Thursday Trailer Fix: War Horse

The trailer for Steven Spielberg’s War Horse premiered this morning. People are already making sweet love to it, declaring War Horse not only Spielberg’s return to glory but also deciding that this is the film to beat in at the 2012 Oscars.

Let me get this straight. I’m expected to “ooh” and “aah” over this trailer? Please.

War Horse, adapted from the award-winning play, does look like an excellent war epic. It boasts a great story, a stellar cast (Niels Arestrup! Emily Watson!), and a sweeping John Williams score. I’m sure I will be satisfied by the end result. But I’m not going to sit here and be seduced into thinking that trailer shows us anything other than Spielberg and company know how to manipulate viewers. I find this all so cliche and tiring.

It so premature to put this movie in any conversation about the Oscars that it makes my blood curdle.

What are your thoughts on this trailer for War Horse? Are you already on Team Spielberg or are you waving your cynic flag like me? Sound off below.

War Horse will be released in December 2012.

Pixar’s Brave Looks Totally Awesome

This preview poster for Pixar’s Brave, released today, makes me want to squeal with joy.

Pixar has made so many wonderful movies since 1995 but I can count on one hand how many of them have featured a strong female main protagonist: none. It looks like Brave, the story of a Scottish princess who would prefer to be an archer, will finally break the mold. It is also Pixar’s first fairy tale fantasy film and judging by the synopsis, Brave will be a bit dark:

The impetuous, tangle-haired Merida, though a daughter of royalty, would prefer to make her mark as a great archer. A clash of wills with her mother compels Merida to make a reckless choice, which unleashes unintended peril on her father’s kingdom and her mother’s life. Merida struggles with the unpredictable forces of nature, magic and a dark, ancient curse to set things right.

The poster and synopsis are essentially just code for Merida is a total badass. Thoughts on Brave? I know I will checking this out in June 2012.

Update: The teaser trailer confirms it. Brave will be totally awesome. Ginger power! Who’s with me?

Trailer Fix: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

I go to upstate NY for the weekend and the red band trailer for the feel bad movie of Christmas – David Fincher’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo leaks on the internet. The fast-paced, quick cuts of scenes from the movie set to Trent Reznor and Karen O’s cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Immigrant Song” give us a real taste of what Rooney Mara brings to the role of Lisbeth Salander. So far, the movie looks worthwhile and change the the many doubters’ minds.

Update: I suspected the leaked trailer may be removed and it was. Here is the official trailer minus the nudity and blood. (It is still awesome.)

Vodpod videos no longer available.

As someone who is not crazy about the books, I can get behind a new Hollywood movie adaptation. Considering how often books like Jane Eyre and every Jane Austen novel ever are re-adapted, we should expect a series as popular as Stieg Larsson’s to be re-imagined over and over again.

I’m eager to see what David Fincher will bring to series. If successful, the film’s depend completely on him to make this a memorable trilogy. More exciting is how Rooney Mara morphs from the high class vibe she consistently gives off into Lisbeth Salander, a character who is arguably on of the most iconic to come out of literature in quite some time.

So what are your thoughts on the teaser trailer and this adaptation of The Girl with Dragon Tattoo in general? Are you excited for the Stieg Larsson books to get a Finchian (yes, it is a verb now) touch?

In Which I Freak Out Over The Skin I Live In Teaser Trailer

The teaser trailer for Pedro Almodóvar’s latest film The Skin I Live In (La Piel Que Habito) has left me with a feeling of pure bliss and giddiness. I am smiling from ear to ear.

The brief appearance of Antonio Banderas coupled with the mere glimpses of what will (hopefully) be a commentary on how we alter the human body and a touch of psychological melodrama as only Almodóvar can do it just makes me swoon. (Almodóvar has described The Skin I Live In as a horror film but I hardly believe that he is capable of making a film without a little bit of melodrama.)

The 30-second clip immediately reminds me of Matador (1986), Laws of Desire (1987) and The Flower of My Secret (1995). Whatever it ends up evoking and getting at, The Skin I Live In is bound to be just as self-referential and fascinating as every previous Almodóvar film.

Needless to say, I’m intrigued and can’t wait to here the buzz from Cannes.

Trailer Fix: Cannes Edition

The Cannes Film Festival, which begins on Sunday, is the most magical place on earth. (Sorry Disney World.) Here are the trailers for some of the films screening in competition.

Footnote (Herat Shulayiml, dir. Joseph Cedar)

Hara-Kiri: Death of a Samurai (dir. Takashi Miike)

The Kid With the Bike (dir. Dardenne brothers)

Melancholia (dir. Lars von Trier)

Sleeping Beauty (dir. Julia Leigh)

The Tree of Life (dir. Terrence Malick)

We Have a Pope (Habemus Papam, dir. Nanni Moretti)