Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Movies to Look Forward To

While browsing Apple's movie trailer page (I'm not sure why they have one) I found a couple of movies that look like they have potential. And here they are:

Ghosts of Cite Soleil

This film follows the story of two brothers who lead opposing factions in a gang war for control of Haiti's abject slum of Cite Soleil leading up to the overthrow of Aristide's regime in 2004. If that and the movie's poster (left image) doesn't sound menacing enough, the gangs' foot solders are called "chimeras," or ghosts, thus the title. Sounds dangerous, huh? Amazingly, this is a documentary. I have a strange fascination with places of complete moral neglect and base depravity, but I lack the adrenaline lust to go see it for myself, so I'm glad that this camera crew risked their lives for my $8. I hereby nominate them for a "Balls of Steel" Oscar Award.

Paramount/Bad Robot

At least there's no risk of anachronisms for this title. The trailer begins by putting the audience in the middle of the story as a character videotaping the surprise birthday party that's unfolding. Everyone's having a good old time, there's some hot chicks and slick i-bankers sharking them, and then shit starts to go south unexpectedly. Interestingly, there's no summary text for the movie, just the trailer alone, which adds to the mystery. Some even speculate it's a Voltron movie. It's obviously some sort of monster or alien invasion flick, but it's got potential for several reasons. First, it's written by Drew Goddard and directed by J.J. Abrams, the masterminds behind Lost, Angel, Alias, and Buffy. Sure, most of these you might consider cultish WB series, but they have a surprisingly large, rabid, and maniacally defensive following. Second, filming in the first-person seems to be more engaging to the audience (see the end to Dawn of the Dead (2004)--spoiler). And lastly, I have a big soft spot for Godzilla-type movies, having watched the same ones ad nauseum as a tyke. Anyway, this movie's got potential, though it has to toe a very thin line in order to pan out.

I Am Legend
Warner Bros/Village Roadshow

Another apocalyptic movie, right? Well, yeah, but if these "end of days" type movies were done right the first time we wouldn't be left wanting for more. Sure, this is your typical Will Smith movie that starts out with something like, "My name is John Armstead. I am the last man on Earth," but damnit it's cool. N8K over at Slain By An Elf joked that it looks like The Day After Independence Day, and it does, but The Day After Tomorrow was terrible, and Independence Day made me wonder why the aliens didn't try more than once, so why wouldn't this cinematic gold? Oh wait. My prediction: entertainment.

Fox Searchlight

The plot goes something like... the Sun is dying in the not-too-distant future and the Earth sends a cadre of attractive astronauts to plant a device inside that will reinitiate the nuclear fusion process to keep us all alive. The mission starts to turn for the worst when they discover the Sun is pretty hot and the ship isn't working right. Sounds pretty droll, but toward the end of the trailer we discover that there's some weird shit going down on the ship and, in fact, there's an unidentified additional "crew member" that might have something to do with their difficulties. It looks like a hybrid of Event Horizon, 2001: A Space Odyssey, and Sphere (the book, not the awful awful movie). Probably the film's most encouraging feature is Cillian Murphy, who's one of my favorite actors (28 Days Later, Batman Begins, The Wind That Shakes the Barley). It could be a wash, but I'm guessing otherwise.


Higgins said...

The Apple preview for the unnamed movie was intriguing. But since this is a case where the trailer is likely not footage from the movie, could this same trailer not have been used for the Matthew Broderick version of Godzirra? Sure it could have, and it would have gotten plenty of buzz going, and then tricked you into the theater to watch an awful movie.

I guess it is a small danger compared to when trailers for comedies pretty much show all of the funny stuff from the movie - thus leading to those awkward moments in the theater when you see the part you've already seen 100 times in advertisements, and then you're not sure if it's ok to laugh or not. Pretend to laugh and appear a freak who somehow doesn't own a TV? See if your date laughs and play along? Or don't laugh? Sure, the scenario is probably still funny/entertaining - but only a retard would still laugh out loud after having it drilled into your head for weeks. Right?

Brice Lord said...

Well, that's a good question Higgins, that crossed my mind, too. But, in Wikipedia (i think), it says this movie is filmed from the perspective of a couple of youngsters or something. Of course, that could mean it's filmed from their perspective, or the story is told from their perspective, but I'm leaning toward the former. Then again, it's Hollywood, and it has a history of disappointing me greatly (see Alien vs. Predator).

And yeah, the comedy conundrum you mentioned is always awkward in the theater. What I usually do in that case is when a scene shown on the commercials comes up in the movie I just blow an airhorn for the entire duration of the scene. This tends to be pretty effective at breaking down that awkward vibe, and girls love sudden loud noises, so I typically get laid that night in addition.

CJ said...

How ironic! I also use an airhorn to protect the integrity of films. However, I use the deafening power of the horn to drown out people who discuss the plots of films in public places, like the water cooler at work. Also, I like to scare cats.

Arlene said...

Who are these random people commenting on your blog?

Anywho, that Will Smith movie is about a man who every night prepares for the onslaught of attacks from...killer vampires? Seriously, "I Am Legend" is from an old timey book about some sort of bacteria that makes everyone experience vampire-like systems [question, at what point do you make the jump from "vampire-like" to just being a plain old vampire?] and he needs to figure out why he is immune. Not to say it doesn't look good, but...vampires? I don't do well with the living dead.

Brice Lord said...

Wait, are you serious about that vampire thing? The trailer makes it look like some spaceships are roughing up the Big Apple and Willie Smith is all alone to play golf and drive fast cars on empty streets to kill the time. What does that have to do with vampires? I don't disbelieve you, but it's misleading. Also, it sounds kinda cheesy, particularly since there's another crappy vampire movie coming out called "30 Nights" wherein some town in northern Alaska is annually attacked by vampires during its 30 days of perpetual darkness during winter. Oddly, this happens every year, which makes me wonder why anyone would stay after the first year of vampire issues.

As for undead movies, I, for one, very much enjoy them. 28 Days Later, Dawn of the Dead, Shaun of the Dead, I'll take them anyday.