Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Tim's Trailer Talk, Vol. 17

3 Backyards

Chances of me seeing it: 3%. Showing over two whole minutes of fleeting images without presenting a single coherent theme, story, or idea really only works when the vast majority of images aren't of mundane suburbia. Maybe the actual film is better than the trailer makes it out to be, but god, what an astoundingly boring, formless trailer. You can tell within seconds that it wasn't edited by a professional.

Chances of me liking it: 0.3%. However, I should say that I've enjoyed Elias Koteas's recent big screen resurgence, having seen him in Shutter Island and Let Me In in the last year alone. But however many years go by, however old I get, even if he stars in a future iconic masterpiece (oh shit, I've just acknowledged that I don't believe every cinematic masterpiece was made between the 40s and the 70s and there may even be some yet to come; my critical credibility is shot), I'll always see him as Casey Jones from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. "Two minutes for slashing... two minutes for hooking... and let's not forget my personal favorite: two minutes for high sticking!"

Beyond the jump: Keanu, Christopher Lee, and King Arthur!

Battle: Los Angeles

Chances of me seeing it: 100%. Big ol' honkin' blockbuster. I'll see it.

Chances of me liking it: 50%. I'll reiterate what I said when I posted the first Battle: Los Angeles trailer a couple months back — as pure visual spectacle with the boom boom and the bang bang and the robots and the spaceships, the film looks perfectly satisfactory, which, going by the insanely hyperbolic reception its trailers seem to be getting on various nerd-oriented forums, will probably be enough for lots and lots of people. But what made District 9 so great was only partially the visuals and the action, more so the extremely compelling and brilliantly-acted protagonist at its center and his relationship with the key alien character. This trailer gives not the slightest hint that Battle: Los Angeles is going to have well-drawn characters with meaningful arcs, just lots and lots of action. But I'd be happy to be proven wrong.

Burning Palms

Chances of me seeing it: 20%. Another nonsensical teaser that gives little-to-no indication what the movie's actually about, but it does at least have more personality than the 3 Backyards trailer. A batshit sort of personality, but a personality nonetheless, not to mention the infinitely watchable Zoe Saldana and a fairly ambitious mission statement ("5 TALES THAT WILL MESS YOU UP FOR LIFE"). I guess I might check it out for a laugh if they put it on Netflix Watch Instantly.

Chances of me liking it: 5%. It's apparently from the same screenwriter as Disturbia and Paranormal Activity 2... yeah.


Chances of me seeing it: 8%. And yet another trailer that's mostly disconnected nonsense! This is not a trend I am at all happy or excited about. The other weird thing is that all the critic quotes in this trailer refer to it as a "thriller," when just about everything else makes it out to look like a romance film or a medical drama. I don't know. I can't really muster up an ounce of give a shit for this movie.

Chances of me liking it: 2%.

Henry's Crime

Chances of me seeing it: 50%. Frankly, I'm just relieved as hell to watch a trailer with a tangible, coherently-presented storyline that you could explain to someone else after watching. As recently as a week ago that was the norm, but in these dark days of 3 Backyards, Burning Palms, and Carancho you gotta take every little bit you can get.

Chances of me liking it: 20%. I doubt there's really gonna be that much to it as go heist / bank robbery flicks, and it's always kind of iffy when Keanu is doing an actual acting role in a non-genre movie (although I don't think he's as bad as some websites make him out to be; I'd take Keanu in a second over Channing Tatum in anything), but I do like Vera Farmiga and James Caan. It probably won't be that good, but who knows.

The Housemaid

Chances of me seeing it: 70%. I hope it's not just me when I say that this looks hilariously trashy, like a straight-to-DVD B-movie erotic thriller except with slightly glossier production values and starring Koreans. I mean, I know that here in America we're supposed to pretend every foreign movie that isn't a Hong Kong martial arts flick is the highest of art, but The Housemaid looks like such joyously unapologetic, salacious garbage that I just might check it out.

Chances of me liking it: 10%. I don't usually refer to movies that I expect to be legitimately good as "trashy" or "garbage." But we all know there's a difference between good and watchable.

The Resident

Chances of me seeing it: 10%. Well this looks fuckin' stupid, doesn't it? On the other hand, CHRRRRISSSTOPPHEERRR LEEEEEEEEE

Chances of me liking it: 1%. Did I mention that it's going straight to DVD?

Tornado Alley

Chances of me seeing it: 20%. I've confessed before in Tim's Trailer Talk that I almost never watch documentaries unless they're about political topics, and as impressive as a giant tornado is it's unlikely to change that. But if it got really, really, really good reviews maybe I'd take it into consideration.

Chances of me liking it: 10%. Well, I hated Twister back in the day, but I'm not sure hating Twister indicates a general disinterest in tornados so much as just having a modicum of taste. I guess it depends on how much actual badass tornado footage there is.

And a teaser / behind-the-scenes documentary about Starz' newest TV series —


The first season of Starz' Spartacus: Blood and Sand was last year's single greatest televised guilty pleasure (honestly I'd rank it in my top five TV shows of 2010, period), and it looks like Camelot may give King Arthur a similarly over-the-top treatment, so I'll definitely check it out. I'm curious to see if it'll have the same balls about constantly swerving and killing off major characters, one of the things that made Spartacus so much fun. Well, that, and packing more blood, gore, death, sex, nudity, and vulgar dialogue into any given five minutes than most hard-R feature films do in two hours. Camelot has its work cut out for it if it wants to measure up.

And the week's winner is: Again only counting the films (it's not that I have anything against television — I actually think TV has in many respects surpassed film as a storytelling medium, it's just that they're so structurally different it's tough to compare them), I suppose I'd have to go with Battle: Los Angeles through sheer process of elimination. But if we discount that since I've posted a trailer for it before, the amusing trashiness of The Housemaid best catches my eye.

No comments: