RogerBW's Blog

June-July 2017 Trailers 14 July 2017

Some trailers I've seen recently, and my thoughts on them. (Links are to youtube. Opinions are thoroughly personal.)

The Only Living Boy in New York: teenage white boy solipsism and young lerve, with comic complications. Meh.

American Assassin: does not look any less generic than it did in the teaser trailer. This is from a book series, so I suspect that the Sinister Secret Agency isn't even going to turn out to be Ambiguously Evil; that's a computer-game level of plot, and this film can't even rise to that.

Souvenir: might just rise above the mass of extruded film product; an old story, but potentially told well. All right, Isabelle Huppert.

Thank You for Your Service: post-traumatic stress is still traumatic. Anything here that wasn't already being said in all those Vietnam films?

To the Bone: clearly a showcase for Lily Collins; but is it just more young white pretty people with problems?

Person to Person: ensemble pieces always have a tough time, because some stories are always more interesting then others so every few minute there's a sense of disappointment that we're going away from something we want to see more of. This looks as if it might work, though.

Marshall: I'm less interested in this specific implementation of what looks a lot like the standard Black Historical Heroes Film, and much more enthused by the fact that the Black Historical Heroes Film has now become a standard thing that gets made. Not just for the "urban audience", for general filmgoers. Hurrah.

Stronger: inspiring true story is inspiring.

The Gong Show: this is probably as representative of the raft of Gong Show trailers that have came out this month as any of them. Great big meh.

Pitch Perfect 3: seems to be more self-aware than I expected, but still seems unlikely to bring in people who aren't already fans of the franchise.

The Foreigner: dead daughter, obsession with vengeance, OK so it's Jackie Chan but it looks as if they've excised the sense of humour that makes him worth watching.

A Bad Moms Christmas (Teaser): looks as if they're dropping the snobs-vs-slobs plot from the first film, and if we're really lucky actually digging into the characters a bit. That would be nice.

The Emoji Movie: let's rip off everything, but particularly Wreck-It Ralph.

Ingrid Goes West: looks a bit more interesting than the first trailer, but it's still hanging almost entirely on Aubrey Plaza. She can probably do it.

The Greatest Showman: clearly excellent spectacle, and if the plot holds together too this could be good fun.

Jumanji - Welcome to the Jungle: the original was a pretty terrible film that made the 10th most money of any film released in 1995. So obviously there had to be a sequel. At least they aren't keeping the annoying young actors for most of the running time, but oh, my, it's as if they took a list of the things that appeal to me in films and did the opposite.

Breathe: an Inspiring True Story. I don't think it's that I object to this kind of story per se, it's that everything is always carefully arranged to make the Inspiring answer the correct one, and that feels like lying to me in a way that plain old fiction doesn't.

Death Note: the anime series worked all right. If I want to see this story, I'll watch that.

My Little Pony - The Movie: some people love this. I guess it's for them.

Polaroid: yes, this is now unfamiliar enough to be an Object of Horror. Yay. The flame sequence is nicely done, though.

This Means Something: no, it really doesn't. (Sorry, couldn't resist.) Trailer done very much on the cheap, not a good sign.

Borg vs. McEnroe: I remember this from the time and wasn't excited about it then. Maybe more interesting to people for whom it's new? Or who like sports?

Lucky: why should I be interested in these boring old men?

A Family Man: horrid fake man comes up against a real problem and has to try to re-enter real life. Which might work better if I had a reason to like him in the first place.

Lemon: I hate comedy of embarrassment, and this film appears to be exclusively that.

Never Let Go: woman as action hero, great. But it's because of her bay-bee, so just the usual stereotyped female motivation, in order to reassure the viewer that she's a normal person really.

68 Kill: when this sort of story of unlovable and incompetent petty criminals is told in a book by Carl Hiaasen or Tim Dorsey, I can enjoy it rather a lot. When it's in a film, it doesn't work for me. Maybe because Hiaasen and Dorsey always remember to put in at least one vaguely sympathetic character, rather than the sad-sack guy here who's clearly just being led around by his genitalia?


  1. Posted by Michael Cule at 04:05pm on 14 July 2017

    Hey, I liked JUMANJI! Robin Williams, a magical boardgame, time travel!

    That someone has remade it based around a video game is both depressing and inevitable.

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