There are few things that excite the Scrivener more than a good trailer. It is the promise of cinematic treasure to be unearthed that leaves the viewer wanting more yet informs just enough to sink the hook in. Cutting and editing together these 60 to 90 second windows into the beating heart of cinema are worth shining a light on weekly. That is right! The return of Scrivener's most beloved classic posting, The Fine Art of Trailers.
Jimi: All Is By My Side
Release Date: September 26, 2014
A Jimi Hendrix biopic? Interested. It only deals with one intense year in his life ('66-'67)? Intrigued. Hendrix is played by André Benjamin (aka: André 3000)? I'm in. He even nails the mannerisms and tone of his voice. Toss Hayley Atwell and Imogen Poots in there for good measure and you have a recipe for one heck of an interesting movie. I'm okay with not getting a top to bottom look at his life but rather the point in which he went from being an unknown backup guitarist to the precipice of stardom.
Release Date: October 3rd, 2014
This is a big one. It clearly smacks of award-season fodder but I will admit that I have a full on cinematic boner for David Fincher. His past work includes such gems as Se7en, Fight Club, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, etc. So you have a big budget novel adaptation of a crazy bestseller here in Gone Girl. The premise is simple. A man's wife is missing, presumed dead, and the focus slowly turns to him as the prime suspect. It is interesting to note that if you are aware of the source material here you'll find this trailer gives very little if anything away which is a nice change. The usual Fincher aesthetic is on display here with a scipt adapted from the original work by the author, Gillian Flynn, and music by now frequent Fincher collaborators Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. Hell even Tyler Perry is in it not being terrible. The shot, in particular, with the wife's body slowly sinking in a river is downright haunting. I'm excited for this.
Release Date: October 24, 2014
Three things stand out about this movie, or people, I should say. Bill Murray. Melissa McCarthy. Chris O'Dowd. Naomi Watts as a Russian stripper too. It appears, on the surface, to be a a lighter-hearted Bad Santa of sorts that won't be quite as raunchy. I say lighter-hearted as it seems like, maybe, this would have felt a lot more bleak if it had been cut just a bit differently. It feels a bit like we've seen this all before but, then again, Bill Murray is reason enough to care about this.
The Possession of Michael King
Limited Release: August 22nd, 2014
Alright. So we have yet another in the many possession tale movies that have been making the rounds in Hollywood as of late. Michael King (played by Shane Johnson) is an avid non-believer and wants to disprove all this religious hocum once and for all. His way of doing that is having all manner of necromancers, demonologists and practitioners of the dark arts do their worst to him. This is of course goes terribly wrong. It has a very Paranormal Activity feel to it which is (depending on who you ask) a good or bad thing. I'm honestly not sure how I feel about it as I want to see just how far down the Satanic rabbit-hole this one goes but I don't know if I want to make the trip to the cinema just for more of the same old found footage tripe (arguably a part of horror that if done right can be super compelling) crud. Gives away a lot as is the sin of most trailers these days. Editors, please, for the love of whatever.. stop blowing your load in 90 seconds of trailer time and leaving nothing to the imagination when it comes to the actual film.
The Young Ones
Release Date: October 2014
It is a science-fiction western that features a mostly young adult cast along with the always magnificent Michael Shannon. It is is some time in the near future when water is the most precious commodity imaginable and life is really damn hard. The trailer is rather plain in its approach which isn't a bad thing. This has the feel and look of an old-style western: hash landscapes and even harsher men. Right away this grabbed me because it felt so much like the genre I love nearly as much as horror. This is far more John Ford/Sergio Leone than anything else I've seen lately (not that you see much in the way of westerns these days). The sci-fi elements didn't feel out of place in the barren wastes of what the future is presented to be. Nicholas Hoult showed me in Warm Bodies that he's got some chops and if Michael Shannon does anything I'm game. The trailer is a bleak affair did its job well: I'm salivating for more of this dry, brutal land and its people.
Release Date: November 14th, 2014
This is definitely another in the category of big fall movies. Foxcatcher is the true story of Olympic wrestling champion Mark Schultz, his coach John du Pont and his brother, David Schultz. Bennet Miller, director of Moneyball and Capote, is back with what appears to be an extermely physical and possibly very strong performances from Channing Tatum and Steve Carrell (Yes. That is Steve Carrell there.) The will to win is strong with this one and the man behind the hulking brute that is Mark Schultz, coach John du Pont, is a strange and terrifying figure in his own right. It earned a six minute standing ovation from the crowds at Cannes film festival and has a lot of buzz building towards its late fall release. The trailer itself was decidedly curt with that fantastic moment of Tatum psyching himself up before a match. The raw physicality is something I've wanted to see more of from Tatum and I'm glad to see Miller is delivering on that promise. Carrell, who I didn't even recognize at first, wasn't the first choice for the film (Gary Oldman was) but perhaps this is the year Carrell proves he does have considerable dramatic chops as well?
That will be all for this week folks..! Some potential Oscar contenders, demons and westerns. We had it all this week! There are plenty more trailers to find out there but these were the ones this week that truly caught the Scrivener's eye. All credit goes to JoBlo's Trailers and MOVIECLIPSTrailers for providing the footage. See you folks next week for more as the summer movie season rolls on and more releases, tentpole and indie alike, start showing up on the release schedule. Hit me up on Twitter (@ScrivenerJeff), give us a Like on our Facebook page or feel free to yell at me over on Tumblr: CowboysEatingPudding