"You two seem to be getting on very well…" An official trailer has debuted for a new sci-fi drama titled Zoe and the Astronaut, a super low budget indie film that hasn't played at many festivals yet. The film is the directorial debut of English-Nigerian actor Eke Chukwu, telling the story of a woman with leukemia. One day, a young astronaut crash lands near her home. New to all things on the planet, she spends her last days teaching this astronaut about the wonders of Planet Earth. Oh I'm sure she does. Kirsten Foster stars as Zoe, along with Max Scully, Ian Reddington, Lisa Moorish, Lara Heller, Rob Oldfield, and Mike Fury. This looks like one of those extra campy, cliche love stories filmed without any budget. Take a look.
"Straight-outta-the-gate masterpiece." Now that is some hype. A24 has debuted the second official trailer for the indie festival hit Mid90s, which is actually the feature directorial debut of Oscar nominated actor Jonah Hill. The coming-of-age film is both written and directed by Jonah Hill, and is about a 13-year-old kid living in Los Angeles in the 90s, who spends his summer navigating between his troubled home life and a rambunctious group of new friends that he meets at a skate shop. Sunny Suljic (from The Killing of a Sacred Deer) stars as Stevie, and the cast includes Katherine Waterston, Jerrod Carmichael, Alexa Demie, Jax Malcolm, and Lucas Hedges. This received some rave reviews out of TIFF, as seen quoted in this trailer. From what I've heard, this really is one of the best indie films of the year. Looking forward to it.
"Willy, your book will change the world!" Bleecker Street Films has debuted another official trailer for the indie drama Colette, which first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival this year. Colette is the latest film by filmmaker Wash Westmoreland (Quinceañera, Still Alice) and it stars Keira Knightley as a talented author. She marries a successful Parisian writer, who asks her to help ghost write for him. The novel she writes becomes a huge success, but she struggles to make her name known as the original writer, fighting against gender norms and stereotypes from the time. Also starring Dominic West, Eleanor Tomlinson, Fiona Shaw, Ray Panthaki, Aiysha Hart, Denise Gough, Robert Pugh, and Masayoshi Haneda. Colette is now playing in select US theaters, opening in more cities soon - check your local art house theater.
"I just don't have any coordinates…" Blue Fox Entertainment has revealed the full trailer for a sci-fi thriller titled Solis, from writer/director Carl Strathie making his feature debut after a number of shorts. Following an accident, asteroid mining engineer Troy Holloway wakes to find himself trapped inside an escape pod helplessly idling towards the sun. Now he must endure the horrifying limits, physical and psychological, of human survival. Canadian actor Steven Ogg (most notably playing Trevor Philips from Grand Theft Auto V) stars as Troy, with Alice Lowe voicing Cmdr Roberts. I'm a bit pissed off by the blatant First Man poster ripoff (see below). Thankfully the footage isn't bad, but it's not good either. This definitely looks cheap and is trying so hard to be a mix of Sunshine and Gravity, but nowhere near as good as either. Bad sci-fi is bad.
"Only thing we can do now is get as far out of town as possible." RLJE Films recently debuted another new official US trailer for the the indie thriller Galveston, the latest feature film directed by French actress Mélanie Laurent (of The Adopted, Breathe as well). This originally premiered at the SXSW Film Festival earlier this year, and is Laurent's first American film. Ben Foster stars as Roy, a man on the run after a violent encounter with his boss goes awry. He picks up a prostitute named Raquel, played by Elle Fanning, and decides to take her with him as he tries to escape to Galveston, Texas. The cast includes Lili Reinhart, María Valverde, Beau Bridges, Robert Aramayo, CK McFarland, and Adepero Oduye. Looks like it gets really intense and brutal, with plenty of darkness and emptiness creeping in. Still not sure about this.
"Tell me what it felt like… to be famous!" HBO has debuted the full-length trailer for their feature film My Dinner with Hervé, starring the immensely taelnted Peter Dinklage as the famous French dwarf actor Herve Villechaize, who many will recognize from either The Man with the Golden Gun (as Scaramanga's little henchman Nick Nack) or "Fantasy Island" (as Tattoo). The story is about an evening in Los Angeles in which struggling journalist Danny Tate, as played by Jamie Dornan, is sent to meet and interview Herve. This really happened and, as the story goes, it was "an encounter that will have life-changing consequences for both." You can get a glimpse of that in this trailer. The cast includes Andy Garcia, Mireille Enos, Oona Chaplin, Helena Mattsson, and Harriet Walter. This really looks quite good, I'm pretty excited to watch once it's out. Dinklage really seems to be giving his all playing Herve in this great role. Check it out.
