"Forget about basketball. It wasn't about basketball anymore…" 1091 has released a full trailer for a sports documentary about basketball player Stephon Marbury. The doc is called A Kid From Coney Island and it premiered at last year's Tribeca Film Festival. For those who don't know, here's his story: "Marbury, now 42, grew up in the housing projects of Coney Island, New York [City], and watched as his three college basketball-playing brothers fail[ed] to make the pros. Eventually, he made his way to the NBA, playing for 12 seasons from 1996 to 2009 for teams including the New York Knicks and the Minnesota Timberwolves. In 2010, Marbury moved to China to play professionally in the Chinese Basketball Association, becoming a six-time All-Star." Not everyone is happy with this choice, but he's an inspiration to many all over the world.
"Overall, life on a baby lamp isn't that exciting… Or maybe – too exciting…!" Pixar has unveiled the trailer for a brand new animated short film that is arriving on Disney+ streaming at the end of this month. Lamp Life is a fun short film that explains where Bo Peep went and the adventures she was involved in before re-appearing in Pixar's Toy Story 4 (released last summer). It sounds like they've got Annie Potts back as the voice of Bo Peep, giving us a look at her life on top of a baby lamp with sheep at her side. It's no surprise this looks wonderful, since Pixar has been making marvelous short films for decades. I'm excited to watch it.
"This is how we fight!" Momentum Pictures has released a new official US trailer for the true story thriller Escape from Pretoria, opening in March (on VOD) at the same time as the UK release. The film is about two white South Africans, imprisoned in 1978 for working covert operations for Nelson Mandela's banned ANC. They attempt to escape from the notorious white man's Pretoria Prison, known as "Robben Island", the same place former President of South Africa Nelson Mandela was imprisoned before. Starring Daniel Radcliffe and Daniel Webber as the two leads, with a cast including Ian Hart, Nathan Page, Stephen Hunter, Mark Leonard Winter, Jeanette Cronin, David Wilson, and Ratidzo Mambo. Based on a true story, of course. This looks as good as it did in the UK trailer, a gripping thriller with an inspiring story.
"The Empire doesn't know we're here. And they never will." While we wait for the official Obi-Wan Kenobi series Lucasfilm is developing (despite rumors it was scrapped, it is still in the works) there's an outstanding fan film to watch. Kenobi is a beautifully realized 18-minute short about Ben Kenobi living on Tatooine. Similar to the upcoming series, the film is about Ben protecting Luke when he's young, living in the desert watching over him from afar. Jamie Costa stars as Kenobi, with a cast including Tommy Snider as Owen Lars, Maxine Phoenix as Beru, Audie Rick as Luke, and James Arnold Taylor as Captain Leegus. This short has a lovely score, some great FX, and a fantastic performance by Costa. Highly recommend watching.
"I heard something…" Neon has released the second trailer for the indie horror film The Lodge, which initially premiered at the Sundance Film Festival one year ago. This highly anticipated film is the follow-up to Goodnight Mommy, from Austrian filmmakers Severin Fiala & Veronika Franz, and is their first English-language feature. A soon-to-be stepmom is snowed in at a lodge with her fiancé's two children near a remote holiday village. Just as relations begin to thaw between the trio, strange and frightening events take place. The horror film stars Richard Armitage, Alicia Silverstone, Riley Keough, Jaeden Lieberher, and Lia McHugh. This earned some rave reviews, but others say it's a bit too similar to Hereditary. Still worth a watch if you're into unsettling horror, and it's a good winter film about kids trapped in a snowed-in lodge.
"She's using her voice in a whole new way." Netflix has unveiled an official trailer for Miss Americana, the documentary about Taylor Swift and her transitional years recently finding her own voice in life. This is premiering at the Sundance Film Festival as one of the Opening Day films this week. It will be available to watch on Netflix at the end of this month, not too long of a wait. The doc "offers a multifaceted window into Swift, her creative process, and her singular experience of being one of the brightest lights on the world's global stage. Showcasing Swift's trademark vulnerability and her fierce intelligence and wit, Wilson captures moments both tender and exhilarating." Sounds & looks like an empowering film about a vibrant musician.
