Tag Archives: trailers

SHUTTER ISLAND Trailer

from firstshowing.net

Cannes poster, from firstshowing.net

Here’s another one to put on your must-see/must-read list (sorry, Shelley P and Julien, for making your stack so tall!). When Dennis Lehane’s Shutter Island first came out in 2003, I wrote the review below for mysteryinkonline.com. When I heard about Martin Scorsese directing a movie version with that cast (Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Ruffalo, Max von Sydow, Ben Kingsley, Michelle Williams, Patricia Clarkson, Jackie Earle Haley, Emily Mortimer—insane!), I was like a kid who couldn’t sleep on Christmas Eve.

Now the trailer’s here. How crazy, creepy is it? The movie opens October 2 in the U.S. and Canada (Oct. 1 for Shelley P, Oct. 9 for Poncho and Oct. 14 for Julien) but Santa can’t come soon enough!

My 2003 review of the book (no spoilers):

shutter islandA few years ago, Dennis Lehane decided to take a sabbatical from his Patrick Kenzie/Angie Gennaro series to write a different kind of thriller. Lehane has said he wanted to improve his prose instead of relying on his usual minimalist, dialogue-laden style. This change of direction led him to Mystic River, a languidly-paced, character-driven mystery that became a critical and commercial breakthrough for him (and an Oscar-winning Clint Eastwood movie). Now, with his follow-up, Shutter Island, Lehane continues his growth as a sophisticated and insightful writer.

Island takes place in 1954 and follows U.S. Marshals Teddy Daniels and Chuck Aule as they investigate the mysterious disappearance of a mental patient from a maximum security institution for the most violent and insane offenders. This hospital is located on the eponymous island and shelters almost as many secrets as residents. After the marshals’ arrivals, the island is hit by a deadly hurricane which temporarily neutralizes the electric-powered security systems. Daniels and Aule are trapped with escaped criminals, ambiguous doctors possibly dabbling in illegal experiments and a mysterious “67th patient” whose identity no one seems to know. Daniels struggles to uncover the truth about the island’s nefarious activities while struggling with grief from the recent death of his wife (aptly named Dolores, meaning “pains” in Spanish). Daniels may also have a secret agenda for being on the island but the question becomes: Will he and Aule ever get off the island?

First with Mystic River and now with Island, Lehane proves he is definitely moving in the right direction. There are many passages in Island which beautifully demonstrate his insight into the human condition. He can illustrate emotions such as love and sorrow as tangible entities, living things which can lift you off your feet or stab you in the heart. And while his prose has certainly become more eloquent, he has not abandoned his gift for dialogue. The marshals have an easy banter between them and there are touches of humor courtesy of Aule, who functions as the good cop of the duo.

As good as Mystic River was, Shutter Island is even more accomplished, with a plot that’s more complex. Just when the reader thinks he knows where the story is headed, it turns down a surprising path. As many plot twists as Island contains, however, they’re not there just for shock value and nothing else. Each revelation is duly supported by earlier events, making the ending—and the book—a tense and satisfyingly plausible read.

THE TIME TRAVELER’S WIFE Trailer and Poster Revealed (Video)

time

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you might know I’ve been keeping tabs on the movie version of Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife since it’s one of my absolutely favorite books ever. I wrote about it earlier here when a source saw it at a test screening (and about her next novel here).

I’ve since also seen a version that, if it’s not the final cut, must be very close to it. The film moved me deeply—it retains the spirit of the book while having to omit and change some things—but I’ll save a formal review for after seeing the finished product.

Meanwhile, the trailer is out and the one-sheet has been revealed. How gorgeous is that poster? I want to frame one and hang it in my den.

What do you think, TTTW fans? How excited are you? (UPDATE: Read my interview with Hailey & Tatum McCann, who play Alba at different ages in the film.)

