"Fresh and richly intelligent." A new trailer has arrived online for an indie film titled As You Are, which premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival last year to positive reviews (here's my review). I'm glad to see this is finally being released soon, it's a great film. Owen Campbell stars as a teenager caught in a love triangle between his two friends - played by Charlie Heaton and Amandla Stenberg. The cast includes Mary Stuart Masterson, Scott Cohen and John Scurti. This is best to see without knowing too much going in, because the film reveals the truth as the story plays out. The trailer features the song "Appalachian Moon" written and performed by Kevin Reilly, included on the soundtrack. I recommend giving this a look.
"Life doesn't always work out as we plan it." The first official international trailer has debuted for the indie drama Carrie Pilby, an adaptation of Caren Lissner's novel, directed by newcomer Susan Johnson. The film stars talented young actress Bel Powley in her next big follow-up to The Diary of a Teenage Girl, her break out role a few years ago. Powley plays Pilby, an uber intelligent young woman struggling to fit in. The cast includes Jason Ritter, Gabriel Bryne, Nathan Lane, and Vanessa Bayer. This premiered at the Toronto Film Festival last year to mostly positive reviews. This looks like a charming, amusing, super smart comedy about figuring out how intelligence fits in to a dumb world. I want to see this, mostly for Bel Powley.
"It's like it flowed through me. I don't remember painting this." IFC Midnight has unveiled the trailer for a horror film titled The Devil's Candy, a creepy satanic possession tale about a struggling painter who moves into a home in Texas. Ethan Embry stars as the father of a young family who is possessed by satanic forces, creating some freaky artwork. The cast includes Shiri Appleby, Kiara Glasco and Pruitt Taylor Vince. This is from the same filmmaker who made the cult horror hit The Loved Ones, and the film first premiered at festivals a few years ago. It looks intense, though I'm not sure why it took years to be released.
"First big thing in your life you're never going to get over." CBS Films has debuted a trailer for Demetri Martin's feature directorial debut, an indie comedy titled Dean, about a young man trying to figure himself out after his mother passes away. Kevin Kline co-stars as his father, and the full cast includes Gillian Jacobs, Reid Scott, Meryl Hathaway, and Mary Steenburgen. This is described in the marketing as "a comedic and heartfelt tale about a father and son coming to terms with love, loss and everything in between." I really like the music in this trailer, and the quirky hand-drawn title cards are a nice touch. I feel like this would be best seen at a film festival, but it only played at Tribeca last year. Still, looks pretty good.
Even though the first color movies were made over 100 years ago, black & white lived on in Hollywood until the 1960s. The Academy Awards even had a category from 1939 to 1967 under Best Cinematography for black & white films, splitting the section in two. Even now, black & white is still a strong aesthetic / visual choice and some filmmakers use it effectively to tell stories. Some of my favorite recent black & white films are: Frances Ha, Ida, The Artist, Pi, Sin City, The Turin Horse, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, A Field in England, Escape from Tomorrow and Computer Chess. This new video essay from Jack Nugent looks back at film noir in the 40s & 50s to make the case for black and white, even today. It's worth a watch.
"I can't, uh, pay rent with these things…" Marvel Studios has unveiled a teaser trailer for Part 2 of "Team Thor", the video dairies of roommates Thor & Darryl. The very first fan-favorite Thor & Darryl video premiered at Comic-Con last year in Hall H, and received some of the most buzz I've ever heard coming out of the convention. It eventually ended up online a few months later, and it's hilarious. The video diaries are made in the style of "The Office", involving Thor and his friend Darryl, who has a tough job of dealing with the "God of Thunder" as his roomie. I like the footage in this new teaser, it seems like Marvel is happily continuing this series and there may be even more footage beyond just Part 1 & 2. Only time will tell. Enjoy.
