"Promise me you'll take care of him over there." Saban Films has unveiled an official US trailer for an indie war drama titled The Yellow Birds, which first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival last year (not this year). This is the second film from director Alexandre Moors, who last made the acclaimed Blue Caprice. The film follows Brandon Bartle, played by Alden Ehrenreich, and the difficulties he faces in keeping his humanity, his urge to survive and his friend Murph, played by Tye Sheridan, alive during the war in Iraq, as well as his life and struggles with his memories of the war after he comes back to Virginia. The cast includes Jennifer Aniston, Toni Collette, Jason Patric, Jack Huston, Lee Tergesen, and Robert Pralgo. Yet another one of these Iraq war films about how bad it is. This looks intense and very emotional.
"What are you experiencing?" Minds Eye has released an official trailer for indie action-thriller Distorted, the latest from director Rob W. King, who also made the very cheesy sci-fi film The Humanity Bureau with Nicolas Cage. This film stars Christina Ricci as a woman with biopolar disorder who moves into a "smart apartment" with her husband. But they soon suspect something is up, and realize that the owner is using the residents as unwitting guinea pigs for a "synthetic telepathy'" brainwashing plot. John Cusack co-stars, including Brendan Fletcher, Vicellous Shannon, Nicole Anthony, Oliver Rice, Gigi Jackman, and Maja Milkovich. This seems like it was a cool pitch at first, but the film itself looks boring and forgettable.
"You can't allow yourself to be captured." IFC Films has debuted an official trailer for an indie true story film titled The Catcher Was a Spy, the latest from director Ben Lewin (The Sessions, Please Stand By). This first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, but the reviews were bad. The Catcher Was a Spy tells the story of Morris "Moe" Berg, played by Paul Rudd, the Major League Baseball player, Ivy League graduate, attorney and top-secret spy who helped the US defeat Nazi Germany in the race to build the atomic bomb. That's quite a pitch, but it doesn't seem this will live up to that hype. The impressive cast includes Jeff Daniels, Mark Strong, Sienna Miller, Guy Pearce, Paul Giamatti, and Hiroyuki Sanada. Featuring a score by Howard Shore (which might be the most exciting part?). I'm always curious about WWII films, and this has my attention. It looks better than what I heard at Sundance, at least. Enjoy.
"I think I might be your daughter Brooke." Samuel Goldwyn Films has debuted the trailer for indie drama Nancy, from writer/director Christina Choe making her feature debut. This premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year to mixed reviews, and this trailer will give you a good idea why. Nancy stars the immensely talented Andrea Riseborough as a troubled, fragile young women who suddenly believes she is the long lost missing daughter of two parents from another state. She meets them and begins to feel at home, but things are not exactly right. This is not based on any particular real person, but it is inspired by true stories of impersonation. The full cast includes J. Smith-Cameron, Ann Dowd, John Leguizamo, and Steve Buscemi. Riseborough is excellent in this, as always, and the film brings up some intriguing questions about identity and personality. But it didn't leave much of a strong impression on me. Take a look.
"What do the police want with you?" Neon has released the first trailer for an indie drama titled Monsters and Men, from writer/director Reinaldo Marcus Green, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year. The film is a modern look at racism, from all different sides, telling three distinct stories set in/around New York City (where Green was born and raised). One story follows a kid who gets in trouble when he films the police shooting an unarmed black man on the street, the next story follows a black police officer dealing with racism, and the last follows a kid with major league baseball prospects deciding whether to become an activist against his family's wishes. The ensemble cast features John David Washington, Anthony Ramos, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Rob Morgan, Chanté Adams, Nicole Beharie, Jasmine Cephas Jones, and Cara Buono. It's a very powerful, stirring film with a lot to say about society today.
"We had, like, a real connection." Netflix has debuted a trailer for a comedy titled Ibiza, originally known as I'm in Love with the DJ while filming. This unfortunately looks absolutely awful, as cheesy and cliche as it gets. The super-obvious, we've-seen-this-100-times story involves an overworked woman who takes a trip to Barcelona, but then decides to chase a "hot DJ" to Ibiza for one of the best adventures of her life. She's joined by two of her friends, and stupid stuff happens, of course. Because it always does in comedies like this. Gillian Jacobs stars, with Vanessa Bayer, Phoebe Robinson, and Richard Madden. Have fun.