SHERLOCK HOLMES Trailer

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I’ve been waiting for this trailer. Not only am I a deep-rooted Sherlock Holmes fan (devoured all the stories, short and long, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in the summer before 7th grade), I think Robert Downey Jr. is one of the best actors currently alive. One’s playing the other? I hyperventilated when I heard the news.

sherlock_holmes_posterAnd now the trailer is here. You have to tell me your first impressions because I’m not sure what to think. It’s all over the place for me. Some of it looks good—the on-location scenery, some of the action, Downey and Jude Law (as Dr. Watson) and Rachel McAdams—but some of it is questionable. Downey’s British accent seems uneven to me and so does the tone. Is it a dark, gothic action thriller or Forgetting Sarah Marshall, as indicated by the nude scenario at the end? (Update: Read review here.)

NINE Trailer with Day-Lewis, Kidman, Cruz and More

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From L: Dench, Cruz, Cotillard, Loren, Ferguson (in front), Kidman, Hudson

I seriously dislike musicals and didn’t like Fellini’s 8 1/2 much, either. But Nine, the musical version of that Italian film coming out this November, is one of the movies I’m most eagerly anticipating this year. Why? First off, Daniel Day-Lewis is in it. That man can do anything and he’ll apparently be singing and dancing here. Can’t wait to see that.

As extra incentive, Nicole Kidman, Sophia Loren, Penelope Cruz, Dame Judi Dench, Marion Cotillard, Kate Hudson and Fergie, er, Stacy Ferguson also show up to display their jazz hands. The title of the movie might as well stand for how many Oscar winners are in the cast.

And they’re all being directed by Rob Marshall, which excites me because I really enjoyed Chicago despite my aforementioned lack of love for the musical. This man turned the usually wooden Richard Gere into a dashing musical performer—imagine what he can do with Day-Lewis—and got Catherine Zeta-Jones an Oscar. Since most cast members this time are already Oscar-winners, how high can they go?

From what I hazily remember about the original, the story is about a director who’s experiencing a creative block while directing his ninth film (8 1/2 because he only co-directed one of the films). Compounding this problem are personal issues he has with the many women in his lives, some in the present and some in the past. And there were a bunch of confusing dream sequences.

Anyway, check out the trailer below and tell me what you think. Fergie’s doing the singing, Kidman’s doing the kissing, Hudson’s doing the booty-shaking and Cruz is doing that really flexible thing with her leg. (UPDATE: See new trailer and hear Kate Hudson & Marion Cotillard sing here.)

Trailer for Mark Burnett’s EXPEDITION AFRICA

I received the following e-mail from my brother Thuy and wanted to share it so I can brag about him (I did get his permission to post it.) He edited and produced the trailer below, as well as several other commercials for Mark Burnett’s new 8-part reality series, Expedition Africa, which starts airing May 31 at 10PM/9C on the History Channel. Check it out—it looks amazing!

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I’ve been busy the past few months working on a launch campaign and theatrical trailer for Executive Producer Mark Burnett’s latest show, Expedition Africa. Burnett is the producer behind tons of shows like Survivor, The Apprentice, to name a few.

You may remember HM Stanley’s quote “Dr. Livingstone, I presume.” This show is about 4 modern-day explorers retracing Stanley‘s journey across Africa 130 years ago to find Dr. David Livingstone. They do so with nothing but a compass and old maps (and I guess a camera crew following them but let’s not go there…ha ha).

The trailer is playing in most cinemas nationwide, before movies like Star Trek and a lot of the other big summer movies. So if you go out and watch a movie, you might see it in surround sound!! Many of the other commercials are airing on various networks, so if you see some of them, they were from me!! Enjoy!


Eat This Up–The JULIE & JULIA Trailer is Here!

2009_julie_and_julia_003I know that’s Meryl Streep in the trailer (see it below) but her voice and look are uncannily like the famous chef’s. I freaked for a moment: “Julia Child is dead! How can she be in this movie?!”

“Based on two true stories,” the feature is about Child finding her calling and a woman named Julie, played by Amy Adams, searching for a purpose in life by cooking her way through one of Child’s cookbooks in one year. The trailer looks so-so, but it’s got Streep and Adams and Stanley Tucci and Jane Lynch and Mary Lynn “Chloe” Rajskub (who has the funniest line in the trailer) so it has to be smart and witty, right?

What do you think? Gonna see it when it comes out August 7? (UPDATE: I went to a screening. See my review here.)

