Programming note: This post, along with another one, were scheduled to drop earlier this week while I was out of town and away from Internet connectivity. Since Blogger is just the worst, that didn't happen. Apologies for the lack of content. The move to Wordpress (in the offing) cannot come soon enough...
It's been a while since we've had a trailer worth getting excited about and last week Hollywood decided to make up for that. Wow! I can scarcely remember a week that brought us so many trailers, including several first looks at movies headed to theaters later this year. Let's dive right in, shall we?
Monsters University (June 21) - Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Steve Buscemi
In my mind, Monsters, Inc. is one of Pixar's most underrated films. I honestly think it is one of the studio's more ingenious concepts and the voice talent is impeccable. So while this first look is only a mere teaser trailer, I'm incredibly stoked. Let's just hope University follows in the footsteps of Toy Story 3, not Cars 2.
Hotel Transylvania (September 21) - Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez
I'm not in any way saying that Hotel Transylvania is going to be any good. I am saying that given how miserable Adam Sandler's last...like...10 movies have been, it can't hurt to try something just a little bit different. If nothing else, I think this is a decent idea and that, too, is a departure from the typical Sandler movie.
Taken 2 (October 5) - Liam Neeson, Framke Janssen, Maggie Grace
Hey, you know what's awesome? Liam Neeson beating people up. I'm surprised that hasn't been turned into a Netflix genre. "Netflix recommends 'Liam Neeson Beating People Up Movies' based on your interest in everything that is awesome." The first Taken took Neeson to all new heights of bossery and it remains one of the more enjoyable films I have ever seen in a theater. I expect this sequel to crank that fun up about 19 notches and that expectation has been confirmed with two lines of dialogue from this trailer. Just watch it. You'll know what I'm talking about.
Dredd (September 21) - Karl Urban, Lena Headey, Olivia Thirlby
There are a large number of people out there who swear by the Judge Dredd comic and desperately want a good big screen adaptation. I'm not so sure this is it. I like Urban but this trailer gives off the decisive stench of a movie that takes itself far too seriously. If it was played more like Taken or The Expendables, I'd be more optimistic. As is...not buying it.
Anna Karenina (November 9) - Keira Knightley, Jude Law, Aaron Johnson
Here's what I think about director Joe Wright: he makes beautiful, well-acted, painstakingly crafted films. But he does not make films for me. Hanna was the his best chance to hook me and despite the many people who loved that film, I found it to be obnoxious and misguided. Anna Karenina falls right in line with Atonement and Pride and Prejudice in that I understand the appeal but it doesn't do anything for me. Looks pretty but I won't be anxiously waiting in line.
The Master (October 12) - Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams
Paul Thomas Anderson gave us a brief look at his first film since 2007's There Will Be Blood a couple of weeks ago and this second teaser trailer is no lengthier nor explanatory than its predecessor. It does, however, introduce us to PSH's religious cult leader who resides at the heart of the film. This could be a tremendous film.
The Dark Knight (July 20) - Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway
Finally, here's the last look at The Dark Knight Rises before it opens in theaters in less than a month. I don't really need to say anything about this one. Can't wait.