"We shall have such great adventures together." Another trailer has debuted for Terry Gilliam's long-lost, long-awaited, highly anticipated film The Man Who Killed Don Quixote. It's currently set to premiere at the Cannes Film Festival, however the festival released a strongly-worded statement today (a coincidence but timing makes sense) about the legal battle it's stuck in - and that it might not premiere if a judge decides otherwise. This new trailer follows the first teaser trailer a few weeks ago, and it contains footage of Driver filming his version of a Quixote movie as well. This film is about an advertising executive who jumps back & forth in time between 21st century London and 17th century La Mancha, where Don Quixote mistakes him for Sancho. Starring Jonathan Pryce as Don Quixote, and Adam Driver as Toby, with Olga Kurylenko, Stellan Skarsgård, Rossy de Palma, Óscar Jaenada, Jordi Mollà, Jason Watkins, Sergi López. I think this looks very amusing, and hopefully entertaining, only time will tell. You never know with Gilliam.
"All I want to do is just be a kid." Gravitas Ventures has released an official trailer for an indie coming-of-age film titled All Summers End, from new director Kyle Wilamowski, making his feature debut. This indie film is about a boy, played by Tye Sheridan (from Mud, X-Men: Apocalypse, Ready Player One) who falls in love with a girl one summer, played by Kaitlyn Dever (from Short Term 12, Detroit). But he also has to deal with his guilty conscience after his role in a prank gone wrong. The film also stars Pablo Schreiber, Austin Abrams, Annabeth Gish, Ryan Lee, Paula Malcomson, and Bill Sage. Not bad. This looks pretty much exactly as it sounds, an emotional coming-of-age indie flick, so give it a look if you're curious.
"You're a very special person." Amazon Studios has revealed a second trailer for Gus Van Sant's film Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far on Foot, which premiered at the Sundance and Berlin Film Festivals earlier this year. Based on John Callahan's memoir, the story follows a Portland slacker who nearly loses his life in a car accident, and lives in wheelchair after, becoming obsessed with drinking. He tries to give up alcohol and figure out how to live a better life, discovering a love for drawing "edgy, irreverent" newspaper cartoons. Joaquin Phoenix stars as John Callahan, and the cast includes Rooney Mara, Jonah Hill, Beth Ditto, Olivia Hamilton, Udo Kier, Kim Gordon, and Carrie Brownstein. I saw this at Sundance and didn't care much for it, mostly a film about AA and giving up alcohol, if you want that. Jonah Hill is the best part.
"We didn't need to be rescued." Bleecker Street has released the first trailer for Leave No Trace, the new film from Debra Granik (Winter's Bone), which first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year to some rave reviews. Leave No Trace is a story about a father and daughter, living off the grid entirely in the forests of Portland, Oregon. It's a bit similar to Captain Fantastic from a few years ago, but a much more intimate and personal story of this father and his daughter. Ben Foster stars along with newcomer Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie, who is indeed a revelation. The full cast also includes Jeff Kober, Dale Dickey, Isaiah Stone, Dana Millican, and Ayanna Berkshire. This is also heading to the Cannes Film Festival next, and is one of the better films coming out of Sundance this year. Make sure it's on your radar.
"They're always going to have to live with the consequences." A trailer has debuted for an indie film titled Hunting Lands, which is currently playing on the film festival circuit. Hunting Lands is the feature debut of an experienced gaffer named Zack Wilcox, telling a story about a man who dislikes modern society and retreats to find peace and solitude in the wilderness. When he discovers a discarded, beaten woman fighting for her life in the snow, Frank must decide whether to continue to turn his back on society or confront the world he loathes. Marshall Cook stars as Frank, and the cast also includes Joe Raffa, Keyna Reynolds, Kaleb Rittenhouse, and Brooke Mulkins. No surprise the cinematography in this looks gorgeous, but it also looks like an intriguing story reminiscent of Wind River or Leave No Trace. Definitely got my attention.
"Why are you so angry?" "Why are you not angry?" HBO Films has revealed the first official trailer for the indie film The Tale, a controversial but still very remarkable, important film from filmmaker Jennifer Fox. This first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival to rave reviews, with many calling it the best of the festival (including me - it really is a stunningly bold work of cinema). The Tale is the true story of a woman who looks back on her youth and a sexual relationship she had with a man who coerced her into loving him. Laura Dern stars as Jennifer, and Isabelle Nélisse plays her as her younger self. The cast also includes Jason Ritter, Ellen Burstyn, Common, Elizabeth Debicki, Laura Allen, and John Heard. This film is unlike anything before it, and is a very courageous, eye-opening look at sexual abuse. It's going to be one of the most talked about films of the year - for good reason because it's so utterly brilliant. Watch below.