Thursday, January 12, 2012

FoW Movie Trailer Rundown

In addition to TKAA, I write for the blog Fistful of Words on a weekly basis. Recently, FoW asked me to team up with high school friend Stephan Rabbitt on a movie trailer review column where we watch trailers for upcoming films (both good and bad) and comment on them. It may sound a little dull, but it turned out to be fun and humor-driven so I think you'll like it:

FoW Movie Trailers Rundown

By David Hammock and Stephan Rabbitt

From the ridiculous to the ridiculously awesome, movie trailers are always the best. But it's not just the watching that makes movie trailers fun. Cracking jokes, sharing our unbridled excitement, or reacting in utter horror at a bad casting choice. Those are the things make movie trailers so great. In this regular feature, funnyman David Hammock and self described "trailer addict" Stephan Rabbitt will be emailed a batch of new or buzzworthy trailers. What ensues is what you can read below. The trailers aren't all good. In fact, some are downright awful. But that doesn't mean you can't have a good time reading Stephan's and David's reactions. Enjoy!

Haywire


Hammock: This film stars MMA standout Gina Carano (the only female mixed martial artist I've ever heard of besides Chun Li). Since the trailer is about as long as an MMA round, I'll treat it as such. The trailer is about to start. I'm pumped. I'm in it for the long haul. Then, five seconds in, Channing Tatum shows up and I'm forced to tap out. Round over. Okay, not really, but this trailer didn't really have a fighting (haha, fighting) chance with me. Despite having a soft spot for fellow Atlanta native director Steven Soderbergh, this movie and others like it don't particularly interest me. I don't doubt that the movie will be well-made with Soderbergh at the helm. With Ewan McGregor and Michael Douglas it'll be well acted too, but for an action/thriller to appeal to me, there's gotta be a guaranteed great story... and I don't expect that here. My bet is that Haywire is a lot like Taken. That's a good thing for some crowds, but for me that means it's only a decent rental... though Miss Carano is certainly more entertaining to look at than Liam Neeson.

Rabbitt: Thanks, David.  You are 100% responsible for new found ability to name exactly one female MMA fighter. Miss Carano was also a part of another powerful fighting force…American Gladiators!  She played the gladiator Crush in the failed reboot of the most amazing show on television from my childhood.  With that in mind, (with this genre of movie really) the director just needs to ask you one question, “Are you not entertained? Is that not why you’re here?!” Fine, two questions. Since no one is going to mistake this for a Best Picture candidate, the key for me is to make sure the entertainment value isn’t overwhelmed by a dreadful storyline and poor acting.  With Soderbergh in the director's chair and a slew of reputable actors in tow, I think this one has a chance to be success story. Carano performing her own stunts adds some credibility to the fighting scenes and I am a huge fan of Michael Fassbender, who has been really busy in 2011.  I think this movie has just enough to overcome my disdain for Channing Tatum..and maybe I’ll go just to watch Carano beat the crap out of him.

Wrong

Rabbitt: I mean, the trailer is pretty self-explanatory, no? "Why?" That really says it all. It is a huge tribute to whoever made this incredibly short trailer, that it generated as much interest as it did for me. Small snippets of seemingly every scene in the movie leave me with tons of questions. Why? What? How? Who? A few recognizable faces led by William Fichtner (a classic "Hey, that guy" guy) and Alexis Dziena (Entourage, for me) head up the cast of this quirky drama. I've never heard of the writer/director but that Sundance logo has grown to become very enticing to me these days (ripped from the pages of the "Stuff White People Like" calendar). Honestly, I am very interested in this movie. I'll be right there with the rest of you leaving the theater pretending I understand why the clock said 7:60. What? You don't get it?  It's obvious...

Hammock: They sell "Stuff White People Like" calendars? Put me down for two. You know, I watched this Wrong trailer once and had no idea how to respond, so I watched it again, because as we all know, two Wrongs make you write. (Is it too early for "Worst Joke of the Year" nominations?) Alas, I think you hit the nail on the head, Stephan. It's quirky and Sundancy enough to be alluring. The HBO-alum cast of Fichtner, Dziena (whose character inNick and Norah's Infinite Playlist indirectly caused a former girlfriend to break up with me... another story for another time) and the guy who plays Kenny Powers' sidekick make me optimistic about this enigmatic film. So, I'm with you. Let's give Wrong a chance, pretending to get all the parts we don't and laughing hard at the parts we do. What do you say to a 7:60pm showing?