"Rare and fantastic, its raw subject matters echoes in films of the present day…" Oscilloscope Labs has released a new trailer for a long lost film titled Cane River, which has been found and restored to 4K and will be re-released in theaters next month. This "lyrical, visionary film disappeared for decades after Jenkins died suddenly following the film's completion [in 1982], robbing generations of a talented, vibrant new voice in African-American cinema. Available now for the first time in forty years in a brand-new, state-of-the-art 4k restoration." Set in Natchitoches Parish, a free community of color in Louisiana, the film is about the romance between two African-Americans who come from different class backgrounds. Starring Tommye Myrick, Richard Romain, Carol Sutton, and Barbara Tasker. This is definitely a one-of-a-kind film.
"You see that bull… think he just goin crazy, right?" Samuel Goldwyn Films has debuted an official trailer for Bull, an indie drama that premiered at the Cannes Film Festival last year. It also played at a few other festivals including Deauville, Haifa, Stockholm, Ljubljana, and Tallinn Black Nights last year. The first narrative feature made by doc filmmaker Annie Silverstein, Bull is set on the outskirts of Houston, TX in a a near-abandoned subdivision. The story follows a teen reeling from her mom's incarceration, and an aging bullfighter struggling to keep a foothold in the rodeo circuit, who form an unlikely bond and attempt to right their own paths. The film stars Amber Havard, Rob Morgan, Yolonda Ross, Keira Bennett, Karla Garbelotto, Troy Anthony Hogan. This is a really beautiful trailer for what looks to be a powerful film.
"Our oceans sustain all life on Earth — now they need us to protect them." Aardman Animations has made a new short film for Greenpeace titled Turtle Journey, a family roadtrip short about a family of sea turtles heading home and discovering changes on the way back. It's sad what we've done to destroy the oceans. The short is attached to a petition for US audiences to reach out to Evan Bloom, the State Department Director of Ocean and Polar Affairs, to agree to action on the United Nation's plans for an intragovernmental Global Ocean Treaty. Whatever we can do to make difference. The film was created by Greenpeace and Aardman, along with special guests Jim Carter, Olivia Colman, David Harbour, Giovanna Lancellotti, Helen Mirren, and Bella Ramsey. And remember: we can't change the past. But we can demand a better future.
"If you stay with your head underwater, you'll never learn to ride the waves." GKids has released the first official US trailer for the latest anime from beloved Japanese filmmaker Masaaki Yuasa, of the films The Night Is Short Walk on Girl and Lu Over the Wall previously. This already premiered in Japan last summer, and is playing for only one night in the US in theaters before arriving on VOD. This cute romance is about a surfer and firefighter that meet and fall in love. The Japanese title translates to When Riding a Wave, With You, and the film is described as "a deeply emotional new film that applies his trademark visual ingenuity to a tale of romance, grief and self-discovery." It looks spunky and adorable. Featuring the voices of Ryôta Katayose, Rina Kawaei, Honoka Matsumoto, & Kentarô Itô. Reviews say it's "a charming & heartfelt story about loss and clinging to life… [with characters] that may even teach you something about yourself."
"I know that it sounds crazy, okay? I know that it sounds really crazy but it just feels really real." Netflix has unveiled an official trailer for an indie drama titled Horse Girl, which is premiering at the Sundance Film Festival this month - then arriving on Netflix a few weeks later. Directed by Jeff Baena, Horse Girl is a darkly humorous psychological thriller about a woman's search for the truth, "however abstract it may be." Sarah, a rather awkward woman with a fondness for crafts, horses, and supernatural crime shows, finds her increasingly lucid dreams trickling into her waking life. Alison Brie stars, and co-wrote the script; the film was also executive produced by Jay & Mark Duplass. The cast also includes Debby Ryan, John Reynolds, Molly Shannon, John Ortiz, Paul Reiser, and Jay Duplass. Seems like a quirky, compelling little film.
"I'm going to do this my way." Paramount has debuted a second official trailer for The Rhythm Section, an adaptation of the best-selling novel - the first book from the "Stephanie Patrick Thrillers" series by Mark Burnell. The Rhythm Section is described as an international spy thriller about a woman who takes on the identity of an assassin in order to seek out and get revenge on those who orchestrated a plane crash that killed her family. She is trained, then goes out on her own to find them. Blake Lively stars as Stephanie Patrick, along with Jude Law, Max Casella, Daniel Mays, Richard Brake, Raza Jaffrey, Tawfeek Barhom, and Sterling K. Brown. This actually looks pretty damn cool. I've been looking forward to this, and I hope it's as exhilarating as these trailers make it look. And now we know what the title is referencing.