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"There is something wrong with the shoppers!" Screen Media Films has released the official trailer for a horror comedy titled Black Friday, set at a big toy store on Thanksgiving night just before the opening of Black Friday at midnight. And guess who's back at S-Mart! I mean, at "We Love Toys" - Bruce Campbell! Sporting a mighty fine gray mustache in this film (which makes him look like John Cleese in a few of the shots). Story manager Jonathan and his longtime employee Ken soon find them themselves battling against hordes of holiday shoppers that have been turned into monstrous creatures taken over by a parasite hellbent on a murderous rampage. The comedy stars Devon Sawa, Ivana Baquero, Ryan Lee, Stephen Peck, Michael Jai White, plus the one-and-only Bruce Campbell. This isn't the most original concept, but it does look quite fun anyway. The zombie people look mean, the kills look ridiculous and amusing. Shop safe.
"When I saw Clerks, it felt like, 'I belong to this.'" 1091 Pictures has unveiled a trailer for the documentary Clerk, a biopic doc about the life and career of filmmaker Kevin Smith. This originally premiered at the 2021 SXSW Film Festival earlier this year, where they also describe it as a look at the life of "filmmaker and raconteur Kevin Smith." The doc is directed by filmmaker Malcom Ingram (of numerous docs including the Phantom of the Paradise doc Phantom of Winnipeg recently). Clerk spends time with Kevin Smith and looks back at his entire life, his intro into filmmaking, his big break with Clerks (1994), and everything else that has happened since, including the creation of SModcast and his life changing with the arrival of his daughter Harley. This documentary turned out even better than I was expecting (here's my full review) and even if you don't like him, it's hard to watch this and not admire everything he has achieved over the years.
"His memories went straight inside you?" Whoa this looks trippy. Apple has unveiled an official trailer for a sci-fi thriller series titled Dr. Brain, which is debuting in just a few weeks (Nov 4th) on Apple TV+. A surprise series?! Yes, please! Directed by the visionary filmmaker Kim Jee-woon (of A Tale of Two Sisters, A Bittersweet Life, The Good the Bad the Weird, I Saw the Devil, The Age of Shadows), starring Lee Sun-kyun. "Get ready for a mind-bending journey with a genius neuroscientist who navigates through other people's memories in search of the truth." The series is an emotional journey that follows a brain scientist who is obsessive about figuring out new technologies to access the consciousness and memories of the brain. His life goes sideways when his family falls victim to a mysterious accident, and he uses his skills to access memories from his wife's brain to piece together the mystery of what actually happened to his family and why. Also starring Lee You-young, Park Hee-soon, Seo Ji-hye, and Lee Jae-won. This looks amazing, no surprise from Kim Jee-woon, and I'm quite intrigued by the mystery of what's going on with his family.
"The Warren Commission successfully deceived the public." Altitude Films in the UK has unveiled the first official trailer for JFK Revisited: Through The Looking Glass, a new documentary from filmmaker Oliver Stone. This initially premiered at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival earlier this year, and still doesn't have a release date set but we're keeping an eye on it anyway. The doc film is a follow-up to Oliver Stone's 1991 feature JFK, which won two Oscars and was nominated for six others. Even though the government is delaying the release of the JFK files right on the verge of their reveal, Oliver Stone isn't waiting anymore. The film examines more declassified files related to President Kennedy's assassination in a larger context, aiming to shine more light on what really happened in 1963. And it makes the case that compelling evidence proves that the Kennedy case 'conspiracy theory' is now 'conspiracy fact'. Which has been pretty obvious for years already, but he's trying to make us all even more aware with this film. Take a look at the trailer below.
"I knew she would never accept me the way I was." Blue Fox Ent. has released an official trailer for a film called Butter, formerly known as Butter's Final Meal, from English filmmaker Paul A. Kaufman. Not to be confused with that strange butter carving comedy also titled Butter from a few years ago. This premiered at the Cinequest Film Festival last year and is opening in early 2022. "Butter" is a smart, funny high school junior who happens to be obese. He secretly befriends the prettiest girl from his school via social media by pretending to be a jock from another school. As Butter struggles with bullying and self-esteem at school, he plans an incredible social media stunt that will risk his life, but gain him attention and popularity. As the day arrives can he really do it? Alex Kersting stars as "Butter"; he's joined by Mira Sorvino, Mykelti Willliamson, Brian Van Holt, Ravi Patel, Annabeth Gish, McKayley Miller, and Jack Griffo. This looks like a much more earnest and heartfelt story than many other recent bullying films. It's worth a look.
"What's important in life is that we believe in ourselves." Peccadillo Pictures has revealed the official UK trailer for an indie drama from Belgium titled Lola and the Sea, aka Lola vers la Mer in French. This first premiered at a few film festivals back in 2019, and is finally getting a UK release this year. It also stopped by a few other US festivals this year, including Frameline. 18-year-old Lola lives in a foster home with Samir, her only friend. When her mother passes away, her father Phillip makes sure Lola will miss the ceremony. Two years before, he was throwing her out: at the time, Lola was still Lionel. She won't leave her mother alone in this last journey. So they take off together, both unwilling to share a car but determined to take her home. Introducing Magritte Awards (Belgium's Oscars) Most Promising Actress winner Mya Bollaers in her debut. Also with Benoît Magimel. A "tender exploration of family relationships and identity," with music from Culture Club and Four Non Blondes." This looks quite good! I'm very curious about watching it.
