"Lock down this boat right away!" Saban Films has debuted an official trailer for another one of these super cheesy action movies titled Black Water, which is the feature debut of a cinematographer named Pasha Patriki. The title of the film relates to the setting of the film - a submarine which is actually a CIA black site (meaning: a secret place where deep, dark things happen). The plot involves a deep cover operative who awakens to find himself imprisoned there, and then eventually discovers another prisoner while attempting to escape. The big selling point is that this stars two big action legends: Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren. The rest of the cast features Al Sapienza, Jasmine Waltz, and Patrick Kilpatrick. This looks as bad as it sounds, even with these two guys in it, but maybe it's a fun time with friends & beer.
"When you were a cub… I looked you in the eye and saw no fear." Warner Bros has debuted the first official trailer for the next new Jungle Book movie titled Mowgli, adapted directly from Rudyard Kipling's novel. This is the new movie directed by Andy Serkis that features hybrid motion capture CGI and live-action, a bit like the other Jungle Book from Disney. And coming from Serkis, the master of motion capture, there's no doubt it's going to be amazing. Mowgli stars young newcomer Rohan Chand as Mowgli, with an incredible ensemble cast including Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett, Benedict Cumberbatch, Naomie Harris, Andy Serkis, Matthew Rhys, Freida Pinto, Peter Mullan, Jack Reynor, Eddie Marsan, and Tom Hollander. I had a feeling this would look good, but I didn't think it would look THIS good. Wow. I love the opening voiceover from Bale as Bagheera. It may be the same, but I'm up for another telling of this tale.
"A murder like that only goes unsolved, if the police don't want to solve it." Global Road Entertainment has released the first official trailer for City of Lies, a new investigative thriller from director Brad Furman (of The Lincoln Lawyer, Runner Runner, The Infiltrator). The film is about how the murders of Tupac Shakur and Notorious BIG spark an investigation, following an LAPD detective who has spent two decades trying to solve his biggest case. Johnny Depp stars as Detective Russell Poole, and co-stars with Forest Whitaker, a reporter named Jack Jackson. The full cast includes Toby Huss, Dayton Callie, Neil Brown Jr., Shea Whigham, Xander Berkeley, Melanie Benz, Shamier Anderson, Christian George, and Michael Paré. This looks okay, but doesn't seem like anything more than a standard detective thriller set in LA, even though the crime they've investigating is very well knonw. Might have some slick twists and turns. Check it.
"You always hurt people that you love!" Netflix has unveiled an official trailer for an anthology film titled Lust Stories, telling four different stories about modern romance and love in India. The film is directed by four major directors: Karan Johar, Anurag Kashyap, Zoya Akhtar and Dibakar Banerjee. They previously made the anthology film Bombay Talkies in 2013, and this is the follow-up, giving us a look at the trials and tribulations of love in India. The full cast of Indian actors includes Bhumi Pednekar, Neil Bhoopalam, Kiara Advani, Vicky Kaushal, Neha Dhupia, Manisha Koirala, Sanjay Kapoor, Radhika Apte, Jaideep Ahlawat, and Akash Thosar. This doesn't look that amazing, but I'm curious to see a film about the different sides of love from an entirely different country and culture. Available on Netflix next month.
"A smart film about dumb men." Freestyle Digital Media has debuted an official trailer for an indie comedy titled Bernard and Huey, from director Dan Mirvish (co-founder of the Slamdance Film Festival), which premiered at a few small film festivals last year. The film stars David Koechner and Jim Rash as old friends who reunite, and end up in some fights and arguments, working out drama in their lives. "Bernard and Huey is a timely story of two men behaving badly, and the smart women who rein them in." Sounds like just what we need right now, huh? The film's full cast includes Mae Whitman, Sasha Alexander, Nancy Travis, Bellamy Young, Richard Kind, Eka Darville, Jay Renshaw, and Jake O'Connor. This looks somewhat amusing, but I'm not particularly intrigued by any of the footage included in here. Give it a look.
"Sometimes the search for the truth results in more questions." Sony has put out another new international trailer for the film Searching, from writer/director Aneesh Chaganty, the emotional thriller that takes place entirely on computer screens. This premiered at the Sundance Film Festival under the title Search, and was one of my favorite films of the festival. John Cho stars as the father of a young Korean-American teenager who goes missing, and he frantically searches through her computer and phone in an attempt to find her. The film's small cast includes Debra Messing, Michele La, and Joseph Lee. This is the best computer screen film to date, and it shows the potential for truly authentic and meaningful storytelling using this technique. I'm a very, very big fan of this film and will keep telling everyone to go see it, because it is way better than you're probably expecting. This trailer reveals a lot - potentially too much, so be careful.
