Saturday, May 13, 2006

Trailer-Spotting 05/13/06

My apologies for being too busy at the end of last week to write anything up about Chris Daughtry's "American Idol" elimination. I feel deeply ashamed. On the other hand, as much as I'm going to miss Chris (a very little), I'm pleased (a very lot) that if I have to deal with a trio of performances from each singer next week, that three of them are from Katharine.

Anyway, on to a few trailers I watched this afternoon...

Trailer: "Gridiron Gang"
Generated Interest Level (Out of 10): 6
Why: Oooh... It's like "The Longest Yard" only not-so-funny! Is that a good thing? The Rock was so much fun in the cheesy action-fest "Rundown" and so generally mediocre in nearly everything else he's done that it makes you wonder what the guy's learning curve is like. Here, he seems to be playing it entirely straight. Interesting. Despite the obviousness of the "Friday Night Lights" meets "Remember the Titans" meets "Prison Break" narrative, I can see how this could be an entertaining underdog sports movie. Already I'm nervous about the endless string of training montages and tear-filled life lessons, though.

Trailer: "Miami Vice"
Generated Interest Level (Out of 10): 7
Why: After the dialogue-free teaser trailer, this isn't a bad comeback. Why? Because if you didn't know it was called "Miami Vice," you'd just think it was Michael Mann transferring his "Collateral" vibe to Miami for another twisty procedural and if somebody told you Michael Mann was making a gritty cops-n-robbers drama in Miami with Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx, that would probably sound cool to you, right? Exactly. Just keep ignoring the part where it calls itself "Miami Vice" and then forget everything you heard about the partying and cost overruns on the set and just remember that even if Mann is often uneven, he's thus far avoided making a single truly bad movie. I don't get Farrell's mullet, but I'm willing to go with it.

Trailer: "Lady in the Water"
Generated Interest Level (Out of 10): 3
Why: Finally proof that M. Night Shyamalan must tell his kids the most pretentious bedtime stories EVER... I'm of the opinion that if you don't want everybody comparing your movie to "Splash," it's best not to include the line "I hear splashing some nights" in the trailer. However, the rest of this trailer makes it clear that M. Night has something very different from Ron Howard's classic mermaid comedy in mind. I, for one, am actually a good deal less interested in the movie after watching this trailer. The mumbo-jumbo about an alternate world and saving humanity and the weird, barely glimpsed creatures that seem to resemble the porcupine faux-monsters in "The Village" did nothing to captivate my attention. I like Bryce Dallas Howard and Paul Giamatti, but you know what this trailer needs? More Bob Balaban.

Trailer: "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest"
Generated Interest Level (Out of 10): 7
Why: This one has been out for a while, but I hadn't had the time to sit through it yet. The teaser trailer concentrated on Johnny Depp's Jack Sparrow, emphasizing quippy one-liners and mincing. That was a decent start. This is more encouraging, spinning the movie as an action-adventure, accentuating stunts and special effects. However, given that my problem with the first movie was that it was at least 30 minutes longer than it needed to be, I think that this one is already looking prone to overkill. Oh and do you like how Orlando Bloom has barely appeared in either of the two trailers? Remember when Hollywood was convinced that Orlando Bloom was a genuine box office drama? Good times! All Gore Verbinski needs to know is, "Dude, you had me with the shot of Davy Jones playing the organ with his face tentacles. That's gangsta!"

Trailer: "You, Me and Dupree"
Generated Interest Level (Out of 10): 4
Why: More like "Dupree and a Couple Other People," if this trailer is any indication. It's all Owen Wilson all the time, which for me isn't such a good strategy given that my motto involving Wilson Brothers is "A little goes a long way." You've got sex humor, potty humor and more potty humor, but what you don't get is any indication that either Matt Dillon or Kate Hudson are going to do anything amusing in this movie. I feel like this movie and "The Break-Up" are both putting a lot of pressure on Wilson and Vince Vaughn to individually deliver the audiences they drew in "The Wedding Crashers" without taking into consideration that it was the pairing of the two that kept them from getting annoying in that hit. Kate Hudson in clingy underwear, though, is still a reliable draw.

Check out the trailers and let me know if I'm missing something to get psyched about.

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