"We went and found all these nooks & crannies… Really just got the feeling of being alone, and being out there…" Now playing in theaters worldwide is the epic, incredible Dune, directed by Denis Villeneuve. Actor Jason Momoa stars in the movie as Duncan Idaho, one of the most loyal members of House Atreides and a serious fighter. Much of the film was shot on location, or with practical sets, and most of the desert scenes were filmed in a location called Wadi Rum in the country of Jordan (which he says is "one of the most amazing places"). Momoa has been releasing Dune behind-the-scenes video blogs on his YouTube, and his latest one is called "Inside Dune: Wandering the Desert with My Friends." It is a must see because it's so simple and beautiful, shot on Red and Leica cameras, and takes us further out to this beautiful world we all share on this planet. These videos remind me of the way Jeff Bridges would take photos on set (and sometimes releases a book) and I love that we get to see into this side of filmmaking through Momoa's eyes.
"I've seen what drugged up driving can do… You know what drug I hate the most?" So they finally made a sequel to Team America: World Police! Well, not really. But this is about as close as anyone can get! A Puff Before Dying is an incredible 10-minute marionette short film, made by filmmakers Michael Reich and Mike Pinkney. Apparently this is a real PSA, but I can't find any info on for who - clearly one of the states where marijuana is legal now. (The "Federal Road Safety Foundation" is made up.) A wild night of pot and "drugged-up driving" ends in tragedy for three teenagers that happen to be marionettes. Please don't smoke and drive! Or else this! The voice cast: Annie Mebane, James Kirkland, Lola Blanc, Tashi Condelee, Michael Reich. Wherever this came from, it's amazing, I can't believe it's real. Take a hit and, uh, be safe.
"What do you think will happen when one of us is suddenly gone?" Netflix has debuted an official US trailer for the acclaimed Mexican drama titled Prayers for the Stolen in English, originally known as Noche de Fuego (which translates directly to Night of Fire) in Spanish. This first premiered at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival earlier this year, and recently played at both the New York & London Film Festivals. Prayers for the Stolen is about life in a solitary town nestled in the mountains that is at war, seen through the eyes of three girls on their path to adolescence. "In their own impenetrable universe, magic and joy abound; meanwhile, their mothers train them to flee from those who turn them into slaves or ghosts. But one day, one of the girls doesn't make it to their hideout in time." Starring Mayra Batalla, Ana Cristina Ordóñez González, Marya Membreño, Norma Pablo, Eileen Yáñez, and Memo Villegas. The film seems to jump time, showing the girls once they've become a bit older, and how things have changed and how they're the same.
"Golfing in the winter? The rich don't give a sh*t about the laws of nature." Brainsss!! Available to stream on Screambox now is this Quebecois zombie comedy titled Brain Freeze, which played on opening night at this year's Fantasia Film Festival up in Montreal. If you're in the mood for some zombies this Halloween season, this is an option! It looks better than expected. A fertilizer used in a rich gated community becomes the source of a mutation that turns residents into zombies. Can a teen & his baby sister break free from the quarantined island before turning into grass? Reviews from Fantasia say the film "thaws out zombie formula with smart commentary and humor." Meagan Navarro writes that it wields "its satire in an engaging way that keeps this zombie comedy moving along at a quick and entertaining pace." Starring Iani Bédard, Roy Dupuis, Marianne Fortier, Anne-Élisabeth Bossé, & Claudia Ferri. Some zombie fun from Canada.
"For some, the mountain isn't a goal, but a path." Netflix has revealed the official trailer for the animated film The Summit of the Gods, a French production based on a Japanese manga that's about two Japanese mountain climbers. The film premiered at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival this year, after showing as a "work in progress" at the Annecy Film Festival last year. It's one of my favorite films of the year - I love it so much and it has everything I adore: photography, mountains, Japan, Nepal. Photographer Fukamachi finds a camera that supposedly belongs to George Mallory, a mountaineer who went missing on Mt Everest, and goes on a mountain-climbing adventure with his friend Habu Joji, who also disappeared into the mountains a few years before. The voice cast includes Lazare Herson-Macarel, Eric Herson-Macarel, Damien Boisseau, Elisabeth Ventura, Kylian Rehlinger, François Dunoyer, Philippe Vincent, and Luc Bernard. With an original score by Amine Bouhafa. I'm happy that FirstShowing is quoted in this trailer! It's outstanding and I wrote a glowing review from Cannes about how it's perfect. A must watch film.
"It's about keeping us in our place." Utopia has unveiled an official trailer for The Dilemma of Desire, a documentary about female sexuality from award-winning doc filmmaker Maria Finitzo. This first premiered at festivals last year and is arriving on VOD starting this month. The film explores the work of four women who are shattering myths and lies that women are being told about their sexual desire and their bodies - including artist Sophia Wallace, who challenges long-held ideas of women with her "cliteracy" project, putting front and center the clitoris as fundamental to orgasm. "Dilemma of Desire is a powerful reminder that true equality will come only when we all arrive at a place of understanding and acknowledgement that women are sexual beings, entitled to live their lives fully within the expression of their desire." Yes! More films that explore this topic sensitively and honestly, please. It really does make a difference. Check this out.