"I'm messing with your life." "My life is better with you in it." Warner Bros has debuted a trailer for the adaptation Everything, Everything, a drama about a young woman with a disease that keeps her locked up inside her home. She longs for a boy who lives across the street, and of course they try to get together. Amandla Stenberg, who played Rue in the original The Hunger Games (but is all grown up now), stars as Maddy in the film. The cast includes Nick Robinson as the boy she's in love with, Ana de la Reguera, Anika Noni Rose, and Taylor Hickson. It's based on the book by Nicola Yoon. This looks particularly cheesy and sappy, but that makes sense. It's obvious why Warner Bros released this on Valentine's Day - it looks like a mix between Me Before You and The Space Between Us and Bubble Boy, why not. Give it a look.
"We can find a way out of this…" This is a badass short to watch whenever you get the chance. Brix and the Bitch is an action short film written and directed by Nico Raineau, a friend & fan of the site, and up-and-coming filmmaker. This short has been picking up tons of awards at festivals throughout 2016 and is now available online to watch. It's about a tough woman caught up in an illegal fight club who must fight the one person she refuses to harm in order to escape. Starring Dre Swain and Alex Marshall-Brown. It's best to take a moment and watch this without reading any more about it, you may dig it more than expected.
"Do you two ever get lonely out here?" Lionsgate has released a trailer for an indie thriller titled Isolation, from director Shane Dax Taylor. This based-on-a-true story thriller about "modern day pirates" premiered at one small film festival in 2015 and never went anywhere, but it's finally getting a VOD release this spring. Isolation stars Tricia Helfer and Luke Mably as a couple on a vacation to a quiet part of the Bahamas. One day they wake up to find themselves under attack from a local. The cast includes Dominic Purcell, Marie Avgeropoulos, Claudia Church, Chelsea Edmundson, and Stephen Lang as another gnarly bad guy. Unsurprisingly this looks instantly forgettable, which explains why it took so long to be released.
"The chaos of this world is vast and unknowable. We'd like to think we can understand it. But we can't." Neon has debuted a teaser trailer for the new film from A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night director Ana Lily Amirpour, a dystopian cannibal western thriller titled The Bad Batch. The follow-up to her feature directorial debut follows a woman who drifts through a hostile desert wasteland overrun by cannibals. Suki Waterhouse stars, along with Jason Momoa, Yolonda Ross, Emily O'Brien, Alina Aliluykina, Giovanni Ribisi, Diego Luna, Jim Carrey, plus the one-and-only Keanu Reeves. This premiered at film festivals last fall to mostly very negative reviews, from many people I trust. Jeremy wrote a review from Fantastic Fest saying that it "seems like something of a big step back" for the director. Take a look anyway.
"They created her, but they cannot control her." Paramount has just debuted the second official trailer for Rupert Sanders' live-action Ghost in the Shell movie, based on the original manga series. We've already seen one trailer and the Super Bowl spot, but this new one is even better. Scarlett Johansson stars as "The Major", a "one-of-a-kind human-cyborg hybrid" who leads an elite task force as part of Section 9. She goes on an epic search to find a hacker criminal who wants to destroy all the technology at Hanka Robotics. Also starring Michael Pitt, Juliette Binoche, Michael Wincott, Rila Fukushima, Chin Han, plus filmmaker Takeshi Kitano, Joseph Naufahu, with Pilou Asbæk as Batou. It looks like they're polishing the VFX and it looks great so far. Plus it's awesome to see they're including the tank fight in this. Fire it up.
"Son. This ain't just about you. Like all black men, you have a bullseye on your back." Another new trailer has debuted for the film All Eyez on Me, which we've been writing about since since the first trailer hit last year. The film profiles the life of successful American rapper Tupac "2Pac" Shakur, who has killed in a drive by shooting at the age of 25 in 1996. Demetrius Shipp Jr. plays the late great musician, and the cast includes Danai Gurira, Kat Graham, Annie Ilonzeh, Dominic L. Santana and Keith Robinson. This trailer also features some shots of Jamal Woolard as Biggie. This is a very powerful trailer, and I dig the quote it ends on. "I want the people to know the real story." I'm actually looking forward to seeing this.