"How real is the chatter about Iraq?" "Very." Vertical Entertainment has released the first official trailer for Rob Reiner's new film, an investigative journalism thriller titled Shock and Awe. The film is based on the true events of Knight Ridder journalists who were the only ones who "got it right" in the lead-up to the 2003 Iraq War. They were the only ones skeptical skeptical of President Bush's claim that Iraq's Saddam Hussein has "weapons of mass destruction." James Marsden stars as Warren Strobel, and Woody Harrelson as Jonathan Landay, with a cast including Jessica Biel, Milla Jovovich, Tommy Lee Jones, Rob Reiner himself, and Richard Schiff. This looks like another strong film about the power and importance of good journalism. And you know, I am happier seeing films about journalism instead of more films about the war.
"The world's first super-bio warrior." Lionsgate Premiere has debuted a new official US trailer for the a sci-fi action film from China titled Bleeding Steel, starring Jackie Chan as a hardened special forces agent protecting a young woman at all costs. We featured the first international trailer for this last year, and it already opened in China in December, only now arriving in US theaters this July. The big sci-fi aspect seems to involve a special metallic heart implanted in Chan's character, along with big spaceships and futuristic biomech suits and more weird stuff thrown in. The full cast includes Tess Haubrich, Callan Mulvey, and Damien Garvey. Everything about this looks way too cheesy and over-the-top and absurd, of course. But maybe that's the kind of entertainment some of you are in the mood for now, an escape from the real world.
"Someone out there is killing puppets." OMFG. STX has released the first official red band trailer for The Happytime Murders, an R-rated puppet murder mystery neo-noir movie and it's going to knock your socks off. This has been in the works for a longtime, as it took them a while to get funding and actually make this, since it is so edgy and ridiculous. But it looks awesome! Directed by Jim Henson's son Brian Henson, the film is basically like Who Framed Roger Rabbit but with puppets and even more lewd humor. The full cast mixing live-action actors with puppets includes Melissa McCarthy, Maya Rudolph, Joel McHale, Jimmy O. Yang, Leslie David Baker, Ryan Gaul, and Elizabeth Banks. This looks totally NUTS oh man, I'm so glad they launched with a red band trailer. The gag at the end - wow. Now this is a must watch.
"That's my dog - I want it back." Global Road Entertainment has debuted the first official trailer for Oliver Daly's new movie AXL, or A.X.L., about a giant robot dog that becomes friends with a teenager kid. It's inspired by classic 80's family sci-fi movies like Short Circuit and Flight of the Navigator, adapted directly from Daly's own short film Miles, and is more of a kids movie (or "family movie") than an edgy sci-fi concept or action movie like Michael Bay would make. Alex Neustaedter (from Ithaca, The Tribes of Palos Verdes, "Colony") stars as Miles, along with Becky G, Dorian Kingi (as AXL), Eric Etebari, Niko Guardado, Patricia De Leon, Alex MacNicoll, and Madeline Bertani. This is a cheesy trailer with the music, but I have a feeling this might be a cool film - even though it's meant for younger audiences, seems like good fun.
"There were always a lot of secrets… When you don't resolve things, and you don't deal with things, they never go away…" Roadside Attractions has debuted a full-length trailer for the documentary Whitney, a new film about the life and music of the late Whitney Houston. This doc just premiered at the Cannes Film Festival this week, and is getting good reviews as a comprehensive and revealing examination of her life and struggles. They ask all the questions, and get all the answers, even the tough ones. Whitney directed by the talented doc filmmaker Kevin Macdonald, who explains: "I approached Whitney’s life like a mystery story; why did someone with so much raw talent and beauty self-destruct so publicly and painfully? [Her estate] entrusted me with the 'keys to the vault' while giving me complete freedom to follow the story wherever it went. At [its] heart, Whitney is an intimate family story that reveals a new side to a woman that even her most die-hard fans never knew." This looks very intense and very engaging, perhaps worth a watch.
"You want to make some money here? Use your 'white' voice." Annapurna has debuted a stellar red band trailer for Boots Riley's insanely original, totally crazy film Sorry to Bother You, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival to some wild hype and rave reviews. This trailer is one of the best pitches I've ever seen, with quotes perfectly worked into the footage, and just a small taste of the craziness you'll find in this ingenious film. Lakeith Stanfield stars as a kid in Oakland who lands a telemarketer job and learns he can use his "white voice" to make it all the way to the top of the sales world. The coke-obsessed CEO is played by Armie Hammer. The cast includes Danny Glover, Tessa Thompson, Patton Oswalt, Steven Yeun, Terry Crews, David Cross, Omari Hardwick, Marcella Bragio,Tom Woodruff Jr., Kate Berlant, Jermaine Fowler, Robert Longstreet, and Teresa Navarro. Fire this up and get ready for a wild ride.