Sneak Peeks at 2009′s Most Anticipated Movies

Happy New Year! Hope you all enjoyed the holidays and had a chance to see some movies. Now that the new year has begun, there’s a whole new slew of films to look forward to. There’s something for everyone (if it’s underlined, click on it to see the trailer):

THE BIG, FAT EXPENSIVE MOVIES

WatchmenWatchmen (March 6, tentatively)—It has a great cast, looks good, I did voice work on it so it’d better make lots of dough. Make sure you see it several times with large groups of friends!

X-Men Origins: Wolverine (May 1)—It’s all about Hugh Jackman. ‘Nuff said.

Star Trek (May 8)—I’m not a Trek fan but it’s directed by J.J. Abrams so we’ll see. If it’s as good as the best episodes of Alias, I’m there.

terminator4-poster1Terminator: Salvation (May 21)—The last installment was not great but Christian Bale is taking over as John Connor so this could be awesome. I’m ready for a full-time kick-ass Connor, as opposed to the whiny, teenager version we’ve had to tolerate for almost two decades.

Avatar (Dec. 18)—No one knows what the funk it’s about but it supposedly has newfangled, groundbreaking FX and James Cameron’s last movie, Titanic, is still the undefeated box office champ so this one won’t be hurting for an audience.

THE PRESTIGE FILMS OVERSTUFFED WITH TALENT

Duplicity (March 20)—Tony Gilroy follows up Michael Clayton by directing Julia Roberts, Clive Owen, Tom Wilkinson and Paul Giamatti (Gilroy must have a clause in his contract that reads “I only direct huge movie stars”) in a spy movie partly filmed in Rome. The trailer looks slick, sexy and funny. I can’t decide which is prettier, Rome or Owen, and it’ll be nice to Roberts in a starring role again. (Read my review here.)

State of Play (April 17)—Based on a BBC series about reporters working with a police detective to solve the murder of a congressman’s mistress. The presence of Helen Mirren makes the trailer look Prime Suspect-ish. The cast also includes Russell Crowe, Ben Affleck, Rachel McAdams, Robin Wright Penn, Viola Davis and Jeff Daniels. (Click here for my review and comparison with the BBC version.)

p-enemiesPublic Enemies (July 1)—Michael Mann directing Johnny Depp as John Dillinger and Christian Bale as Melvin Purvis, plus Oscar-winner Marion Cotillard and Billy Crudup in supporting roles. This is an embarrassment of talents. Plus, how cool is Depp in this photo?!

Shutter Island (Oct. 2)—Martin Scorsese directing Christian Bale…er, Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Ruffalo, Michelle Williams, Patricia Clarkson in an adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s thriller (read my review of the book here). I loved the book and this cast is top-notch so if the movie sucks, it would be quite a feat.

robert-downey-jr-sherlock-holmes-06Sherlock Holmes (Dec. 25)Guy Ritchie directing Robert Downey, Jr. as the infamous detective and Jude Law as Dr. Watson (had no idea Dr. Watson was blond and hot). Rachel McAdams (this year’s female Christian Bale) is also along for the ride. I devoured everything Holmesian as a kid and think RDJ is a foolproof actor when it comes to riveting performances (if not necessarily good films) so this had better be good.

The Lovely Bones (Dec. 11)Peter Jackson steering Rachel Weisz, Susan Sarandon, Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci and Saoirse Ronan (as Susie Salmon) in the adaption of Alice Sebold’s bestseller. Must admit I didn’t love the book but this is a great cast and I love Peter Jackson (I even liked The Frighteners) so I’d have to check this out.

this-side-of-the-truthThe Invention of Lying (formerly known as This Side of the Truth, Sept. 25)—This movie, co-written and co-directed by Ricky Gervais, stars Gervais, Christopher Guest, Jennifer Garner, Tina Fey, Patrick Stewart, Jason Bateman, Rob Lowe and Jeffrey Tambor. Do you need any more info than this? I’m just gonna show up and expect to laugh ’til I crack.

