July 20, 2011

Trailer Watch: The Dark Knight Rises, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, Hugo, John Carter, Contagion

This week brought us a great crop of trailers, including one for the final installment of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy, The Dark Knight Rises, an exciting Sherlock Holmes sequel, Steven Soderbergh’s upcoming horror-thriller, a 3D kids’ flick from Martin Scorsese, and a new live-action Sci-Fi epic from the director of Finding Nemo and WALL-E.

The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
Release Date: July 20th, 2012
Cast: Christian Bale, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Gary Oldman, Anne Hathaway, Tom Hardy, Morgan Freeman, Marion Cotillard
Director: Christopher Nolan

Premiering in front of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 was the trailer for the next big summer hit from Warner Bros: The Dark knight Rises. The new movie picks up where The Dark Knight left off, and completes Christopher Nolan’s batman trilogy. The old crowd of stars--Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, and Gary Oldman--resume their roles alongside new ones, Tom Hardy as Bane, the main villain, and Anne Hathaway as Catwoman, a second villain. The trailer reviews the events in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, while also teasing some new gritty new footage from the film. One year is too long to wait!

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011)
Release Date: December 16th, 2011
Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Rachel McAdams, Noomi Rapace, Jared Harris, Stephen Fry
Director: Guy Ritchie

Guy Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes was a success both financially and critically with a solid MRQE Metric of 65. It’s no surprise, then, that a sequel comes along. The sequel improves upon the excellent Downey Jr.-Jude Law duo by adding Jared Harris as Professor Moriarty, the villain, and Noomi Rapace, who played Liz Salander in the original Swedish adaptation of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, making her English-language debut. The electrifying new trailer is quickly-cut, showing off much of the action and humor which made the original Sherlock Holmes movie so popular in the first place.

Hugo (2011)
Release Date: November 23rd, 2011
Cast: Asa Butterfield, Chloe Moretz, Jude Law, Sacha Baron Cohen, Christopher Lee
Director: Martin Scorsese

Based on the popular award-winning children’s book by Brian Selznick, The Invention of Hugo Cabret, the movie with a shorter title marks legendary director Martin Scorsese’s first foray into both family films and 3D. The trailer has a playful and adventurous touch, showcasing relative newcomer Asa Butterfield as the titular character and Chloe Moretz as his new friend. In the supporting field, Sacha Baron Cohen plays the misfortunate Station Inspector; I guess Scorsese didn’t find Bruno too funny. 30 Seconds to Mars provides the song in the background with “Kings and Queens,” the same song used in The Legends of the Guardians trailer. Hopefully Hugo won’t flop like that movie . . . I’m sure the title was shortened to explicitly prevent such a fate.

John Carter (2012)
Release Date: March 9th, 2012
Cast: Taylor Kitsch, Lynn Collins, Mark Strong, Willem Dafoe
Director: Andrew Stanton

John Carter, based on the Barsoom series by Edgar Rice Burroughs, takes Stanton out of his comfort zone and into live-action, albeit with motion-capture effects. Andrew Stanton has found fantastic commercial and critical success at Pixar with Finding Nemo (MRQE Metric: 86) and WALL-E (MRQE Metric: 88), both among the best CGI animated movies of all time. Although John Carter is not a Pixar production, Stanton has kept Pixar’s ability to attract the best team, including Michael Giacchino, who scored Up and Super 8, and Michael Chabon, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author who had a hand in the script. The new trailer captures the harsh otherworldliness of Mars with beautiful cinematography but those campy costumes looks iffy, and Taylor Kitsch has never starred in anything as big as this. John Carter’s story involves the titular former military captain, played by Taylor Kitsch, standing between two warring societies on Mars.

Contagion (2011)
Release Date: September 9th, 2011
Cast: Matt Damon, Marion Cotillard, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow, Laurence Fishbourne
Director: Steven Soderbergh

Steven Soderbergh announced his retirement for 2012 a few months ago, and since then he’s has no trouble compiling a star-studded cast for his last few movies. Contagion is no exception, with a headlining cast made up nearly entirely of Oscar nominees. The apocalyptic trailer, involving a virus outbreak, sounds like the premise of a generic zombie movie or a hand-sanitizer commercial gone too far, but knowing Soderbergh we’re in for something more special than that.

Poster Watch: The Hunger Games (2012)
Release Date: March 23rd, 2012
Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson
Director: Gary Ross

Here’s a digital poster for the upcoming The Hunger Games, based on the bestselling book by Suzanne Collins. The Hunger Games takes place in a dystopian future where the United States no longer exists and instead one city, The Capitol, controls several colonies. Each year, the colonies are forced to submit two children to fight the children from the other colonies to death for The Capitol’s entertainment. Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) is chosen as a contender, but doesn’t submit so easily.


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  9. Finally gotta watch it just now. My main gripe with this film is that it is, simply put, boring. None of the action set pieces are particularly thrilling, original or innovative. I was bored sitting through much of this film. I truly can't believe it! Although I will say that I thought the first fight between Bane and Batman was well done. Apart from that and some incredible CGI? The lack of interesting characters, original dialog and exciting action set pieces made The Dark Knight Rises a dull experience.

  10. The Dark Knight Rises has an intelligence, epic thrust and visual grandeur...

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