New US Trailer for Vibrant Doc About Musician 'Matangi/Maya/M.I.A.'

Matangi/Maya/M.I.A. Trailer

"Music was my medicine. It just blew up so quickly…" Abramorama has released the first official US trailer for a documentary titled Matangi/Maya/M.I.A., a profile of the badass Sri Lankan singer / songwriter / rapper / musician / artist / activist known as M.I.A. Her real name is Mathangi "Maya" Arulpragasam, and this deeply personal film takes us into her life, her childhood, her upbringing, and her story as she becomes famous around the world, and encounters resistance when she starts speaking out against issues that are dear to her. This premiered at the Sundance and Berlin Film Festivals this year, where I first saw it. I wrote in my glowing review: "this seems like a film that is another music documentary about a pop star and her rise to fame and fortune and glory. But it's anything but that. It's actually a much more personal, intimate story of a young woman who wants to bring attention to and raise awareness about very dire problems in the world, and injustices, and do so using the power of the microphone." This is definitely a worth watching doc.

Trailer for Showtime's 'Lynyrd Skynyrd: If I Leave Here Tomorrow' Doc

Lynyrd Skynyrd Doc Trailer

"When I think of Lynyrd Skynyrd, I just think of an outrageously fun time." Showtime has debuted the first official trailer for Lynyrd Skynyrd: If I Leave Here Tomorrow, an extensive documentary about the American rock band, from doc filmmaker Stephen Kijak (Scott Walker: 30 Century Man, Stones in Exile, Jaco, We Are X). This first premiered at the SXSW Film Festival this year, and also played at the Cleveland Film Festival. Featuring rare interviews and never-before-seen archival footage, Lynyrd Skynyrd: If I Leave Here Tomorrow takes viewers on a trip through the history, myth and legend of one of the most iconic American rock bands. The film examines their entire history and success, as well as their tragic ending when a plane crash in 1977 killed three band members and three other passengers, including founding member and lead singer Ronnie Van Zant. Another fascinating, comprehensive rock doc about a classic band. Enjoy.

First Trailer for Corporate Comedy 'Second Act' Starring Jennifer Lopez

Second Act Trailer

"Don't confuse this Facebook thing with who you really are." STX Ent. has debuted the first official trailer for a comedy titled Second Act, the latest feature film from veteran comedy director Peter Segal (Tommy Boy, Anger Management, 50 First Dates, The Longest Yard, Get Smart, Grudge Match). Second Act is about a big box store worker named Maya, played by Jennifer Lopez, who reinvents her life and her life-story and shows Madison Avenue what street smarts can do. My eyes are rolling already just reading this description. Just wait until you see the footage in the trailer, oh yes, it's even worse. The cast includes Milo Ventimiglia, Vanessa Hudgens, Leah Remini, Charlyne Yi, Freddie Stroma, Treat Williams, Dave Foley, and Larry Miller. This is definitely not for me, but maybe some others will perhaps enjoy it.

Full US Trailer for Korean Double Agent Thriller 'The Spy Gone North'

The Spy Gone North Trailer

"His influence in the North is unimaginable." CJ Entertainment has just released a new full-length official trailer for a political thriller titled The Spy Gone North, which first premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in the Midnight section earlier this summer. If you're into political thrillers, this is definitely a must see. The latest from Korean filmmaker Yoon Jong-bin (The Unforgiven, Kundo: Age of the Rampant), the double agent film follows a South Korean spy who infiltrates the North to obtain intelligence on the country's nuclear weapons plans in the mid-1990s. This stars Hwang Jung-min, Lee Sung-min, Cho Jin-woong, and Ju Ji-hoon. The new trailer is as intense and compelling as the first teaser previously, but with even more clarity. This seems like such a sneaky, complex noir thriller and I'm very curious to check it out myself.

Official Trailer for Documentary 'Songwriter' on Musician Ed Sheeran

Songwriter Trailer

"When I first started writing songs they were terrible…" Abramorama & Apple Music have released the first official trailer for a documentary titled Songwriter, a film about the music of popular British musician Ed Sheeran. This film was a last minute addition to the line-up at the Berlin Film Festival earlier this year, but it played to dismal reviews and a very muted, forgettable response. "This personal portrait of the British singer-songwriter, filmed by his cousin Murray Cummings, follows this modest performer’s creative process as he writes a new song from scratch that will entrance millions. From an early-morning jam in the garden to the finished song, from the first chord to the honed lyrics." I don't know about everyone else, but it seems a bit too early to be making a doc about Sheeran, doesn't seem like there's too much of his story to share yet.

Bella Thorne in Trailer for Sci-Fi Supernatural Thriller 'I Still See You'

I Still See You Trailer

"Everyone remembers where they were that day – the day of the event." Lionsgate has debuted an official trailer for a strange new supernatural thriller titled I Still See You, adapted from a novel titled "Break My Heart 1,000 Times", which was the film's original title before this newer, simpler one. I Still See You is the latest from filmmaker Scott Speer (Status Update, Midnight Sun) and it has some intriguing things going on, kind of like ghosts but caused by some weird sci-fi event and then the second half of this throws in a few more twists. Bella Thorne stars as Veronica in I Still See You, along with Richard Harmon, Amy Price-Francis, Hugh Dillon, Shaun Benson, Dave Brown, Thomas Elms, Louis Herthum, and Dermot Mulroney. I will say this caught my attention, for sure, I like the sci-fi/horror mix. I'm curious to see more.

