Trailer Reviews for February 17, 2012

THIS MEANS WAR



What the poster really wants to say about this movie is that it’s Spy vs Spy, but Mad Magazine no doubt has that phrase trademarked, so they’ve been using “spy against spy.” I don’t know how they got away with saying “vs” in the trailer. The spy vs spy plot territory has also been covered in Mr and Mrs Smith, though not quite like this. I might be more into this movie if I agreed with Reese Witherspoon’s character that the two guys are both gorgeous, but they’re both really not. The trailer doesn’t make it seem all that funny, either, I mean – they included a crotch joke. That’s should be rule #1 of trailer making (well, rule #2 behind “don’t show the whole movie”) – no crotch jokes. But it’s McG! Maker of Terminator Salvation and Human Target! So… I guess we’ll see.

GHOST RIDER: SPIRIT OF VENGEANCE



Oh God, how did this movie end up with a sequel when the original was one of the stupidest movies of the year? Are they really that hard up for ideas in Hollywood that they need to beat even the bad ones to death? It would have been bad enough on its own, but add in the fact that Nicholas Cage plays the lead and you’ve got a recipe for silliness with a cardboard spine holding it all together. I get the feeling that no one working on this movie was really trying very hard. Acting: blank. Plot: silly. Special effects: look nice, but not even making a token effort to keep within earshot of the laws of physics. I don’t know what Ciaran Hinds – an actor with actual talent – is doing in this movie. Maybe he lost a bet.

THE SECRET WORLD OF ARIETTY



Oh. My. God. The Borrowers! I remember the Borrowers! I loved those books! It even looks like a 90s cartoon, albeit a Japanese one. I don’t remember the daughter having a big person boyfriend, but it’s been a long time since I read any of those books. I always thought it would be so cool to be tiny like that in a big world because then you could repurpose so much stuff into even cooler stuff – fish hooks into grappeling hooks, one M&M into a whole party dish, etc. So I’ll totally see this movie, even though I’m not a fan of Japanese animation. I can only hope they didn’t mess around with the plot/concept too much and ruin it.

W.E.



Watching the first minute of this trailer, I thought the story sounded oddly familiar, until I realized that of course, this is the story of the brother of the stuttering prince from The King’s Speech. The fact that his brother gave up the throne for his girlfriend was the reason he had to make the speech in the first place. I’d be interested to see the story from the brother’s perspective, though I feel sorry for whoever is playing the stutterer. He’ll inevitably be found wanting when compared to Colin Firth. Divorce isn’t nearly as scandalous now as it was then, so we’ve also got the modern love story to occupy us and give us juicy new details, which is a framing device that worked well in Possession. I’ll see it, when it eventually works its way around to here.

TYRANNOSAUR



I hate it when they give films names that have nothing to do with what they’re about. I realize they’re trying to go all metaphorical with the buried issues and whatnot by naming it after dinosaur bones, but when I see dinosaur bones on a poster I want the movie to be about archaeologists, not Irish people with anger management issues. I might possibly be able to stand this movie, since the angry guy seems to become not angry over the course of the film, but I might still decide to hold the dinosaur against it. Anyway, I won’t have to make up my mind for months – until it comes out on DVD. This is only a limited release.

Also, if you live in Sydney (Nova Scotia, not Australia), on Thursday at 7pm the Cape Breton Film Series people are showing My Week With Marilyn, which is one of those wrenching period dramas. You can check out the trailer review here or you can check out this interview with Kenneth Brannagh, who plays Laurence Olivier in the film.

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