Talking Movies

April 12, 2013

Trailer Talk

Filed under: Talking Movies — Fergal Casey @ 1:49 pm
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In the first of an occasional series I round up some trailers for films opening in the next few weeks.

Dead Man Down

Colin Farrell seems to have established an unusual and unenviable pattern whereby he puts in fine supporting performances in big films, great lead performances in small films, and bland lead performances in big films. Bearing that in mind it’s appropriate to be interested in Dead Man Down where Farrell takes the lead in a smallish crime drama. Along for the ride as a gang comes apart while seeking revenge is Terrence Howard, who’s also been doing himself an injustice lately; wasting a very committed turn on Red Tails; and Noomi Rapace; also grabbing a chance for redemption after a bland lead in a big film in Prometheus. The real excitement is that Rapace is reuniting with Niels Arden Oplev, her director on the Swedish Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Expect some gut-wrenching tension before the Hollywood explosions.

The Great Gatsby

The more trailers I see for this film the more concerned/aghast I become. I venerate F Scott Fitzgerald’s masterpiece, and Baz Lurhmann’s choices as revealed in this latest trailer seem to bespeak a totally disastrous adaptation. Leonardo DiCaprio is a good choice to play the enigmatic titular old sport, as is Joel Edgerton as his nemesis Tom Buchanan, but what can they do when faced with Lurhmann’s remarkable inability to handle subtlety? Gatsby is not about swooping thru raucous parties and zeroing in on high camp comedy scenes, and this latest trailer seems to suggest that the entire movie is in thrall to Susan Sontag’s definition of camp as a love of the artificial. Not a single thing onscreen seems physically real, even the actors sort of shimmer in soft focus, so how can their emotions convince?

21 and Over

Will 21 and Over be this year’s Project X or not? It’s hard to tell from the trailer… The Hangover writers Jon Lucas and Scott More, who also scripted The Change-Up, turn director with a raucous comedy. On the eve of an important medical school interview, straight-A college student Jeff Chan Justin Chong is surprised by his two best friends, ambitious Casey (Skylar Austin) and party-loving Miller (Miles Teller), who take him out to celebrate his 21st birthday. The usual humiliation, chaos, over-indulgence and utter debauchery ensues. I’ve slowly realised that I largely despise the American R-rated comedy scene, unless Seth Rogen or Jonah Hill are involved. And it’s because while those two writer/actors are as crude as the rest of Team Apatow or Lucas/Moore they have an unstinting devotion to absurdity which this trailers hints at.

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