Pike exclusively with her villain Miranda Frost from Die Another Day.

Beyond the jump: not one but two movies named Winnie. I shit you not.

Battle: Los Angeles

Chances of me seeing it: 100%. This doesn't look like the sort of movie I'd miss.

Chances of me liking it: 50%. Completely up in the air at this point. If the question were "Chances of it having lots of action, impressive visuals, and Aaron Eckhart?" then I could probably go as high as 97%, but without any dialogue or hint of the central characters it's tough to say whether this movie will be all flash and no substance; all frosting and no cake. The main thing that made District 9 so superb wasn't really the action or the aliens or the special effects but the extremely compelling and well-acted human protagonist at its center. My gut says Battle: Los Angeles won't live up to that, but I'd be happy to be proven wrong.

The Eagle

Chances of me seeing it: 75%. There may be no contemporary movie star I'm more baffled by the celebrity of than Channing Tatum. The man is an incredibly wooden black hole of charisma who kills the screen dead every time he opens his mouth. He makes Sam Worthington looks like Daniel Day-Lewis. In all seriousness, he's the worst. Is there anyone out there who can describe themselves as "a Channing Tatum fan" with a straight face? But I love this Roman shit, so I'll probably see this movie anyway.

Chances of me liking it: 30%. The entire plot of this movie — two men searching for a stolen eagle standard — is contained within the first episode of HBO's Rome. I'm not sure the story jumped out at me as something that demanded feature film treatment, but who knows, maybe it'll be okay. It also might be a piece of shit.

Green Lantern

Chances of me seeing it: 100%. As a pretty reliable rule of thumb, I don't miss any big-budget summer blockbusters without the words Twilight or Shrek in the title. So even though I don't know anything about or give the slightest shit about the Green Lantern (and will experience only smirking amusement at the standard-issue-for-any-comic-adaptation cavalcade of nerds crying that this movie sullies the original story by changing this insignificant detail here and that insignificant detail there), I won't miss this one either.

Chances of me liking it: 60%. I'd normally go half-and-half here, especially since none of the action or visuals or comedy or characters in the trailer jumped out at me as uniquely awesome (in fact, Blake Lively kind of jumped out at me as "Really? Blake Lively is seriously a movie star now?"), but on the other hand it is directed by Martin Campbell, director of three of my favorite movies of all time, GoldenEye, The Mask of Zorro, and Casino Royale. True, he also directed this year's dull Edge of Darkness (which will henceforth be known as Mel Gibson's swan song as a movie star), but I believe in judging a filmmaker by the standard of their best work, so Green Lantern gets a boost.

The Mechanic

Chances of me seeing it: 90%. Now this is much more along proper Jason Statham lines than that dull police procedural Blitz I posted the trailer for a few weeks back. Assassinations and kickin' ass. Add in Ben Foster, who forever earned my love and admiration with his incredibly badass turn in 3:10 to Yuma, and you have a movie that only apocalyptically bad reviews will dissuade me from.

Chances of me liking it: 40%. Not that all Jason Statham action flicks turn out well. But I firmly believe that there is another Transporter 2-level masterpiece lurking somewhere within the man, waiting to be unleashed.

Red Riding Hood

Chances of me seeing it: 10%. It looks to have more elegant and creative visuals and Amanda Seyfried and Gary Oldman are clearly superior to Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson, but still, the essence of Twilight seems to have been carried over by director Catherine Hardwicke into her next film. This trailer just kind of rubs me the wrong way. It looks like an attempt at a twisted fairy tale that instead wound up a rotten fairy tale.

Chances of me liking it: 5%. Nevertheless, I like Amanda Seyfried. Amongst legions of identical soulless blonde automatons invading movie and television screens, she has a unique look and presence. I'm rooting for her to eventually star in a legitimately good post-Mean Girls film (and yeah, I gave a positive review to Jennifer's Body, but that was more a guilty pleasure thing. And a Megan Fox and Amanda Seyfriend making out thing.)

Season of the Witch

Chances of me seeing it: 90%. I ain't gonna lie — I'm gonna see the hell out of this movie. It looks so spectacularly terrible. Nicolas Cage looks a million miles beyond miscast. I devour this fantasy shit. I may have a problem.

Chances of me liking it: 3%. "We're gonna need more holy water."


Chances of me seeing it: 15%. Are you kidding me? Why is this fucking trailer like an hour long? Anyway, I already saw Clint Eastwood's Invictus, so my Nelson Mandela film quota is pretty well filled up for the next, oh, five years, let's say. A man only needs so much Mandela in his life. It doesn't help that this movie looks deathly boring.

Chances of me liking it: 10%. And yes, it fills me with liberal guilt giving my worst trailer writeup of the week to the week's only movie featuring non-white people. But I'm not gonna lie and pretend a boring political biopic doesn't look like a boring political biopic.

Winnie the Pooh

Chances of me seeing it: 0%. The comments on the YouTube video I've embedded seem to consist entirely of (more misspelled and incoherent posts along the lines of) "so nostalgic!" and "that's the way to do it!" and "thank you Disney!", so if you have any personal fondness for Winnie the Pooh maybe you should acquiesce to those and ignore my thoughts on the matter. But I never watched Winnie the Pooh movies or TV shows or read the books or anything at any point in my life, so this just strikes me as a cartoon about a bear aimed at preschoolers and toddlers. I don't really give a shit if it gets a perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes; I'm just not interested. I'll never watch it.

Chances of me liking it: 10%. I know that rating my chances of liking it over my chances of seeing it makes no logical or mathematical sense, but I figure that, if someone bound me to a chair with my eyelids pried open in front of this movie Clockwork Orange-style, maybe I would find it goodhearted and harmless enough. But that ever happening is a real longshot, I gotta say.

Your Highness

Chances of me seeing it: 100%. High fantasy, swords and sorcery, filthy and absurdist humor, and David Gordon Green directing? It's like someone hacked into my brain and downloaded the contents. Awesome. This I must witness. Maybe it'll even erase my memories of Harold Ramis's thematically similar yet completely botched Year One.

Chances of me liking it: 75%. Unlike the Academy, I won't start showering accolades on any movie before I've even watched the damn thing. But mixing the comedic teams behind The Foot Fist Way and Pineapple Express with high fantasy and a budget bodes well for me liking Your Highness, and, to be perfectly honest, Natalie Portman's ass doesn't hurt either.

And the week's winner is: With half of all entries rating 90% or higher on my extremely scientific "Chances of me seeing it" scale, this week has easily the highest batting average of any Tim's Trailer Talk to date. However, one film stands clearly above the crowd by appealing to my exact comedic and aesthetic sensibilities, and that movie is David Gordon Green's Your Highness.

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