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Trailer Snark (September 22, 2017 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Eric from View from Above, Robert from Cards and Counters, Wayne from The Dope Sheet, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Kingsman: The Golden Circle (20th Century Fox) – Action/Adventure/Comedy
Rated R for sequences of strong violence, drug content, language throughout and some sexual material
Tag Line: Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.
Starring: Taron Egerton, Colin Firth, Julianne Moore
Plot: When their headquarters are destroyed and the world is held hostage, the Kingsman’s journey leads them to the discovery of an allied spy organization in the US. These two elite secret organizations must band together to defeat a common enemy.
Running Time: 141 minutes

Rob F: I pledge my spear and sword to Prince Oberyn of House Martell. Pedro Pascal is a phenomenal actor and he isn’t even listed in the credits. Halle Berry isn’t half-bad either. Overall, this looks like an action-packed, fun romp through “The Secret Service” comic world created by Mark Millar and Dave Gibbons. Sign me up.
Wayne: Action packed with a killer cast. I hope this one lives up to the hype. The first one was surprisingly good and has set the bar high for the sequel. I’m buying this.
Chris: The very first time I read Mark Millar’s The Secret Service #1, I knew this Kingsman property was something special. The first movie only solidified that position. We may not get Samual L Jackson’s villainous lisp, but you know what we get is going to be good.
Jim: First one was a decent actioner, this one looks to be more of the same—rental. In the barrage of images laboring to get my attention, the coolest was of Colin Firth firing from his umbrella. 

The Lego Ninjago Movie (Warner Bros) – Animation/Action/Adventure
Rated PG for some mild action and rude humor
Tag Line: Find your inner piece.
Starring: Jackie Chan, Dave Franco, Fred Armisen, Michael Pena
Plot: Six young ninjas Lloyd, Jay, Kai, Cole, Zane and Nya are tasked with defending their island home, called Ninjago. By night, they’re gifted warriors, using their skills and awesome fleet of vehicles to fight villains and monsters. By day, they’re ordinary teens struggling against their greatest enemy: high school.
Running Time: 101 minutes

Jim: More high octane humor from the Lego people, quips and gags whipping by faster than the human brain can process them. Rental.
Rob F: My six year old would never forgive me if I didn’t bring her to see this one. She’s been talking about it for months and is a huge fan of the toys and the seven seasons of the show. What’s not to love? Legos plus ninjas plus time with my youngest. Hard to beat that! It’s spinjitsu time!
Wayne: Who doesn’t like Lego’s? I don’t think this will be as successful as Lego Batman, but kids love this stuff and it has spilled over to adults with the Lego Movie. Ya, I’ll check it out. I’m buying this.
Chris: I previously doubted the Lego Batman movie based on the trailer, and was proven wrong. I am not going to doubt the creators again, but it won’t be on the big screen for me.

Battle of the Sexes (Fox Searchlight) – Biography/Comedy/Sports
Rated PG-13 for some sexual content and partial nudity
Tag Line: He made a bet.  She made history.
Starring: Emma Stone, Steve Carell, Andrea Riseborough
Plot: The true story of the 1973 tennis match between World number one Billie Jean King and ex-champ and serial hustler Bobby Riggs.
Running Time: 121 minutes

Chris: It’s 40 Year Old Wash-up vs. Billy Jean Tennis Queen. Yeah, I am interested, but again it won’t be in the cineplex.
Jim: Now we’re cookin.’ Two great actors in a story worth constructing a movie around.
Rob F: Emma Stone vs. Steve Carell; Billy Jean King vs. Bobby Riggs. Based on the true story of a fabled tennis match that took place in 1973 at the Houston Astrodome. It may still be the most viewed tennis match in history. The build up was intense and showcased emerging feminism and of course it’s counterpart. “I’m gonna put the show back in chauvinism.” ~Bobby Riggs. Looks entertaining, and would definitely watch at home, but not a big screen take for this moviegoer.
Wayne: I’m old enough to remember seeing this on Wide World of Sports. I’m not certain this movie will be overly successful, but the cast alone has me sold and I’m interested in the story of how this came together. I’m buying this.

Friend Request (Entertainment Studios) – Horror/Thriller
Rated R for horror violence, disturbing images, and language
Tag Line: Evil is trending.
Starring: Alycia Debnam-Carey, William Mosely
Plot: A popular college student graciously accepts a social outcast’s online friend request, but soon finds herself fighting a demonic presence that wants to make her lonely by killing her closest friends.
Running Time: 92 minutes

Wayne: (yawn) Ya, not buying this. Moving on.
Chris: This is my genre, but this looks woefully bad. Deleting this Friend Request.
Jim: Laughable, but fascinating. It’s schlock, but might be worth looking at for the cheese factor alone.
Rob F: Paranormal unfriend request on Facebook. Meh. Not my genre.

Victoria & Abdul (Focus Features) – Biography/Drama/History
Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements and language
Tag Line: History’s most unlikely friendship.
Starring: Judi Dench, Ali Fazal
Plot: Queen Victoria strikes up an unlikely friendship with a young Indian clerk named Abdul Karim.
Running Time: 112 minutes

Rob F: Judi Dench as Queen of England and Empress of India. Based on a true and what looks to be interesting story about an unlikely friendship and the evolving human condition. Not a big screen flick, but I’d enjoy it.
Wayne: This looks like a charming story, but not enough to pull me into a theater. I will check it out when it comes to Netflix. Going to sell this.
Chris: Long Live the Queen! Judi Dench is a fantastic actress, and this one could be one of those understated gems, humanizing the British royalty. But didn’t we just see virtually the same film just a few weeks back (The Viceroy’s something or other), except that one was in India.
Jim: And one for the Mahstahpiece Theatuh crowd—Dame Judi’s always worth watching, looks worthwhile.

