Trailer Blogger

Terminator Salvation: Nick Stahl Is No Edward Furlong

Posted in Action, Adventure, Sci Fi, Thriller by Adam on December 17, 2008
Click to watch the Terminator Salvation trailer at Zuguide.com

Click to watch the Terminator Salvation trailer at Zuguide.com

First, we were supposed to believe Edward Furlong grew up to become Nick Stahl (maybe). Now, we’re supposed to believe that Nick Stahl magically transformed into Christian Bale (I don’t see it). The Terminator franchise may center on time traveling cyborgs and an artificially intelligent computer ushering in the apocalypse so machines can rule the planet, but they could have paid a little more attention to the continuity of their heroes.

I’m all for Batman taking over as John Connor in the upcoming Terminator Salvation, and obviously Furlong reached the apex of his career as a whiny juvenile delinquent who fell in love with Arnold Schwarzenegger in T2, so the weak link here has to be Stahl. Without Stahl’s stint in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, it’s not hard to imagine the Furlong Connor embracing his destiny, working out a little bit, and becoming the machine-killing machine that the Bale Connor appears to be in the new film. But, the Stahl Connor was such a clumsy, uninspiring wimp that he made Claire Danes look tough by comparison. I’d feel much better about the whole thing if they had simply cast someone like Chris Evans in T3. He might not be Laurence Olivier, but at least he would have been the toughest cast member on My So-Called Life.

As it stands, we’ll just have to pretend that the Stahl Connor somehow grew a pair, went through Dark Knight training camp, and came out the other side as the convincing, battle-tested leader of the human resistance. Or, maybe we could just forget about T3 all together.

Highlights of the Terminator Salvation trailer include: 1) A machine grabbing a human out of warehouse like the claw game at the grocery store. 2) Bale shooting a Terminator in the head after landing on it with a helicopter. 3) Robot motorcycles tearing down the highway. 4) Bale striking the “Charlie Sheen in Platoon” pose, while screaming in the rain. And, 5) Bale getting in Sam Worthington’s face and saying, “We’ve been at war since before either of us even existed.” My favorite parts of the trailer are the eerie shots of a lone Terminator standing menacingly in the rain. Terminator Salvation opens May 22, 2009. Check out the Terminator Salvation trailer at Zuguide.com.

Advertisements

The Day the Earth Stood Still: Keanu Takes the Planet Hostage

Posted in Action, Drama, Sci Fi, Thriller by Adam on December 2, 2008
Click to watch The Day the Earth Stood Still trailer

Click to watch The Day the Earth Stood Still trailer

After portraying a kind-hearted, time-traveling dimwit whose rock music leads to the creation of a Utopian society (Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey) and a messianic computer hacker who frees the human race from unconscious slavery using kung fu (The Matrix, The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions), Keanu Reeves decided to stretch his bones and accept a role that would allow him to approach saving the world from a slightly different angle: threatening to eradicate the human race. In the remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still, Reeves plays Klaatu, an alien messenger sent to Earth to assess humankind’s ability to peaceably coexist and reverse the environmental damage they’ve inflicted on the planet. Rather than saving humanity with power chords or martial arts techniques, Reeves must decide whether the earthlings deserve to live, or if their existence poses too great a threat to their planet’s rare ability to sustain complex life.

Not surprisingly, Reeves’ alien impression basically consists of his patented vacant stare combined with his naturally emotionless speaking voice. For someone who grew up listening to Robert Stack narrate thousands of alien abductions on Unsolved Mysteries, this doesn’t exactly strike fear in my heart. Compared to the countless nights I spent dreading the thought of waking up in a distant galaxy strapped to an ice-cold metal table in a room filled with light, doomed to spend the final terrifying hours of my life in intense anguish, listening to Reeves calmly forewarn his human captors that their time is running out has little effect. I mean, the mere fact that he’s willing to sit down and talk means that there’s still a chance for salvation, and, even if things don’t work out, I’m pretty sure there won’t be any probing involved.

Highlights of The Day the Earth Stood Still trailer include: 1) Jennifer Connelly hiding a cell phone in her cleavage. 2) Don Draper (Jon Hamm) pretending to be a NASA scientist. 3) Reeves dryly answering a couple questions while hooked up to a polygraph before telling the man administering the test that he should let him go.  And, 4) Reeves telling Connelly and Jaden Smith (the future Next Karate Kid), “If the Earth dies, you die. If you die, the Earth survives.” My favorite part of the trailer comes near the end when Gort, Reeves’ menacing robot enforcer, is shown for a brief moment with a beam of light coming out of his cyclops-like eye. The Day the Earth Stood Still opens December 12, 2008. Check out The Day the Earth Stood Still trailer at Zuguide.com.

