Friday, January 4, 2013

Watchin' Trailerz with Doug (Jan. 4)

Because I skipped last week (i.e., holidaze), and because I foolishly thought I wouldn't have to do this column anymore (i.e., apocalypze), I'm a little behind, trailerz-wize. Bear with me as we barrel through a bunch of big-budgeted breviews. #forcedalliteration

This Is the End
Release date: June 14, 2013

This is a red-band trailer, so HEADPHONES UP. Interesting timing with this one -- kinda missed the boat, right? I mean, sure, while 2012 (the film) was a hot property in the months leading up to the end of 2012 (the year), you can now buy it on Amazon for only $5. And this movie ... well, I JUST missed featuring it two weeks ago in my roundup of end-of-world previews. Sometimes (all the time?) I'm the worst (just like the Mayans). But it looks good! Funny, right? Like, Danny McBride (who also [AHEM!] follows us on Twitter) is the best, as usual. And what a cast! While this trailer doesn't show us that much (even though it clocks in at a long 3:09), I look forward to laughing with some old friends next summer. PMA (positive mental attitude).

The Smurfs 2
Release date: July 31, 2013

Wait, are we ABSOLUTELY POSITIVE the world didn't end?

To the Wonder
Release date: April 12, 2013

I thought Terrence Malick's "thing" was waiting, like, a DECADE in between his movies, thereby whipping his legion of mouth-foaming fanboys into a frothy frenzy (ALLITERATION AGAIN!) as they eagerly anticipate the release of his next "masterpiece." Quickly checking his IMDb page, guy's got three movies (in addition to this film) in post-production for 2013. What gives, Monsieur Auteur? Listen (LISTEN) ... I still haven't seen The Tree of Life, despite it burning a hole in my DVR, so perhaps I'm ill-fit to judge this trailer. BUT ... this looks like the same movie. Like a Malick-obsessed film student aping his (or her) hero's aesthetic. Or an homage. Or a Lonely Island parody (just waiting for Andy Samberg to pop out with braces and start rapping [that's my boy!]). Don't get me wrong -- the man can shoot a movie. It looks -- as expected -- beautiful and artistic and compelling. Really pretty "Magic Hour" stuff going on here. Let's just hope it's short! And coherent. And sexy. Always sexy. Thinking good thoughts!

Pain & Gain
Release date: April 26, 2013

I'm not even sure where to begin with this one. On one hand, I like all the stars of the film, specifically, Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Tony Shalhoub and Ed Harris (a nice supporting cast of comics helps as well). On the other hand, ugh. On one hand, heist/crime movies can be a lot of fun if they're done well, and the mid-1990s is a great (profitable?) period to revisit. On the other hand, yeesh. On one hand, some of the dialogue (beyond the HARRIBLE exposition early in the preview) is funny and fresh, especially with Dwayne Johnson's deadpan delivery. On the other hand, barf. FINAL POINT: this is supposedly Michael Bay's return to "smaller" movies (obviously this is all relative in the Bay-verse), and if you're a fan of Bad Boys, fast cars, a sexy location (Miami), etc., this is made for you. And that's OK!

Release date: TBA

Eli Roth is a bad actor. And a spotty director. But he's probably a great friend. And a good tipper! Saw this trailer before Django Unchained last week. I think everyone in my party laughed at the text, "The only thing more terrifying ... than Mother Nature ... is HUMAN NATURE!" But, OK, yeah -- sure. This is probably a perfectly serviceable horror/B/neo-grindhouse movie, and the genre definitely has its legions of fans. So, great! If you like green lighting, here you go!

Release date: TBA

Sam Worthington is a big, A-list Hollywood actor whether you like it or not! If you didn't get your fill of dreamy-accented surfer studs in Chasing Mavericks, then this is for you! You guys, I'm really trying to stay positive in 2013.

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone
Release date: March 15, 2013

Sure! 2013!