"Never trust the white man." Magnolia Pictures has debuted the first official trailer for an indie drama titled Tyrel, the latest feature from Chilean filmmaker Sebastián Silva (of Crystal Fairy & the Magical Cactus, Magic Magic, Nasty Baby). This premiered at the Sundance Film Festival this year, and it also played at the Seattle and Sydney Film Festivals. The film stars Jason Mitchell as a guy named Tyler, who joins one of his friends for a party at a cabin in the woods. After arriving, he discovers he's the only black guy there and things start to get nerve-wracking. Also starring Christopher Abbott, Nicolas Arze, Roddy Bottum, Michael Cera, Philip Ettinger, Caleb Landry Jones, Michael Zegen, and Ann Dowd. I saw this film at Sundance and didn't really like it. Though it seems like Get Out, it's more like the anti-Get Out. Have fun.
"Are you forgetting somethin'? We're the Sisters Brothers, and we finish the job." Annapurna Pictures has debuted the final official trailer for Jacques Audiard's western The Sisters Brothers, which is playing in theaters in NY & LA now (and more cities later this month). The film won Best Director at the Venice Film Festival, and earned some rave reviews from critics. The film is about two brothers, Eli and Charlie Sisters played by Joaquin Phoenix and John C. Reilly, who are hired to kill a prospector who has stolen from their boss. It's set in Oregon in 1851 and is a dark comedy in addition to being a western thriller, which is a good blend of genres for Audiard (of The Beat That My Heart Skipped, A Prophet, Rust and Bone). The full cast includes Jake Gyllenhaal, Riz Ahmed, Rutger Hauer, Carol Kane, and Rebecca Root. Ride on.
"When will my family get their justice… if not from me?" IFC Films has released the full US trailer for the film Black 47, a gritty thriller set during the Great Irish Famine. This premiered at the Berlin Film Festival, but it got horrible reviews by most critics. Set in 1847, the film follows a hardened Irish Ranger fighting for the British Army who returns to his home, only to discover the famine has destroyed his country and left the people even more vile and ruthless than ever. With little else to live for, he sets a destructive path to avenge his family. James Frencheville (from Animal Kingdom) stars, with Hugo Weaving, Jim Broadbent, Stephen Rea, Freddie Fox, Barry Keoghan, Moe Dunford, Ciaran Grace, and Sarah Greene. I'd like to remind you this film is really bad, bland, forgettable. Thankfully we don't have to talk about it again.
"All your training has lead up to this moment." The first teaser trailer has arrived for a dystopian thriller titled Level 16, which is premiering at Fantastic Fest starting this week (and it will play the Vancouver Film Festival next in October). Here's the pitch: The teenage girls of Vestalis Academy are meticulously trained in the art of being "clean girls," practicing the virtues of perfect femininity. What exactly are they being trained for? Vivien intends to find out. Katie Douglas stars as Vivien, with a cast including Celina Martin, Sara Canning, Peter Outerbridge, Amalia Williamson, Kate Vickery, and Kiana Madeira. This is a very short trailer, but there's some intriguing footage in here. Plenty of mysterious "what's going on?" scenes and more. I'm curious to hear the initial reactions about this out of the festivals, maybe there is something to it.
"See to it you pass through quickly." Archstone Distribution has released the official trailer for an action western thriller titled Big Kill, the latest feature from Texas-born filmmaker Scott Martin (Battle Force). The pitch for this one actually sounds pretty good: A tenderfoot from Philadelphia, two misfit gamblers on the run, and a deadly preacher have a date with destiny in a boom town gone bust called Big Kill. Starring Christoph Sanders, Jason Patric, Michael Pare, Lou Diamond Phillips, Clint Hummel, K.C. Clyde, Stephanie Beran, and Danny Trejo. This ain't no Coen Brothers western, but then again nothing is. It's a nice twist the town is named "Big Kill". This looks like it has some grit, but I'm not too sure about it.
"Maybe relationships aren't supposed to be for love…?" The Orchard has revealed the trailer for an indie romantic comedy titled The New Romantic, from first-time Canadian filmmaker Carly Stone. Jessica Barden (from "Penny Dreadful and "The End of the F***ing World") stars as Blake, a young college senior who decides to become a "sugar baby" and date an older man in exchange for gifts, rather than love. "As she documents the adventure in the hopes of winning a journalism award with a generous cash prize, she sets out on a quest to figure out if society is right to judge these woman and if her own self worth comes with a price." I'm sure we all know what lessons she's going to learn. The cast includes Hayley Law, Brett Dier, Timm Sharp, Avan Jogia, and Camila Mendes. This premiered at SXSW, and it looks spunky and cool.