Gran Torino: Clint Eastwood’s Amazing, Grizzled Face

Posted in Action, Drama, Thriller by Adam on November 21, 2008
Click to watch the Gran Torino trailer at Zuguide.com

Click to watch the Gran Torino trailer at Zuguide.com

Clint Eastwood has said that his turn in Gran Torino will be he last as an actor so that he can devote all his time to directing. Knowing that the film would be his last in front of the camera, Eastwood apparently decided to unleash a heightened form of facial acting that is the exact polar opposite of Ben Stiller’s portrayal of Derek Zoolander. In the Gran Torino trailer, Eastwood makes a variety of faces that come within seconds of tearing through the fabric of space time, instantaneously creating a black hole, and ending the universe. There simply has never been a man capable of making a face that shows so much displeasure. It’s really amazing.

In Gran Torino, Eastwood plays an intense, curmudgeonly widower who can’t get along with what’s left of his family and despises the wave of immigrants that has begun to settle in his neighborhood. Eastwood basically hates everyone and everything until he catches his young Hmong neighbor trying to steal his car for a gang initiation. After reluctantly taking the boy under his wing, Eastwood eventually comes out of his shell of hate, connecting with the rest of the boy’s family and protecting them from the gang. I imagine that the some of the most difficult scenes for Eastwood come near the end of the film, where he has to coax some type of smile from his weathered face after spending most of the movie pushing the limits of a soon-to-be legendary hyper-contorted grimace.

Highlights of the Gran Torino trailer include: 1) Eastwood confronting some troublemakers on the street with a voice that sounds like he snacks on gravel. 2) Eastwood looking like he’s going to implode just before kicking his children out of his house for suggesting he move into a retirement home. 3) Eastwood’s elderly, female Hmong neighbor spitting a quart of tobacco juice on the ground in response to Eastwood complaining about all the foreigners moving into the neighborhood. And, 4) Eastwood pulling a rifle on a bunch of gang members and telling them to get off his lawn. My favorite part of the trailer comes near the end when Eastwood beats up a gang member with his bare fists, even though he’s at least 70 years his elder. Gran Torino opens January 16, 2009. Check out the Gran Torino trailer at Zuguide.com.

Jurassic Park: Will Michael Crichton be Preserved in Amber?

Posted in Action, Adventure, Sci Fi, Thriller by Adam on November 5, 2008
Click to watch the Jurassic Park trailer at Zuguide.com

Click to watch the Jurassic Park trailer at Zuguide.com

With the recent passing of author Michael Crichton, my thoughts immediately turned to whether or not he’d want to be cloned and brought back to life like the dinosaurs in his most famous novel/film, Jurassic Park. Now, more than likely, no one will try to replicate his DNA in order to build an extravagant theme park on a tropical island populated with hundreds of Michael Crichtons. But, if the guy spent so much time figuring out how to grow a velociraptor from a couple drops of prehistoric blood locked inside a mosquito’s belly in a piece of amber, you have to think he at least thought about doing the same thing for himself, right? I guess we’ll never know, unless he starts releasing posthumous novels like a sci-fi Tupac.

In honor of Crichton’s numerous contributions to popular literature and entertainment (ER, Congo, Twister, Disclosure, Rising Sun, Sphere, The Lost World), I’ve gone with the obvious choice and selected the Jurassic Park trailer because, more than any of his other works, the novel and the film it inspired are a permanent part of American pop culture. Sure, ER’s been on the air for 14 years, but Jurassic Park is the definitive dinosaur movie and the first film to feature photorealistic CG creatures. So, remember, the next time you’re cursing at some talking chihuahuas under your breath, you can thank Crichton and director Steven Speilberg for starting the trend.

Highlights of the Jurassic Park trailer include: 1) Sam Neill, Laura Dern, and Jeff Goldblum watching a dinosaur hatch from an egg. 2) Neill and Dern seeing living dinosaurs in the wild for the first time. 3) The classic scene where Neill, Joseph Mazzello, and Ariana Richards are trapped in a Ford Explorer and an approaching Tyrannosaurus Rex causes ripples to form on the surface of some cups of water.  And, 4) A terrified Richards looking straight into a T-Rex’s eye, while the flashlight she’s holding causes its pupil to contract. My favorite part of the trailer comes when Samuel L. Jackson prepares to restart Jurassic Park’s security system and tells everyone to “hold onto your butts.” Jurassic Park opened June 11, 1993. Check out the Jurassic Park trailer at Zuguide.com.