The Place Beyond the Pines
Release date: March 29, 2013

If the respected cinema trade publication Us Weekly says, "Ryan Gosling is electric," then I think it's safe to say ... HE IS ELECTRIC. Seriously, though, this looks great, all 2013 jokes aside. I said I was serious, you guys! Everyone should see this! Great cast, director, look, feel! Sold American!


  1. Malik cut so much material from The Thin Red Line he probably could have released a whole separate movie of deleted scenes, if he had wanted to. Sounds like someone's getting a little less selective in his old age...

  2. Patrick, be honest: you're looking forward to PAIN & GAIN, right?

  3. I am.

    I wrote an article a while ago about how people need to stop complaining about Michael Bay. He's made enough movies now that if someone doesn't like his style, then he/she should not go to one of his films.
    The only way Michael Bay will ever stop making films will be if people don't turn out for them.

    "Pain and Gain" may be the film that breaks the camel's back. We'll have to wait and see.

    I now look forward to each Michael Bay film because I realize that seldom in Hollywood do we get to see nonsense taken to such extremes (confusing action, racism, low brow humor), unfiltered because of box office receipts--and it's exciting to see the work of a madman beloved by millions.

    1. I am too. I will totally see it. I can't disagree with anything Cameron says about Michael Bay, but I'm unable to learn my lesson with him. I keep going back thinking that THIS time it will be different. I'm like Rihanna.

  4. The last time I saw a Michael Bay movie in theaters was "Pearl Harbor" (suckered in by the trailer, because after "Armageddon" I had sworn I'd never see another one of his films ever again). I learned my lesson in 2001: my money could be put to better use lit on fire keeping me warm than spent on a movie directed by this guy ever again.

    As for why Malick is stepping up his production so late in life, I pressume from "Tree of Life" that the man is acutely aware of his own mortality (unlike Kubrick, who clearly thought he was going to live forever by his time between projects). So, realizing he only has so much time left alive and people are still throwing money at him to do his thing, Terrence has decided to crank 'em. He played the Kubrick waiting-between-projects game, now it's the money-is-here-so-I-might-as-well-use-it cache' game. :-)

  5. My new-to-me movie of the day:

    SHREK THE THIRD (2007) on HD-DVD.

    The first "Shrek" is one of my favorite and funniest animated flicks of the 2000's. Targeting fairy tale characters/conventions was like shooting fish in a barrel, not to mention "Shrek" has a ballsy-by-CGI-kid-flicks ending that stuck to landing. "Shrek 2" (which I only saw recently) kept the party going with a neat setting (Beverly Hills as Far Far Away Land), new great supporting characters (Rupert Everett's Prince Charming, Julie Andrews and John Cleese as King & Queen, Antonio Banderas' Puss in Boots, etc.) and good-natured ribbing humor that still felt fresh, sincere and even character-based.

    "Shrek The Third" is where the wheels literally come off the franchise before our eyes. Cleese gets top-billing for next-to-no screen time (which is about as funny as fellow Python Eric Idle's Merlin schtick, as in not at all) and there are now way too many supporting characters from the first two "Shreks" crowding out Shrek and Fiona from their own movie (which is fine because they're really dull and uninteresting this time around). Eddie Murphy's tired Donkey schtick really gets annoying here. It's fitting the movie opens and ends (next-to-last scene) with a theater play, since the stakes and staging of gags plus what little story there is (involving Justin Timberlake's young Arthur taking over the Far Far Away kingdom) feel forced, artificial and just killing time until the movie reaches the 80 min. mark so it can cue the baby ogre montage, roll the credits and cash in the (now worthless) Dreamworks Animation stock.

    There is some funny stuff in "Shrek The Third" (Larry King as "Doris," Gingerbread Man's weird flash-before-your-eyes montage, Puss in Boot's 'you're royally ____' line, etc.) and the CG animation isn't horrible for a five year old non-Pixar movie. Still, this is the type of disposable animated entertainment that makes you appreciate stuff like "Brave" a lot more afterwards.