"He's looking for love." Disneynature has unveiled the first fun trailer for their next feature documentary, titled Penguins, arriving in theaters on Earth Day 2019. It's Disneynature's tradition to always preview their next film a year ahead of release on the Earth Day before, and they're doing that again with this one. Penguins is actually focused on mainly one little penguin, who stands out - an adorable little guy named Steve who joins millions of fellow males in the icy Antarctic spring on a quest to build a suitable nest, find a life partner and start a family. This looks remarkably adorable and so much fun, but that's of course because these filmmakers are experts, by now, at crafting very clever narrative stories around cute animals from this beautiful Earth we live on. So much amazing footage! I just hope it makes us all care more about our planet.
"There is a demon stuck in your skin." Or is it just a tattoo? Freestyle Digital Media has released an official trailer for an indie psychological thriller titled A Good Dream, the feature directorial debut of filmmaker Mahum Jamal, which premiered at a few smaller film festivals last year. The film is a very trippy, fanciful, creative thriller about a girl in her 20s trying to find herself living in New York City. When she suddenly finds herself haunted by a presence, she has trouble distinguishing fiction from reality and falls deeper into a world of her perceptions. Melany Bennett stars as Uma, with a cast including Karim Saleh, Victoria Atkin, and Kayvon Zand. This looks very cool, but I'm not sure how good it will really be - not much buzz around it in any way. Worth a look, especially for the clever animated touches added throughout. See below.
"Open the pod bay doors, HAL." Warner Bros has unveiled a brand new trailer for the 50th anniversary re-release of Stanley Kubrick's seminal sci-fi masterpiece 2001: A Space Odyssey. We've already written about this before, since Christopher Nolan will be presenting a new 70mm print, struck from the original negative, at the Cannes Film Festival this May. After it premieres at the festival, WB will then prepare for a nationwide re-release in theaters all over America. "Kubrick (who co-wrote the screenplay with Arthur C. Clarke) first visits our prehistoric ape-ancestry past, then leaps millennia (via one of the most mind-blowing jump cuts ever) into colonized space, and ultimately whisks astronaut Bowman (Keir Dullea) into uncharted space, perhaps even into immortality." The movie won one Oscar in 1969 for Best Special Visual Effects. Now is your chance to see it again on the big screen. Get hyped with the new trailer (which shows the end!).
"His work was a texture of the city around him." "He was into letting art be itself…" Magnolia Pictures has released an official trailer for a documentary titled Boom for Real, made by director Sara Driver; in full it's: Boom for Real: The Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Basquiat. That title pretty much explains it all - this is a look at famed artist Jean-Michel Basquiat's teenage years, living in New York City, when he shaped his vision before becoming big. Early on, he was known as the street artist "SAMO" (as this trailer explains nicely) living in a tough time in NYC in the 70's and 80's, before becoming the world-famous artist he is known as today, known now by his own original name: Jean-Michel Basquiat. This looks very good, and I think I'm especially fascinated because it has such a specific focus on an artist's early years and what influenced/shaped him into the person he would become. I like this more than showing his entire life story.
"Hell is on the way." Shudder has released an official trailer for a dark horror, thriller titled Downrange, the latest feature from Japanese genre filmmaker Ryuhei Kitamura (of Versus, The Midnight Meat Train, No One Lives, Lupin the Third). The film is about a group of friends who end up the target of a distant, vicious, hidden sniper after they pop a tire driving cross country. The film's cast includes Kelly Connaire, Stephanie Pearson, Rod Hernandez-Farella, Anthony Kirlew, Alexa Yeames, and Jason Tobias. This is basically a terrifying sniper survival movie on a dusty country road with no one around. The shot of the sniper in this trailer is very slick, and the way it builds is intense. Looks like a helluva scary sniper film.
"Stanley assigned Leon to me." Kino Lorber has debuted a trailer for the indie documentary Filmworker, telling the story of "filmworker" and Stanley Kubrick's right-hand man Leon Vitali. This is a MUST see for film geeks and cinephiles, a fascinating look behind-the-scenes. Most probably don't know who Leon Vitali is, that's because he never was in the spotlight at all, but once you see this doc everything will change. Vitali started out as an up-and-coming actor in England, first landing a bigger role in Stanley Kubrick's Barry Lyndon as Lord Bullingdon. From there he gave up everything and devoted his life to Kubrick and started working behind-the-scenes as his right hand man, helping him in everything from editing to directing and so much more. This is a superb doc that is also another rare look at how Kubrick worked, what he was like on sets and how he made his masterpieces. It's an underrated gem, worth a watch whenever you can catch it.