Reservation Road: The Film Before the Film that Made Joaquin Phoenix Quit Acting

Posted in Drama, Thriller by Adam on October 31, 2008
Click to watch the Reservation Road trailer at Zuguide.com

Click to watch the Reservation Road trailer at Zuguide.com

In case you hadn’t heard, Joaquin Phoenix (Gladiator, Signs, Walk the Line, We Own the Night) has decided to retire from acting and focus his talents on music. Apparently, after finishing filming on his latest picture, Two Lovers, a romantic drama with Gwyneth Paltrow, Vinessa Shaw, and Isabella Rossellini, Commodus decided that he’s grown weary of pretending to be other people and would rather pretend to be a rock star. No word yet on upcoming tour dates, but Two Lovers is set to be released February 13, 2009, just in time for Valentine’s Day.

As a way of bidding a premature farewell to the most famous actor to ever rock an upper lip birthmark scar, I thought I’d offer up the trailer for Reservation Road, Phoenix’s second to last film. In Reservation Road, Phoenix plays a father whose son in struck and killed by Mark Ruffalo in a hit and run accident. Rushing to get his own son home to ex-wife Mira Sorvino, Ruffalo changes the lives of Phoenix, his wife, Jennifer Connelly, and his daughter, Elle Fanning, forever. But, while Connelly eventually tries to move on from the tragedy, Phoenix becomes obsessed with tracking down his son’s killer. And, in one of the most uncomfortable situations of all-time (not to mention the most obvious case of conflict of interest in human history), Phoenix ends up hiring Ruffalo as his lawyer to make sure the police are actively pursuing the case.

Highlights of the Reservation Road trailer include: 1) Ruffalo debating whether or not to turn himself in to the police, then deciding to cover up his crime. 2) Ruffalo walking into his office and seeing Phoenix sitting on the couch.  3) Phoenix asking Ruffalo what he would want to have happen if someone killed his son. And, 4) Phoenix getting a gun and deciding to take matters into his own hands. My favorite part of the Reservation Road trailer is the beginning, which shows Phoenix and Ruffalo spending quality time with their respective families before everything goes to hell. Reservation Road opened October 19, 2007. Check out the Reservation Road trailer at Zuguide.com.

Max Payne: Mark Wahlberg Takes a Dive

Posted in Action, Based on a Video Game, Crime, Drama, Fantasy, Thriller by Adam on October 17, 2008
Click to watch the Max Payne trailer at Zuguide.com

Click to watch the Max Payne trailer at Zuguide.com

Fresh off leading M. Night Shyamalan’s latest stinker, The Happening, and recently taking exception to Andy Samberg’s impression of him on SNL, Mark Wahlberg has decided to silence the critics by appearing as Max Payne in the upcoming film Max Payne, based on the video game Max Payne. I’m going to go out on a limb and say this might not be the remedy Wahlberg was looking for. While Max Payne was popular in its day, that day was seven years ago, and the era of the video game adaptation has, thankfully, given way to the era of the graphic novel adaptation. With Wahlberg admitting in an interview that he’s never even played the game, it appears as though they’re not going to play up the gamer angle and instead market it like any other fantasy crime drama. Downplaying the video game connection might not be a bad idea, but that doesn’t change the fact that no one cares about this movie. Let’s hope for Wahlberg’s sake that Max Payne goes away quietly and The Lovely Bones, his upcoming collaboration with director Peter Jackson, helps him get back some credibility. If all else fails, he can always ask himself to make a permanent cameo on Entourage.

Highlights of the Max Payne trailer include: 1) Wahlberg’s opening voiceover, especially if you watch the trailer right after the SNL clip. 2) Wahlberg running, diving, and shooting his gun, just like in the Max Payne video game.  3) Mila Kunis (That ’70s Show, Forgetting Sarah Marshall) shooting a machine gun. And, 4) A large, winged demon (a drug induced hallucination?) dragging a man out of a window by his shoulders. My favorite part of the trailer is seeing Jamie Hector, and hearing his fake Caribbean accent, because it reminds me how much I’m going to miss Marlo Stanfield (The Wire). Max Payne opens October 17, 2008. Check out the Max Payne trailer at Zuguide.com.

