TRAILER: Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
Directed by: Rob Marshall
Written by: Ted Elliot and Terry Rossio
Starring: Johnny Depp, Penelope Cruz, Ian McShane, Geoffrey Rush

The third film never exactly left the franchise concluded and satisfied. With a small cliffhanger, another billion in the bank and a chance to make swords swing out at audiences in 3D, Disney brings back the beloved peculiar swashbuckling pirate saga with Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.

Whether there is an audience demand or a creative reason to refuel the franchise or not is not a concern to the studio that is likely to pocket another billion for the fourth installment after worldwide box office gets boosted by 3D. Taking the title from a the 1988 Tim Powers’ novel which shares plot elements with the film, Disney plucks Rob Marshall to take over the Gore Verbinski directed franchise. After coming off of last year’s overhyped flop Nine, Marshall uses his expertise in stylization and glamour seen in Chicagoand Memoirs of Geisha to add a splash to the series. Continue reading

TRAILER: The Social Network

The Social Network
Directed by: David Fincher
Written by: Aaron Sorkin (screenplay), Ben Mezrich (book)
Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Rashida Jones, and Justin Timberlake

There’s always that early fall movie that gets ridiculously good reviews.  Last year it was Precious, and this year it looks like David Fincher’s Facebook exposé The Social Network.  Already hailed as a classic by publications as diverse as Rolling Stone and Film Comment, it looks to be yet another “movie of the moment,” much like Up in the Air. It’s hard pressed to make that kind of judgment until the movie actually comes out, but the trailer itself doesn’t speak this highly of the movie.

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TRAILER: Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps
Directed by: Oliver Stone
Written by: Allan Loeb & Stephan Schiff
Starring: Michael Douglas, Shia LaBeouf, Carey Mulligan, and Josh Brolin

It’s kind of weird that with the slew of franchise reboots and unwanted fifth entries in series, Oliver Stone has decided to make a franchise out of his 80’s exploration of the costs of big money.  Even when you look at the times we’re in, it seems odd that Stone wouldn’t just make a completely different movie with different characters that explored the modern age.  But here we are, leaving one of the worst summers in recent memory, heading into a fall that hopefully lifts the year up.  Stone can either help or hinder with his oddly risky sequel, and from the looks of the trailer, he may in fact knock it out of the park.

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TRAILER: Salt

Salt
Directed by: Phillip Noice
Written by: Kurt Wimmer & Brian Helgeland (screenplay)
Starring: Angelina Jolie, Liev Schreiber, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Zoe Lister Jones

Angelina Jolie typically has two types of roles.  The bad-ass action chick, a la Wanted, or the heavy dramatic roles, a la Changeling.  This summer, she will be playing more of the former, with a little of the heavy stuff mixed in.

Salt, from director Phillip Noice, seems from the trailer to be a summer action flick filled with acting talent and perhaps a plot that doesn’t suck.  The thrills in the trailer seem to be grounded in some kind of distorted realism.  Jolie appears to be playing kind of a girl Superman, hiding in broad daylight and not wearing a mask when she becomes the ass-kicker.

Liev Schreiber also stars in the movie, so it’s nice to see that Mr. Noice appears to be favoring talent over names that will just sell, though Jolie will do just that.  The trailer hits all of the normal bells and whistles when it comes to this kind of intrigue-based action/thriller.

It sets up the kidnapped boyfriend premise while interspersing some well choreographed action sequences featuring Angelina tasing some meddling policemen.  In all, it appears to be a typical summer flick, though it may end up being more or less than either of those by its July 23rd release date.

Highs: The casting, especially that of Angelina Jolie.  It’s always nice to see her throttling cronies.

Lows: No real complaints with the trailer other than it’s mundane, over-used structure.  Would it kill people to have a trailer like the one for A Serious Man?

Trailer Grade: B+