FARE FOR THE LADIES

Bride Wars (this Friday, Jan. 9)—Kate Hudson and Anne Hathaway turn into Bridezillas when they both want the same wedding date at the Plaza in New York. Hudson and Hathaway are talented, charismatic actresses but the trailer is shrieky and Kristen Johnston seems to have all the best lines. Think I’ll pass.

New in Town (Jan. 30)—Renee Zellweger as a businesswoman transplanted from Miami to Minnesota who falls in love with Harry Connick, Jr. The leads are very charming performers but this looks like a big-screen version of Men in Trees and the trailer didn’t offer one laugh. Yikes.

Confessions of a Shopaholic (Feb. 13)—Isla Fisher stars as Becky Bloomwood, the heroine in the series of popular books by Sophie Kinsella. It’s odd that Fisher has to speak in a Yank accent when Becky is British and Fisher is Australian, but she’s funny enough to embody Becky and Hugh Dancy is a great choice as Luke. The leads are supported by the likes of Joan Cusack, John Lithgow, Lynn Redgrave and John Goodman so this could be a smart comedy. (Read my review here.)

The Ugly Truth (July 24)—I can’t stand Katherine Heigl and from the trailer, the movie looks cliched and predictable. It’s rude when studio execs make bad films for women and then say they don’t make money so they don’t have to make more. It’s sad to see the magnetic Gerard Butler wasted in dreck like this. (Read my review here.)

2009_julie_and_julia_001Julie and Julia (Aug. 7)—Meryl Streep stars as Julia Child and Amy Adams is a woman who tries to use all the recipes from one of Child’s cookbooks. Streep is on fire and Adams hasn’t made a false move yet so this could be entertaining. (UPDATE: See my review of this movie here.)

ENTRIES FOR THE KIDDIES

Monsters vs. Aliens (Mar. 27)—From Dreamworks Animation, this is about a woman who gets hit by a meteor and turned into a giant. She then joins other mutants to fight aliens when they attack Earth. I’m hoping the great voice cast—Reese Witherspoon, Hugh Laurie, Paul Rudd, Kiefer Sutherland and Stephen Colbert as President of the United States—will make it more enjoyable than the so-so trailer.

Hannah Montana: The Movie (Apr. 10)—I’ll just say there are worse things impressionable young girls could be obsessed about.

Up (May 29)—Pixar’s latest entry about a curmudgeon who flies off in his house by attaching it to a bunch of balloons. Doesn’t really matter what it’s about; Pixar’s never made a bad film so I’ll line up for this.

2009_where_the_wild_things_are_0031Where the Wild Things Are (Oct. 16)—Spike Jonze is adapting Maurice Sendak’s classic so it’s gotta be trippy. It’s taken a while to come out but the movie stills look more textured and sophisticated than usual kiddie fare so I think it’ll be worth the wait.

FILMS POSTPONED FROM LAST YEAR

He’s Just Not That Into You (Feb. 6)—This has been much delayed plus the entire movie stemmed from one line in a Sex and the City episode so I dunno. The line was funny when originally uttered by Ron Livingston to Cynthia Nixon but now it’s so dated. But the cast is chock full of huge names like Drew Barrymore, Jennifer Connelly, Jennifer Aniston, Ben Affleck, and Scarlett Johansson so there must be some merit in the script, right? Right?

The Soloist (April 24)—My man RDJ and Jamie Foxx in a film based on a true story about an L.A. Times writer who befriends a Julliard-trained but schizophrenic musician living on the streets. It was directed by Joe Wright who’s two for two in my book with Pride and Prejudice and Atonement so I’d watch him go for three.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (July 15)—This has the big death so it promises to be the series’ first tearjerker. David Yates is back as director so I’m excited. Prisoner of Azkaban and Order of the Phoenix are the best so far and since we can’t have Alfonso Cuaron back, I’m happy with Yates.

2008_the_road_003The Road (October 16)—Looks depressing as hell but Mortensen always does compelling work and Charlize Theron, Robert Duvall and Guy Pearce also star so it should be interesting.

What are you looking forward most to seeing? Which sounds like a rental or definite pass altogether? Something not on the list that you’re madly anticipating? Leave a comment and discuss!

(UPDATE: Check out my fall 2009 movie guide here.)

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