"I can make you happy." "Yes, you can." Lionsgate UK has released the trailer for Rupert Everett's film The Happy Prince, which he not only wrote and directed (and produced), but he also stars in it. Everett plays the infamous, talented writer Oscar Wilde, who was exiled from London at the end of the 1800s after it was discovered that he is gay. He spends most of his time in Paris, drunkenly making a fool of himself. The film's cast includes Colin Firth, Emily Watson, Colin Morgan, Edwin Thomas, Tom Wilkinson, and Anna Chancellor. This premiered at Sundance and played at Berlinale, but unfortunately it's an awful film, not only forgettable but the kind of film you want to scrub from your memory as soon as it's over. So boring and the filmmaking is very bad. I do not recommend this unless you're a really big Oscar Wilde fan.
"Who can hack a human being?" One more trailer for the indie sci-fi film Anon, written and directed by sci-fi storyteller Andrew Niccol (Gattaca, S1m0ne, Lord of War, In Time, The Host). We posted another trailer earlier this year, and a new international trailer this week already. This new US trailer from Netflix presents the story entirely differently - about hackers and hacking our augmented reality, and how one of them is getting away with murders by erasing memories. Clive Owen plays a cop investigating a series of unsolved murders, who meets a mysterious hacker woman known as "The Girl" - Amanda Seyfried. This also stars Colm Feore, Sonya Walger, Mark O'Brien, Joe Pingue, Iddo Goldberg, and Sebastian Pigott. This actually looks good, I'm planning to watch once it's available - starting in early May on Netflix.
"This is you're future, and you are going to win." Netflix has debuted an official trailer for an indie drama titled Candy Jar, from indie director Ben Shelton. This quirky comedy is about dueling high school debate champs who are at odds on just about everything forge ahead with ambitious plans to get into the colleges of their dreams. Of course, even though they're at odds, opposites attract and then sparks fly. Candy Jar stars Sami Gayle (of Vampire Academy, "Blue Bloods") as Lona, and Jacob Latimore (of Sleight, "The Chi") as Bennett, with a cast including Christina Hendricks, Uzo Aduba, Helen Hunt, and Tom Bergeron. This honestly looks fun, though nothing new (see Rocket Science), but I admit I am curious to check it out.
"Don't be who you isn't!" Lionsgate has launched a trailer for the indie buddy comedy Blindspotting, which first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival this year to quite a bit of acclaim. Longtime friends and collaborators, Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal, co-wrote and star in this timely and wildly entertaining story about friendship and the intersection of race and class set against the backdrop of Oakland. Described as "a provocative hometown love letter that glistens with humanity," Diggs stars as a guy trying to finish his last three days of probation without any problems, but his friend keeps getting him into trouble. The film's cast includes Janina Gavankar, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Ethan Embry, Tisha Campbell-Martin, Utkarsh Ambudkar, and Wayne Knight. This was one of my favorites at this year's Sundance, I highly recommend it, a film that shines a mirror on American society, and still makes you laugh at the same time.
"They're tying up loose ends." "Exactly." Sony Pictures has unveiled the first official trailer for the sequel The Equalizer 2, directed by Antoine Fuqua (Olympus Has Fallen, Southpaw, The Magnificent Seven). This is the follow-up to the surprising 2014 action hit The Equalizer, featuring Denzel Washington as Robert "The Equalizer" McCall, based on the 1980s TV series of the same name which originally starred Edward Woodward as McCall. Apparently this is Denzel's first sequel in his career. Aside from Washington, the cast includes Pedro Pascal, Melissa Leo, Jonathan Scarfe, Sakina Jaffrey, Ashton Sanders, Lexie Roth, Caroline Day, as well as Bill Pullman. Does this look better than the first film or not? It's hard to tell, seems like more of the same vengeful justice with a few intense twists. Don't mess with Denzel.
"The old cathedrals often have sublime artworks hidden away, in the darkest corners for only God to see. The same goes for murder…" Whoa. A short teaser trailer has debuted for the latest film from controversial Danish director Lars von Trier, titled The House That Jack Built. After being banned for 8 years, Lars von Trier has finally been allowed to return to the Cannes Film Festival, and his new film will premiere out of competition. The House That Jack Built stars Matt Dillon as the titular Jack, a highly intelligent serial killer. The film follows him for 12 years profiling his murders. Also starring Bruno Ganz, Uma Thurman, Ed Speleers, Siobhan Fallon Hogan, Sofie Gråbøl, Riley Keough, and Yu Ji-tae. It was described by von Trier as a film that celebrates "the idea that life is evil and soulless." Damn, this is going to be dark.