The Snowman Trailer #1 (2017) “The Iceman Cometh”

Boasting an impressive cast, and adapted from the best-selling novel by Jo Nesbo, The Snowman…doesn’t seem immediately to have anything to distinguish it from the run-of-the-mill horror film.  However, when you have Fassbender, JK Simmons, Val Kilmer, Rebecca Ferguson, and others involved, there’s always the possibility….oh hey, remember the Michael Keaton movie where he’s a crap dad, dies, and comes back as a reincarnated snowman?  This, I say with confidence, is already a leg up on that.  The Snowman hits theaters in October.

The Snowman Poster

The Shape of Water Trailer #1 (2017) “Experience a Connection Beyond Words”

It’s been over a decade since Guillermo del Toro’s masterpiece, Pan’s Laybrinth, and the director hasn’t come close to showing that level of work since.  Yes, Hellboy II was awesome, but del Toro’s dalliance with The Hobbit meant he never finished his trilogy.  Pacific Rim was fun, but hardly the kind of stuff you’d expect from someone who wrote and directed one of the best films of this century.  Crimson Peak was just…pedestrian.  The Shape of Water hearkens back to the kind of horror fairy tales del Toro told with Cronos, the Devil’s Backbone, and Pan, but this first trailer kind of makes it look like “Mute Lady Falls in Love with Abe Sapien”.  I’m not feeling the greatness I know del Toro has inside of him.  Maybe I’m wrong.  It certainly has a deep cast of great character actors.  The Shape of Water opens December 8, 2017.
The Shape of Water Poster

 

My Favorite Scene: Toy Story 2 (1999) “Jessie’s Story”

Disney recently announced that Toy Story 4 is set for release in 2019. That sparks in me the immediate reaction that we don’t NEED another Toy Story, because we already have three perfect ones. Granted, I had this reaction when Toy Story 2 was announced AND when Toy Story 3 was announced, and while it’s hard to differentiate between how perfect these films are, the sequels are probably both better than the original.  I hope the same kind of care to the legacy of these characters (much more recognizable to the children of the world today than Mickey, Minnie, or Pluto) is upheld.

Toy Story 2 introduced a number of new characters to the gang, most notably, Jessie the Cowgirl (voiced by Joan Cusack). Unlike the toys of Andy’s room, Jessie had lead a much more tumultuous life. She preferred life as a collectible, because being loved by a child hurt too much (as all the toys would learn in the next installment) when that child outgrows them.  Woody finally gets her to open up and tell her story, which is sad enough, but oh no, no, Pixar wasn’t satisfied with jumping up and down on your heart strings. They wantonly deployed Sarah McLachlan, the master of vocal tear generation, to sing the beautiful “When She Loved Me” over Jessie’s tale.

Pixar’s been in a rut for the most part over the last few years. It is heartening to hear the sequels are stopping after Toy Story 2, and we have had a few gems like Inside Out and Finding Dory, but when you watch a scene like this, you remember what Pixar was and should be again. There isn’t a demographic on Earth not moved by some part of this scene. They didn’t make films for kids, they made them for all ages in a way that never pandered to any age. This is the bar they face in Toy Story 4. So….good luck with that!
Woody and Jessie in Toy Story 2

Blade Runner 2049 Trailer #3 “The Future of the Species is Finally Unearthed”

I have never tried so hard to like a movie in my life and failed as I have with Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner. I have watched it FIVE times, and every time I walk away thinking it’s boring dreck. HOWEVER, I have loved every trailer I’ve seen for Blade Runner 2049, every still, every shot, every line. I think it’s awesome that Harrison Ford in the last years of his career is revisiting his legacy characters and giving them glory moments, and the audience a reminder of why he’s the one of the greatest actors of his generation: the everyman, instantly relatable and always entertaining. Director Denis Villeneuve has never disappointed me, and I don’t think he’s about to start here. For a full synopsis, read below. Continue reading Blade Runner 2049 Trailer #3 “The Future of the Species is Finally Unearthed”