GI Joe: Retaliation

Hammock: Great. More Channing Tatum. Is Channing even a real name? It sounds like it's something you do; like planking or Tebowing. Anyway... I actually saw the first GI Joe movie for the first time a few weeks ago and totes fell asleep, but I managed to stay awake long enough to get the basic idea. Elite fighting squad saves the world. But, oh no! In the sequel, the government murders all the Joes except for the Rock, the chick from Friday Night Lights, and Channing freakin' Tatum! (The government fails us again... R.I.P. whatever Wayans was in the last one.) However will good prevail? By enlisting the help of John McClane of course! With the writers of Zombieland behind this one, there's a chance it won't be completely horrible, but I'll probably never see this movie, so I'll never know... and not knowing is half the battle.

Rabbitt: Victory formation. I should just take a knee on this one. The first GI Joe has been available for free on Netflix Instant for quite some time now. All I have to do is go into the living room and press a couple of buttons and I can watch it for free in the comfort of my own snuggie…and I still haven’t watched it. That's how much I care about this sequel. Did I miss any important plot points… No? Okay, now that I’m caught up…you know how you make a ninja sword fight more dangerous? Conduct said fight while hanging on the side of a mountain, obvi. I agree that the writers of Zombieland give this movie a small glimmer of hope. But,unless they invoke zombie apocalypse survival rule #2 and double-tap ChanningTatum in the title sequence, there is no reason for me to see this movie.

ATM

Rabbitt: I had a hard time with this review. You have the creeper in the Eskimo jacket doing his best Saw XXVI impression on these kids in an ATM in the middle of a parking lot. I have to say, the Eskimo creeper is probably the most sensible person in the entire trailer. I mean, at least he looks prepared for the -3 degree weather. He probably uses credit cards and does most of his banking online, too. I know he wasn't worried at all when he saw those flashing yellow lights either. Anytime you are relying on a parking lot (or mall) security guard for your safety, you have no chance. All the security guard can be good for is a diversion. That Eskimo jacket doesn't look too aerodynamic.  Maybe make a run for it while he's offing the security guard. I probably won't be seeing this one...unless some rumors are circulating as to the identity of the Eskimo creeper... Honey Badger (takes what he wants), Saw clown mask guy (been there, done that), Channing Tatum (thought they were movie reviewers)? What do you make of this one David? Hopefully, more than I could!

Hammock: I'm with you, Stephan. I don't think ATM has a lot going for it other than the ATM booth itself is pretty nice and that the cast doesn't include our friend Channing Tatum. A movie revolving around characters who are trapped in a small space feels like something R. Kelly would come up with. Of course, R. Kelly contributed to childhood favorite Space Jamand the "Ignition Remix" is and will always be the first song on my party playlist, so maybe that's not the worst thing in the world. Still, it seems like a movie set almost entirely in one tiny room is limited and will be relying on the performances from the actors. And I don't know if the kid from Drake & Josh can pull it off. Even if he can, I just don't see what the movie can possibly offer me story-wise. Maybe it will be smarter than I think, but judging by how inexplicably far the car is parked from the ATM in this preview, I'm not expecting much in the smarts department. As much as we've put this movie down, I'm actually pulling for it to do well. Maybe someday it'll even find itself on my DVD shelf... right next to ATL.


LOL: Laughing Out Loud


Hammock: Pass. Oh, I can't pass? @$#&. ATM, you're suddenly looking like an Oscar-worthy flick. I'll be honest, I'm the kind of guy who likes the occasional chick flick, but this looks straight up like Bridget Jones' Diarrhea. Aside from the horrific title and the unintelligible plot, I don't think I can stand 90 minutes of Miley Cyrus. Usually, I stick up for tween stars. I can find good in Bieber and Selena, but there's something about Miss Cyrus I don't like. I think it's that she's a total ho-bag. "Oh she's just being Miley." Shut up, Leslie! The only redeeming part of this trailer is that at the 1:15 mark, the guy is playing guitar in front of one of the Dharma Initiative logos from Lost. Besides that, it was pure torture/ironic fun. So, does look like the worst movie ever? I'm nodding my head like "yeah," moving my hips like "yeah." What say you, Mr. Rabbitt?

Rabbitt: With the writer/director of LoL (the French version), this film promises to be… Sorry, I tried. This is the first time in my life I actually wished I was watching an episode of Punk’d. “LOL” is a remake of a European film, like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo… except there is no wildly successful international book series and instead of adding James Bond, they added Hannah Montana.  The only thing more obnoxious than watching this trailer is that Miley is LOL-ing all the way to the bank for this garbage. SMH.  Bt, Demi…WTF? You are an MTV movie award nominated actress; they don’t just hand those things out to anybody! I love the Dharma initiative reference. I just wish Drive Shaft was playing.  Also, I feel like I’ve seen footage of Miley attemptingto summon the smoke monster before.  IDK, maybe not.  But hey, here’s to ending on a high note.

Neither David Hammock nor Stephan Rabbitt have met Channing Tatum but you can follow them on Twitter @david_hammock and @itsrabbitt.