 Posted July 18 in To Watch, Trailer | Comments

First Trailer for Bing Liu's Outstanding Documentary 'Minding the Gap'

Minding the Gap Trailer

"I could seriously be on the verge of having a mental breakdown, but as long as I'm able to go skate, I'm completely fine." Hulu + Magnolia have released the first official trailer for a documentary titled Minding the Gap from director Bing Liu, one of the very best doc films this year. This premiered at the Sundance Film Festival year, where it won a Special Jury Award for Breakthrough Filmmaking; then it went on to play at tons of other film festivals, as shown in one of the title cards in this trailer. "The secret to growing up is that no one really knows what they’re doing. It's in the gap between childhood and adulthood that we find meaning for ourselves." Minding the Gap is about three kids from Illinois, growing up fast and figuring out adult life, all the while cherishing the great freedom of skateboarding. I interviewed Bing Liu at Sundance after seeing the film, and wrote a rave review as well, praising it as "one of the most refreshingly original, engaging docs about growing up in today's America." I cannot recommend this doc enough. Watch below.

Trailer for '93Queen' Doc About Hasidic, All-Female Ambulance Corps

93Queen Trailer

"Hey, you don't want us…? We'll do our own thing!" Abramorama is releasing a documentary this summer titled 93Queen, an impressive and engaging profile of an all-female ambulance corps made up of Hasidic Jewish women from the Borough Park neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York. Director Paula Eiselt explains (via Women and Hollywood): "It is a universal story in a very particular setting about what happens when women feel empowered to make progress in their own communities, on their own terms, in order to move those communities forward." Featuring Rachel "Ruchie" Freier and "The Women of Ezras Nashim". They decided to band together and create their own volunteer EMT corps, and this doc tells their inspiring story.

US Trailer for Rungano Nyoni's 'I Am Not a Witch' Opening September

I Am Not a Witch Trailer

"I used to be like you when I was a kid." Film Movement has debuted a new US trailer for the Zambian film I Am Not a Witch, the second feature from Zambian filmmaker Rungano Nyoni (Nordic Factory). This premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in Directors' Fortnight last year, and went on to play at numerous other festivals including TIFF, Helsinki, London, Mumbai, Busan, Stockholm, and even the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year. I Am Not a Witch is about a young girl who is accused of being a witch, and she ends up stuck with a group of other outcast women working in the desert. But as the title says, of course she is not a witch. The film stars Maggie Mulubwa as Shula, along with a vibrant cast of local actors. If you've been hearing about this one, now is your chance to finally catch it when it opens in theaters this September.

New Trailer for Robert Zemeckis' 'Welcome to Marwen' with Steve Carell

Welcome to Marwen Trailer

"This Christmas, to dream is to heal." Universal has released the second official trailer for the new Robert Zemeckis movie, titled Welcome to Marwen, starring Steve Carell as a man who finds solace in WWII miniatures. This is a true story, and many of you may have seen the documentary about Mark Hogancamp already. Carell plays Mark, a victim of an attack who finds a unique and beautiful therapeutic outlet to help him through his recovery process. The cast includes Leslie Mann, Diane Kruger, Merritt Wever, Janelle Monáe, Eiza González, Gwendolyn Christie, Leslie Zemeckis, and Neil Jackson. This new trailer is much better than the first trailer, playing up the emotional side of it, as well as the awkward but lovable charm that Carell brings to this role. This looks like it'll play best with audiences and not for awards.

 Posted July 18 in To Watch, Trailer | Comments

Second Trailer for Muay Thai Film 'A Prayer Before Dawn' from A24

A Prayer Before Dawn Trailer

"Just give me this one chance…" A24 has released a second official trailer for a film titled A Prayer Before Dawn, shot by a French filmmaker in a real Thai prison starring real inmates. This played at the Cannes Film Festival last year, but has been awaiting release from A24 ever since, finally in theaters next month. Based on a true story, the film is about a young English boxer who is thrown into prisons in Thailand, where he fights back and trains to be a competitor in a vicious Muay Thai boxing tournament. Joe Cole stars as Billy Moore, the one white man in this Thai world, who has nothing but boxing. The cast includes Vithaya Pansringarm, Panya Yimmumphai, Nicolas Shake, Pornchanok Mabklang, plus the real Billy Moore in a cameo role. This looks intense and riveting, looking forward to checking it out sometime soon.

First Trailer for Secret WWII Zombie Film 'Overlord' Made at Bad Robot

Overlord Trailer

"A thousand year army…" Paramount has dropped the first official trailer for a movie called Overlord, a secret project from Bad Robot made by Australian filmmaker Julius Avery (Son of a Gun). This project was first rumored to be the "new Cloverfield movie", that could be altered in post-production to fit into that universe. But Paramount has decided to release it as its own movie, sticking to the original script that was filmed. Overlord is about a group of WWII soldiers who end up stuck behind enemy lines after D-Day. They discover the Nazi's secret plans to create more powerful soldiers using supernatural forces. Starring Jovan Adepo, Wyatt Russell, Pilou Asbæk, John Magaro, and Mathilde Ollivier. I'm way, way in for this - especially considering it's coming from Bad Robot, they've been cookin' up something gnarly for us to enjoy.

 Posted July 18 in Sci-Fi, To Watch, Trailer | Comments

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