Posted on Sunday, September 20th, 2015 by Christopher Stipp
Trailers are an under-appreciated art form insofar that many times they’re seen as vehicles for showing footage, explaining films away, or showing their hand about what moviegoers can expect. Foreign, domestic, independent, big budget: What better way to hone your skills as a thoughtful moviegoer than by deconstructing these little pieces of advertising? This week we try to get our best friend pregnant, think about what it means to own a Mustang, get in the ring with little luchadores, jump off a cliff with nothing but a squirrel suit hugging our nether regions, and get real with some little girls.
Nasty Baby Trailer
Well. That escalated quickly.
The latest from director Sebastián Silva who last brought us Crystal Fairy and the Magical Cactus comes a movie that feels like it’s going to yin and then yangs right off the viewing highway in a violent over-correction. The idea that a gay man wants to have his best friend be a surrogate so he can have a baby of his own seems rather quaint knowing this road is well worn with many yarns exploring this idea but things take a rather deep, unsettling turn somewhere and the nastiness is hidden from view as a barrage of incoherent images, shapes and colors pound your eyes. What started out as a straightforward, light hearted comedy turns rather dark. Side note: props to actor Mark Margolis for making yet another unforgettable, and uncomfortable, moment after being such a force in Ace Ventura: Pet Detective. What all of this amounts to is still unclear but, man, do I want to see where this all leads.
Tired Moonlight Trailer
What director Britni West has managed to capture is something that comes about as close as you can get of blending reality and fiction, a home movie with some artistic flourishes. Shot with the kind of style, as one critic noted, that feels like Beasts of the Southern Wild, this is a little more gritty, more vérité. I have zero idea what’s happening here but I am invited to just observe and interpret what I see. There’s a simplicity in that which is powerful and kinda ballsy. Even though there isn’t so much as a shred of narrative to be mined in these trailer hills it’s nonetheless worthy enough of your time and consideration.
I am not a real man.
Sure, poke fun at these dudes all you like, but the fact of the matter is that these modern day daredevils have a fiendish need to live a life that is filled with adrenaline, adventure and well-charged GoPros. What separates this documentary from all those Red Bull funded ventures, unfortunately, is that one of director Christen Roede’s subjects, Ludovic Woerth, was killed while making this film. There’s no doubt danger in the sport that trades heavily in accidental death when miscalculations or sheer bad luck happens upon these athletes but the final result here is a trailer is everything you want to see in a movie about some guys who are living life one jump at a time. No matter how many times I see this done, I’m always drawn in by it all.
And, for those wanting a taste before you buy, here’s Jokke Sommer, Espen Fadnes and Ludo Woerth flying under the arm of the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro.
Bleak Street Trailer
I’m kind of in awe.
Director Arturo Ripstein’s black and white vision of two Mexican luchadores is one that feels like a fever dream wrapped up in an unorthodox episode of Unsolved Mysteries. It feels bizarre but I feel that’s intentional. There are no subtitles but, who needs them? It’s unnecessary in a trailer that wants you more to be enticed by its artistry, it’s slow hand, it’s silent narrative. You can pick up elements here and there and play connect-the-dots with what you think is happening but there is no denying the power of this effective, yet subdued presentation. The audio is all wrestling jabs and falls, the sound of the mat ringing every few seconds that it’s jarringly spooky. The net net of this, though, is something that sells us on a story, an experience worth having.
A Faster Horse Trailer
I wasn’t enthralled over even mildly curious about director David Gelb’s latest, to be honest. Seeing how I was wrapped up and transfixed by Jiro Dreams of Sushi and that this is coming to us by way of the producers of Undefeated I gave the trailer a chance. What makes this so effective is how well it glides. It is, honestly, able to make something like The Mustang, something that I could go either way on having no interest in vehicles beyond hoping mine starts in the morning, worth investing your time in to consume. To peer into its history and see how it connects with so many enthusiasts across the globe. At times I wonder whether this is going to essentially be an EPK for Ford but there is some balance to the narrative as it unfolds. The right pull-quotes are used as well as the right moments that are allowed to breathe a little bit. It’s not overly flashy or in-your-face. It’s the right kind of trailer that embraces what it is and lets the people do the talking.
Nota bene: If you have any suggestions of trailers to possibly be included in this column, even have a trailer of your own to pitch, please let me know by sending me a note at Christopher_Stipp@yahoo.com or look me up via Twitter at @Stipp
In case you missed them, here are the other trailers we covered at /Film this week:
- Evolution Trailer – Different.
- Hardcore Trailer – Not sure if motion sickness would set in three minutes into this.
- Katy Perry: Making Of The Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show Trailer – I mean, I guess if you’re into this sort of thing it looks OK.
- Red Oaks Trailer – It’s not terrible and has a little bit of charm.
- Colonia Trailer – Fails to endear me to anyone here or why I should care.
- Creed Trailer – Is Creed’s opponent that guy from Color Me Badd?
- The 5th Wave Trailer – Derivative and uninspired.
- The Jungle Book Trailer – That gets the job done right.
- The Divergent Series: Allegiant Trailer – Teens, rejoice! Your imagined allegory awaits.
- Bridge of Spies Trailer – That bombastic, sweeping score, and the overwrought, prosaic quips. Geez, manipulate much?
- Freeheld Trailer – Not sure this elevates any higher than a more-polished Hallmark movie.
- In the Heart of the Sea Trailer – Expansive in scope and tone.
- Steve Jobs Trailer – I like the cadence.
- The Last Witch Hunter Trailer – Hahaha…No.