Sharknado. It’s sharks in a tornado. The Syfy channel’s latest is loaded with melodrama, abysmal CGI and the silliest scenario imaginable, but the filmmakers know it and embrace it -- so whether you’re willing to admit it or not, the “Too Violent for TV” trailer is a winner. I hope this week’s Worst Stuff entries appreciate being beaten by Ian Ziering battling a flying shark with a chainsaw.
The Best Stuff
1. Out of the Furnace
After Crazy Heart, it’s no surprise that the trailer for Scott Cooper’s follow-up is powered by an infectious song selection and perfectly timed music cues, but elevating the effects of the first trailer for Out of the Furnace further is the slew of quality performances housed within an enthrallingly gritty world. Come November 27, Cooper could deliver a complete package yet again.
2. Saving Mr. Banks
The new trailer for Saving Mr. Banks is a tad on the long side, but the piece is so well paced and constructed that rather than feeling like too much, it truly isn’t enough. Similar to the film Mary Poppins, the tale of P.L. Travers and Walt Disney coming together to make that movie a reality in Saving Mr. Banks has a playful charm that suggests this could be a winning December release.
It still isn’t quite clear whether Spike Lee did Chan-wook Park’s original justice or whether he changed too much or not enough, but he’s definitely got something here. When watching the new Oldboy trailer as though it’s a stand-alone film, the scenario is undeniably enthralling, the performances are compelling, and the visuals are haunting -- making it seem as though Lee’s take could be an effective film in and of itself. But there’s still no changing the fact that this Oldboy is a remake of the 2003 original, so comparisons are inevitable. At this point, it’s impossible to tell whether that will elevate the new version or sink it, but this trailer is definitely a good start.
The Worst Stuff
1. Seventh Son
As though the film’s January 17, 2014 release didn’t solidify it enough, this first trailer proves that Seventh Son is in trouble. There is some impressive imagery and a few neat CGI tricks, but the story details are far too jumbled to make much sense of anything. And that actually might not have been a problem had the film been a fun, silly romp like Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters, but based on what we’ve got here, Seventh Son takes itself very seriously and it doesn’t seem as though the material will be able to support that tone.
2. Breaking the Girl
Initially, the promo for Breaking the Girl hints at having some intriguing and dangerous college-set drama, but you never get the chance to enjoy the details of the vendettas because it’s nearly impossible to tell all the girls apart. Fortunately, around the 30-second mark, you come to realize you’re not missing out on much anyway when the characters are dumb enough to think that by killing the other’s enemy, that the cops will never suspect them.
3. The Canyons
When you’re hoping to reel in a theatrical audience, the worst possible way to open your trailer is by having the lead character make a speech about how she has zero interest in catching a film on the big screen. But again, it’s no major loss here because this is The Canyons we’re talking about. The promo material is still entirely unappealing, having zero compelling plot points, not a single character worth trying to connect to, and some downright ugly shot composition.
What are your favorite and least favorite movie trailers this week?