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Trailer Round-Up – 18 February, 2017

"The House, Song to Song, Colossal, Ghost in the Shell, Sandy Wexler, Aftermath, Power Rangers"

The House

After Scott and Kate Johansen (Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler) lose their daughter Alex’s college fund, they become desperate to earn it back so she can pursue her dream of attending a university. With the help of their neighbor Frank (Jason Mantzoukas), they decide to start an illegal casino in the basement of his house.

The House doesn’t look like an outrageously funny comedy, but it’s got a decent premise and a cast of very funny actors going for it, which is always a plus. The trailer’s got plenty of laughs and it doesn’t look like it’s giving away the best jokes (although if it is, that’d definitely be a cause for concern.)

Set for a 30 June 2017 release.

Song to Song

Song to Song , written and directed by Terrence Malick, is a modern love story set against the Austin, Texas music scene. Two entangled couples — struggling songwriters Faye (Mara) and BV (Gosling), and music mogul Cook (Fassbender) and the waitress whom he ensnares (Portman) — chase success through a rock ‘n’ roll landscape of seduction and betrayal.

I’m not familiar enough with Malick’s work to know if Song to Song is in his wheelhouse or a departure, but this is a good trailer that spotlights the two couples and the fascinating, if unusual direction. It helps that this is a brilliant cast of not just top tier talent, but household name talent.

Set for a 17 March 2017 release in the US.

Colossal

In Colossal, directed by Nacho Vigalondo. Gloria (Anne Hathaway) is an out-of-work girl who, after getting kicked out of her apartment by her boyfriend, is forced to leave her life in New York and move back to her hometown. When news reports surface that a giant creature is destroying Seoul, South Korea, Gloria gradually comes to the realization that she is somehow connected to his far-off phenomenon.

This is a better trailer than the first one, expanding on what we saw there and giving us a better idea of the premise and the characters. While I like the idea, I’m still a little uneasy about the tone – the trailer implies it’s a straightforward comedy, but I can’t help but think that’d make the widespread death and destruction caused by the monster a tough sell. This is a premise that either needs absolute ridiculousness or a darker edge, and the light, goofy comedy we’ve seen so far doesn’t seem enough to support it.

Set for a 7 April 2017 release in the US.

Power Rangers

Saban’s Power Rangers follows five ordinary high school kids who must become something extraordinary when they learn that their small town of Angel Grove – and the world – is on the verge of being obliterated by an alien threat. Chosen by destiny, our heroes quickly discover that they are the only ones who can save the planet. But to do so they will have to overcome their real-life issues and band together as the Power Rangers before it is too late.

Well, the final trailer is in and while it still looks very cheesy and not good at all, the new Power Rangers at the very least looks and feels like Power Rangers – I was never a fan, so I can’t speak with 100% accuracy, but it does appear to be in that wheelhouse, so at the very least, perhaps fans of the franchise will get a movie they can enjoy, which is fair.

Set for release on 23 March, 2017.

Ghost in the Shell

Ghost in the Shell, a live-action adaptation of the Japanese manga of the same name, follows the Major (Scarlet Johansson), a special ops, one-of-a-kind human-cyborg hybrid, who leads the elite task force Section 9. Devoted to stopping the most dangerous criminals and extremists, Section 9 is faced with an enemy whose singular goal is to wipe out Hanka Robotic’s advancements in cyber technology.

Having now seen the original Ghost in the Shell animated movie, I can safely that the live-action version appears to be a faithful adaptation. Whitewashing controversy and debate aside, Johansson’s got the talent and the action credentials for Major and visually, the movie looks stunning. The trailer perhaps gives a little too much of the plot away, but considering the source material, that’s arguably a good thing – this is dense, meaty sci-fi and that’s always tough to sell.

Scheduled for release on 31 March, 2017.

Sandy Wexler

Sandy Wexler (Adam Sandler) is a talent manager working in Los Angeles in the 1990s who diligently represents a group of eccentric clients on the fringes of show business. His single-minded devotion is put to the test when he falls in love with his newest client, Courtney Clarke (Academy Award and Grammy winner Jennifer Hudson), a tremendously talented singer who he discovers at an amusement park.

Well, this certainly looks like an Adam Sandler movie, in that it appears grossly self-indulgent, painfully unfunny and is full of great comedic talent that have no material to work with. The twist is that Sandler is back to his signature obnoxious voices, which makes the trailer such a delightful treat for the ears. I’ll give this to Sandy Wexler – Sandler looks awake and like he actually kind of cares about what’s going on. It still look terrible though.

Available on Netflix globally on April 14, 2017.

Aftermath

Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Aftermath is a revenge film based on the real life incident where a man hunts down the air traffic controller he holds responsible for a plane crash that killed his wife and children.

It’s interesting to see Schwarzenegger take on more dramatic roles. While overblown action has always been his bread and butter, he is a capable actor and seeing him try out different roles is neat. The real life incident that inspired Aftermath could make for a powerful narrative, but the trailer does look a bit generic. Nothing outright is bad about it, but there’s very little that appears to stand out.

Will be released in UK cinemas on 7th April 2017.

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