Saturday, February 15, 2014

films that look interesting

I love watching preview trailers on iTunes, and while most of the previews I see are for crap films, there are, on occasion, a few flicks that look as if they might be worth a viewing. Here's a short list of movies that have recently caught my eye:

• "Joe," starring Nicholas Cage and Tye Sheridan

This looks to be the story of a man with a dark past who befriends an abused kid. So long as the abuser gets his comeuppance, I'm in.

• "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," starring Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, and Samuel L. Jackson
I'm fueled mainly by morbid curiosity. I missed the first "Captain America," but might see this one, which also features Robert Redford.

• "Particle Fever," directed by Mark Levinson
A documentary about the Large Hadron Collider and the pursuit of the elusive Higgs boson.

• "Jimmy P.," directed by Arnaud Desplechin, starring Benicio Del Toro and Mathieu Amalric
A film supposedly based on the true story of a troubled Native American World War II veteran who intrigues a French anthropologist. Looks mighty interesting.

• "Girl on a Bicycle," starring Nora Tschirner, Vincenzo Amato, and Paddy Considine
I don't normally go for romantic comedies, but the trailer shows a scene in which three people are screaming at each other in three different languages (French, English, and Italian)—a moment that I immediately found charming. Polyglots tempt me every time.

• "The Grand Budapest Hotel," directed by Wes Anderson, starring Ralph Fiennes, Tony Revolori, Willem Dafoe, Jeff Goldblum, Jason Schwartzman, Jude Law, Tilda Swinton, Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody
I'm not a fan of Wes Anderson's quirky notion of comedy. I saw "Rushmore" and didn't like it. I saw "The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou" and didn't like it. It's against my better judgment that I'm putting this film on my list, but the preview actually looked funny for once. Someone needs to explain to me what Bill Murray sees in Wes Anderson, and why they keep collaborating on films.

• "Odd Thomas," directed by Steven Sommers and starring Anton "Chekov" Yelchin
It's "The Sixth Sense" meets "Army of Darkness" meets "Constantine." The selling point is that the movie is based on a Dean Koontz novel (I've never read a single Koontz book). Still, the trailer looks semi-promising.

• "The Amazing Spider-Man 2," starring Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, and Jamie Foxx as Electro
The only reason I want to see this film is to see Jamie Foxx as Electro. I never saw the first reboot; wasn't interested. This looks more interesting.

• "Tim's Vermeer," directed by Teller (of Pen and Teller)
Fascinating premise: an inventor and graphic designer named Tim Jenison tries to solve the riddle of how Vermeer was able to paint so photo-realistically. The documentary is essentially the chronicle of one man's attempt to reinvent the wheel. Does he do it? Can he create a Vermeer so authentic that experts will be fooled into thinking it's an actual "lost" Vermeer? I have to see this.

• "Le Week-end," starring Jim Broadbent, Lindsay Duncan, and Jeff Goldblum
An aging couple comes back to Paris for the first time since their long-ago honeymoon. Looks charming.

• "Sabotage," starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Olivia Williams, Mireille Enos, Sam Worthington, Harold Perrineau, and Terrence Howard
This could be a good, solid, ass-kicking action flick or a total turd. But the preview looks good, and what I like most about it is that Arnold seems to be playing someone fallible and vulnerable. Perhaps, as he gets up there in years, he's decided to pull a Clint Eastwood and reveal his weaknesses instead of trying to preserve his 80s-era image as an invincible, inhuman superhero. Dialogue seems solid, and the story looks almost as if it might be intense. This will probably be a better vehicle for Arnold than his two earlier, post-gubernatorial efforts, "The Last Stand" and "Escape Plan." (Watch the red-band trailer here. A red-band trailer is a trailer that includes all the naughty stuff, like swearing and boobies, that you can't see in a normal trailer.)


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