This Week In Trailers: Autism: The Sequel, The Innocence Files, JJ Villard's Fairy Tales, LA Originals, To The Stars

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 overcome being an ugly duckling, spend some more time with those with autism, have our third eye melted, look at some hip hop legends, and get exonerated for crimes we didn't commit.

Autism: The Sequel

Director Tricia Regan is bringing hope at just the right time.

Revisiting the subjects of the 2007 Emmy-winning documentary Autism: The Musical, Autism: The Sequel offers a heartwarming inside look into the daily challenges and triumphs of adults on the autism spectrum.

In 2006, HBO debuted the 2007 Emmy®-winning Autism: The Musical, a poignant, heartwarming film that followed five children on the autism spectrum as they wrote and performed their own musical. We revisit the stars of this musical 12 years later in Autism: The Sequel as the original subjects, now in their early 20s, navigate what independence means to them as they manage challenges and triumphs as adults.

If there was a way to excise the uplifting string arrangement towards the end of the trailer, I would do it. It's not to say this documentary isn't an uplifting story, but when you consider that these kids, who are now adults, are still struggling to live day-to-day with autism, it seems like a different approach could have been made to reflect their current accomplishments. This is a story that will continue long after this doc is done. This specific story is a celebration, but, also, there is the very real fact that there are more mountains for them to climb. It's inspiring.

The Innocence Files

True crime aficionados, rejoice!

Through the lens of The Evidence, The Witness and The Prosecution, The Innocence Files shines a powerful light on the untold personal stories behind eight cases of wrongful conviction that the nonprofit organization the Innocence Project and organizations within the Innocence Network have uncovered and worked tirelessly to overturn. The Innocence Files is executive produced and directed by Academy Award® nominee Liz Garbus, Academy Award® winner Alex Gibney, Academy Award® winner Roger Ross Williams; with episodes also directed by Academy Award® nominee Jed Rothstein, Emmy Award® winner Andy Grieve and Sarah Dowland.

You have a veritable who's who of directing talent who have lined up to tell some very real stories. Stories that, without question, cast a deep and long shadow over the criminal justice system. No one deserves to be wrongfully convicted, much less jailed, for an inordinate amount of one's life in the pursuit of padding a prosecutor's stats. So it's somewhat cold comfort to know these people's stories will be told by some insightful filmmakers. This is going to be gripping viewing.

LA Originals

I have no idea who Mister Cartoon and Estevan Oriol are, but here we go.

An exploration of the culture and landmarks of the chicano and street art movement that cemented Mister Cartoon and Estevan Oriol's status as behind-the-scenes hip hop legends.

From a sociological point of view, I am fascinated with this kind of underground artistry. How these paragons of their craft became legendary, and what it was about them that made it so, is just a nice diversion from instastories of well-heeled, high cheek-boned, and high-profile influencers who peddle in influence, but are just the flavor of the month wannabes. These guys had staying power.

JJ Villard's Fairy Tales

JJ Villard is here for your attention and you might as well turn it over.

JJ Villard's Fairy Tales is a new, twisted, fun take on the classic Brothers Grimm fairy tales like Cinderella and Snow White. The charm and cuteness of the original stories remain, but now they've been updated and packaged into a ball of raw, visceral, gross weirdness.

Whacked up in 15-minute, bite-sized pieces, this is going to help me through some troubling, sleepless nights that I've been experiencing. I would reckon this is going to help anyone who just needs to let someone else massage the inside of their mind for a change. Weird, colorful, fantastical, this has all the hallmarks of another great Adult Swim series.

To The Stars

Director Martha Stephens came onto my radar with her 2014 film Land Ho! and this foray into a coming-of-age tale looks charming.

Under small town scrutiny, a withdrawn farmer's daughter forges an intimate friendship with a worldly but reckless new girl in 1960s Oklahoma.

Look, I'm not going to try to upsell this. What you see is what you get, and what we're getting is a lot of story we've seen done in so many ways. It's not a knock as it's actually this trailer's strength. You've got to be able and telegraph the empathy that is required to make something like this feel fresh. And, this trailer does just that. Again, it's nothing that I think will end up on any Top 10 list of the year, but it's good enough to consider putting in the queue.

Nota bene: If you have any suggestions of trailers for possible inclusion in this column, even have a trailer of your own to pitch, please let me know by sending me a note at or look me up via Twitter at @Stipp

In case you missed them, here are the other trailers we covered at /Film this week:

  • The Main Event Trailer – Not even if it was the last thing in my Netflix queue
  • When The Streetlights Go On Trailer – Looks fair to middling
  • The Last Dance Trailer – I need this
  • Trying Trailer – A little too twee for my liking
  • Normal People Trailer – Well, this is a little complicated, innit?
  • Rick and Morty Season 4 Trailer – I need this, right now
  • Love Wedding Repeat Trailer – I'm interested
  • Outer Banks Trailer – Nah
  • Elephant and Dolphin Reef Trailers - Exactly what you think it is
  • Peninsula Trailer – Hell yeah
  • Punk'd and Thanks a Million Trailers – OK
  • 50 States of Fright Trailer - WB-level scariness
  • Killing Eve: Series 3 Trailer – It certainly looks pretty
  • The Third Day Trailer – Spooktacular