Quantum of Solace: James Bond Grieves by Playing the Field

Posted in Action, Adventure, Thriller by Adam on October 9, 2008
Click to watch the Quantum of Solace trailer at Zuguide.com

Click to watch the Quantum of Solace trailer at Zuguide.com

The new James Bond film, Quantum of Solace, begins right after Daniel Craig watches Eva Green drown in an elevator at the end of Casino Royale. Rather than take the time to adequately process his loss, Craig immediately sets out on a revenge mission to vanquish the man (Jesper Christensen) and the organization (Quantum) responsible for Green’s death. While his investigation eventually leads him to discover that Mathieu Amalric (Munich, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) is planning to help overthrow the Bolivian government and gain control of the country’s water supply, Craig’s main objective seems to be honoring his lost love by bedding both Olga Kurylenko and Gemma Arterton within a 24 hour period. Though this effort may be heartless and cold, Craig’s ability to put his fidelity behind him while still remaining hellbent on vengeance shows a mastery of emotional compartmentalization that proves that, although he may be blond, Craig is a true Bond, through and through.

Highlights of the Quantum of Solace trailer include: 1) Craig wryly suggesting that someone wants Kurylenko dead and then using his lightning-fast reflexes to prevent her from shooting him in the head. 2) Craig checking out Arterton as he walks down a set of stairs with Kurylenko (pictured above). 3) Craig and an attacker falling out a window, through a glass roof, and onto a set of scaffolding, with Craig barely catching himself before falling to his doom. 4) Craig once again using his parkour skills to jump over cars, across rooftops, and through a skylight at full speed. And, 5) Craig executing death-defying stunts on land (Aston Martin and motorcycle), in the air (WWII-era Douglas DC-3 airplane), and at sea (speedboat). My favorite part of the trailer comes near the end when Craig can briefly be seen fighting for his life by swinging a shoe at an opponent. Quantum of Solace opens November 14, 2008. Check out the Quantum of Solace trailer at Zuguide.com.

Body of Lies: Leonardo and the Fat Man

Posted in Action, Drama, Thriller by Adam on October 3, 2008
Click to watch the Body of Lies trailer at Zuguide.com

Click to watch the Body of Lies trailer at Zuguide.com

Even though they’re both working for the CIA, Leonardo DiCaprio and Russell Crowe find themselves at odds in their upcoming film Body of Lies. While DiCaprio is out risking his neck trying to infiltrate a major terrorist network in Jordan, Crowe, his superior, is safely out of harm’s way, taking credit for all the hard work. And, to make matters worse, besides being a manipulative, power-hungry bastard, Crowe is a fat tub (he reportedly gained 63 pounds for the role). I imagine that going into Body of Lies, Crowe lobbied pretty hard to convince director Ridley Scott, whom he’s working with for the fourth time (Gladiator, A Good Year, American Gangster), that his character needed to be on the large side to be a convincing jerk. Even though I don’t see this as a Raging Bull type situation and believe Crowe mostly wanted to stuff his face for six months, I have to admit that Crowe’s distended belly and bad wig make the idea of an even confrontation with DiCaprio a little more believable — because, even with his fancy handgun, there’s no way Romeo could take out Maximus in his prime.

The Body of Lies trailer begins with Crowe talking about the realities of a global war, while satellite images and wide-angle shots of an unnamed Middle Eastern city are shown. We then see a special forces unit moving into position just before a man sets of a bomb with a cell phone in a busy shopping area. Shifting to Washington, D.C., Crowe offers a bleak warning about the end our way of life, while, elsewhere, DiCaprio calls out Crowe for being worthless without the work he does on the ground. After a quick shot of a car bomb exploding, the trailer transitions to DiCaprio preparing for a mission and then engaging in a gun battle while hanging from the side of an SUV. In the next scene, we see the CIA tracking DiCaprio with a satellite, as Crowe sits on a sailboat docked next to his house and shovels cereal into his mouth.  In the remainder of the trailer, we’re introduced to Mark Strong, the shady head of Jordan’s covert operations, and watch as DiCaprio’s cover is blown and Crowe does nothing to help him, setting up a final confrontation. My favorite part of the trailer comes when Crowe’s wife finds him talking on the phone outside his home at 6am and Crowe, who’s wearing a bathrobe, explains that he’s “saving civilization.” Body of Lies opens October 10, 2008. Check out the Body of Lies trailer at Zuguide.com.

Blindness: The Sighted Leading the Blind

Posted in Drama, Thriller by Adam on September 25, 2008
Click to watch the Blindness trailer at Zuguide.com

Click to watch the Blindness trailer at Zuguide.com

In her upcoming film Blindness, Julianne Moore once again finds herself at the center of an unexplained pandemic. Instead of acting as the leader of an underground resistance group who kidnaps Clive Owen so that he can escort the only pregnant woman in the world to safety (Children of Men), this time Moore is the only person with sight living in a lawless, quarantined hospital under the tyrannical control of Gael Garcia Bernal, who has gone blind along with most of the rest of the world. Keeping her non-affliction as quiet as possible, it’s up to Moore to become a five sense-wielding hero and lead a group of “good” blind people to freedom.

