Trailers of the Week: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (and We’re Sure Some Others, but ABE LINCOLN KILLING VAMPIRES, PEOPLE!)
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (June 22)
Dan Silver: Last week Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter was a film I was looking forward to mocking, shunning, and then secretly renting on VOD one night after my wife and kid went to bed. But after seeing the brooding, visually vibrant, and downright bad-ass first trailer, I quickly became excited to fork over my $11 on June 22. So it pains me to say that the film’s international trailer diminishes my enthusiasm somewhat. With its orchestral score and all too typical hyperbolic, out of context, monologue/VO, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter now feels like the tonally askew, narratively disjointed, bland summer blockbuster I always thought it was going to be. More specifically it’s smelling a little like Jonah Hex. [Ed Note: OUCH.]
Rembert Browne: I’m praying that this insane movie does well, so I can finally pitch these scripts that have been collecting dust on my shelves for years:
- Genghis Khan: Sandwich Artist
- Isaac Newton: Terrorist Whisperer
- Florence Nightingale: Ax Nurse
- Eli Whitney: Buried Alive
- George Orwell: Mama Drama
- So You Think You Can Dance Better Than Mary Todd Lincoln?
Damsels in Distress
Silver: I am a member of a generation of male movie geeks who, through films like Ghost World, American Beauty, Prozac Nation, and Welcome to the Dollhouse, have consciously or unconsciously formed deep rooted attractions for cutesy, quirky girls who take charge, speak their mind, but are quietly in desperate need of love. (It’s this now adult generation of men who green-light shows like The New Girl and ensure that Alison Brie or Lizzy Caplan wear black horned rimmed glasses in all their photo shoots.) And it was this long-dormant part of my psyche that was awoken and stimulated when it saw Whit Stillman’s name (Metropolitan and Last Days of Disco) on the Damsels in Distress trailer and registered Aubrey Plaza and Greta Gerwig speaking in slightly poetic, deadpan tones. Not sure where this film fits into the cultural cinematic landscape; it feels like it should have been made 10 years ago.
Regardless, the sensation I got while watching this trailer was equivalent only to the way Ed Wood felt when throwing on an angora sweater. Well, not exactly like that … but you know what I mean.
Browne: I am a guy constantly on the lookout for more whimsy in my life. Luckily, Damsels in Distress is one big ball of cardigan-infused whimsy. I really want to ride a tandem beach cruiser around Brooklyn while Mungo Jerry’s “In the Summertime” blasts throughout the borough with every woman in this movie. I’m smitten. Whimsy-smitten. Can’t wait.
Dark Tide (March 8, On Demand)
Browne: The only thing more jarring than hearing “Academy Award winner Three 6 Mafia” is “Academy Award winner Halle Berry” in a movie about sharks. That’s the only thing I have to say about Dark Tide. Silver, sum up your feelings in no more than 75 words. I don’t want you wasting all your anger on Halle; there’s still a horrible scary movie to talk about.
Silver: I’m assuming this straight to VOD opus is Halle Berry’s atonement for being in New Year’s Eve. In my head, the choices given to Berry were: (1) Lose her Oscar, (2) appear in the new Saw movie, (3) star in this B-level mash-up of Deep Blue Sea, Dark Water, and The Perfect Storm. She made the right choice.
Seeking Friends for the End of the World (June 22)
Silver: If you have difficulty getting past the all-too-obvious metaphysical subtext to this film — live your life to the fullest because you never know when it’ll all end — I get it. But here’s what I see: two actors (Steve Carell and Keira Knightley) I trust based on their track record, a killer supporting cast made up of folks like Patton Oswalt, Rob Huebel, Melanie Lynskey, Connie Britton, T.J. Miller, and Gillian Jacobs, and a perfectly selected Talking Heads song. I’m all in on this film, but do fear for its box office.
Browne: While I appreciate them making a topical, potentially helpful movie about the world ending, I can’t imagine that this movie will be that good. Unfortunately, I have this horrible suspicion that at the end of the movie, the asteroid miraculously changes course and all is well. If that happens, I’m demanding my money back. If someone can promise me that the human race perishes at the end of the movie, then I will gladly go see this film. Gladly.
Silver: I’m aware of, but not well-versed, in the colorful history behind Pusher. I do know that is was Nicolas Winding Refn’s (Drive) first film, and that there’s been a slew of sequels and remakes that Refn may or may not have been involved in. But does any of that really matter to anyone … except maybe me? Probably not. Especially since the trailer of THIS Pusher is pretty rad. Produced by Refn, the trailer’s got a nice Drive meets Layer Cake with a dash of Run Lola Run vibe to it. Who wouldn’t want to see that?
Browne: I most certainly want to. Anytime a guy owes another guy some money and has a limited amount of time to find that money, that is a movie I want to see. That’s sort of my monthly routine when it comes to paying my rent. But yes, this movie looks awesome, and if the actual film includes the ravey music from the trailer, I’m showing up with glow sticks and a ring pop on each finger.
Intruders (March 30)
Silver: Here’s a bad idea. Create a trailer for a new horror film that feels exactly like every promo made since the original The Ring and The Grudge were released. Have it clock in at a reasonable 90 seconds, but don’t show your actual star (in this case Clive Owen) until 45 seconds in. And finally, throughout the trailer scatter references to a ghoulish and evil character named “Hallow Face,” and then confuse the audience by throwing a title out there which has little to nothing to do with what was just set up in the trailer. Something like Intruders.
I know, that’s a crazy bad idea. No one would do that. Right?
Browne: Hey, Intruders, you just got Ethered by Dan Silver. How does that feel? I’m keeping my mouth shut, because anything I say will take away from the Joe Jackson spanking that he just gave your movie. Wow.