To prepare for the inevitable outbreak of worldwide blindness, I recommend focused practice. This can be as basic as turning out all the lights in your house and trying to make it to a specific room without breaking a toe, knocking over lamp, or falling down the stairs. But, in order to actually be able to leave your home when the crisis strikes, more drastic measures will be required. The most logical plan would be for the government to create a special agency with the singular purpose of building a national network of obstacle courses featuring the demanding physical challenges of the American Gladiators’ Eliminator and the unpredictable, super-sloppy mess factor of Double Dare. The only problem is that the prospect of such an awesome way of preparing for blindness could lead to someone actually developing a way to turn people blind, so really it’s a double-edged sword.

The Blindness trailer begins with the sound of bells and morning rush hour traffic. We then see Dr. Mark Ruffalo examining a man who has inexplicably gone blind. After calling a colleague for his/her opinion on this bizarre occurrence, Ruffalo himself loses his sight while looking through books on his bookshelf. Making his way to the bathroom, Ruffalo tells Moore, his wife, that the patient must have infected him, but she can’t understand how it’s possible. The scene then shifts to Sandra Oh, the newly blind US Minister of Health, making a statement to the country about the frightening epidemic, which leads to an all-out quarantine of the afflicted. As the quarantine takes effect, Moore follows Ruffalo as he is loaded onto an ambulance and insists that she be taken as well, even though she has not gone blind. Arriving at a stark, highly-guarded hospital, Ruffalo and Moore meet an eye-patched Danny Glover, who explains that the compund has descended into chaos. Abandoned and left to fend for themselves, the blind eventually turn on one another, with Bernal declaring himself leader of the facilities and taking control of its food supply. The rest of the trailer features a montage detailing how Moore becomes a reluctant leader, facing off against Bernal to help innocent people survive. My favorite part of the trailer is when Bernal says he won’t forget Moore’s voice and she reveals that she won’t forget his face. Blindness opens October 3, 2008. Check out the Blindness trailer at Zuguide.com.

Eagle Eye: The Most Annoying Prank Call Ever

Posted in Drama, Thriller by Adam on September 17, 2008
Click to watch the Eagle Eye trailer at Zuguide.com

Click to watch the Eagle Eye trailer at Zuguide.com

Following in the footsteps of Chris Evans (Cellular) and Colin Farrell (Phone Booth), Shia LaBeouf has decided to take a break from hanging out with Indiana Jones and the Transformers to get bossed around in his own spine-tingling, phone-based thriller, Eagle Eye. Instead of trying to rescue a kidnapped Kim Basinger or being held hostage by Kiefer Sutherland with a sniper rifle, LaBeouf and costar Michele Monaghan are forced to burn through their anytime minutes by an unseen but seemingly all-knowing female voice who has framed them as terrorists. Under constant surveillance and the threat of death, LaBeouf and Monaghan are thrust into a political assassination plot and must do whatever the woman on the other end of the line says.

The Eagle Eye trailer opens with LaBeouf hustling his friends, including Turtle from Entourage, in a back room poker game. Returning home to his modest apartment, LaBeouf is surprised to find it stacked to the ceiling with guns, ammo, explosives, and suspicious drawings/schematics. This is when his cell phone rings and a woman’s voice tells him he has 30 seconds to flee before the FBI swoops in. Slow to react, LaBeouf is captured and finds his claim of complete innocence met with sarcasm by a thoroughly unamused Billy Bob Thornton. Meanwhile, Monaghan receives a threatening call of her own, explaining that her son has been kidnapped as video of him is shown on TVs in a window display. The unseen woman then hacks into LaBeouf’s “one phone call” just before a runaway crane destroys the side of the building where he is being held. Coerced into jumping onto the subway tracks below by the scrolling marquee on the building across the street, LaBeouf then meets up with Monaghan, and the two speed off through the city in a car that has been left for them. While Thornton and Rosario Dawson scramble to track them down, LaBeouf and Monaghan find themselves at the unseen woman’s mercy and must do her every bidding, including robbing an armored truck with shotguns.

My favorite part of the Eagle Eye trailer comes at the end when Rosario Dawson asks, “What if it’s a decoy to distract us from something 50 times bigger?” Why not 10 or 100 times bigger? It’s likely I’ll never know. Eagle Eye opens September 26, 2008. Check out the Eagle Eye trailer at Zuguide.com.