Stronger (Lionsgate) – Biography/Drama
Rated R for language throughout, some graphic injury images, and brief sexuality/nudity
Tag Line: Strength defines us.
Starring: Jake Gylenhaal, Tatiana Maslany, Miranda Richardson
Plot: Stronger is the inspiring real life story of Jeff Bauman, an ordinary man who captured the hearts of his city and the world to become a symbol of hope following the infamous 2013 Boston Marathon bombing.
Running Time: 116 minutes

Jim: Yeah, I tried to fight it, but it got me. I felt the lump forming in my throat about 15 seconds in.
Rob F: I can’t. I just can’t watch this. It’s too soon. When I do watch it, you can bet it will be in the privacy of my own home. #BostonStrong #FTerrorism
Wayne: This movie is primed to pull at your heart strings. I’m going to sell this though. The struggle is real for this person, but I’m just not compelled to see it in the theater.
Chris: My heart was just ripped from my chest with that trailer. Yeah, I am in.

Woodshock (A24) – Drama/Thriller
Rated R for drug use, language and a scene of violence
Tag Line: None
Starring: Kirsten Dunst, Joe Cole
Plot: A woman falls deeper into paranoia after taking a deadly drug.
Running Time: 100 minutes

Chris: I love Kirsten Dunst, but this movie looks a bit too psychedelic for my taste. Cheech & Chong meets Cabin Fever weird.
Jim: Huh?
Rob F: Pass. Not even really sure what was happening in that trailer, but I think that was their goal.
Wayne: After seeing Mother!, I’m gun shy about going into a movie that I’m not certain what I’m going to get. This looks strange and familiar and I’m not willing to put my money on the line that I’m going to get a story worth seeing. I’m selling this.

Tickets Purchased: Two for Kingsman (Wayne and Chris), One for Ninjago (Rob), and One for Battle of the Sexes (Jim)

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Trailer Snark (September 16, 2016 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Rob from Spector for Hire, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Your trailer snark now comes with more thrills and less fill!  Let’s get right down to it!

Bridget Jones’s Baby (Miramax) – Comedy/Romance
Rated R for language, sex references and some nudity
Tag Line: We’re going to need bigger pants.
Starring: Renee Zellwegger, Colin Firth
Plot: Bridget’s focus on single life and her career is interrupted when she finds herself pregnant, but with one hitch … she can only be fifty percent sure of the identity of her baby’s father.
Running Time: 122 minutes

Jessica: Don’t make me watch this again. Ever. I liked the first movie and that’s it. After that I have no interest in a boring, self-centered moron stumbling about doing dumb things with other dumb people.
Jim: Looking forward to this, along with the wife. Nice to see Renee Zellweger in something high-profile again.
Chris: I make it a point to not read women’s diaries, let alone watch one unfold on the screen before me.
Ken: Yawn. Wake me up when it’s time for Bridget Jones’ funeral.

Blair Witch (Lionsgate) – Horror
Rated R for language, terror and some disturbing images
Tag Line: There’s something evil hiding in the woods.
Starring: James Allen McCune, Callie Hernandez
Plot: After discovering a video showing what he believes to be his sister’s experiences in the demonic woods of the Blair Witch, James and a group of friends head to the forest in search of his lost sibling.
Running Time: 89 minutes

Ken: Looks a lot like the original, but with a little less shake in the cam. I hope one of these kids was smart enough to bring a weapon with them.
Jessica: I loved the original and I am hesitant to say that this looks promising, it’ll never be as freaky deaky as the original, but maybe? (She says, feeling hopefully optimistic because she wants to see a really scary movie).
Jim: The original’s a masterpiece, but this looks pretty cookie-cutter to me. Leave well enough alone.
Chris: Is this a remake or a sequel?  Either way, I am hesitant.  I found the first found footage movie to be a bit underwhelming.

Snowden (Open Road) – Drama/Thriller/Biography
Rated R for language and some sexuality/nudity
Tag Line:  The only safe place is on the run.
Starring:  Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Melissa Leo, Zachary Quinto
Plot: The NSA’s illegal surveillance techniques are leaked to the public by one of the agency’s employees, Edward Snowden, in the form of thousands of classified documents distributed to the press.
Running Time: 134 minutes

Chris: You have my attention.  Hero or villain.  I am with Jess, as I cannot decide.  Oliver Stone is a bit of a wonk, but his films are entertaining.
Ken: Oliver Stone has won a lot of awards for his controversial, political films, so there’s potential here. I wish this was a documentary and not a Hollywood affair though.
Jessica: I honestly am not sure how I feel about the real Snowden, but I adore JGL and would watch this at home to see one side of this tale.
Jim: Looks pretty intense—with the combo  of the story, JGL and Oliver Stone, could be worth a peek.

Wild Oats (Weinstein Company) – Comedy/Drama
Rated PG-13 for sexual content
Tag Line: None
Starring: Demi Moore, Jessica Lange
Plot: Everything changes for Eva when she receives a life insurance check accidentally made out for $5,000,000 instead of the expected $50.000. She and her best friend take the money and head out for the adventure of a lifetime.
Running Time: 86 minutes

Jim: Have to admit this looks pretty funny—always good to see a buddy comedy trailer that doesn’t make me cringe.
Chris: I’d catch this on the small screen while none of my guy friends were looking.
Ken: Grannies gone wild. Pass.
Jessica: Oh my gosh, this movie had me as soon as I realized who the leads are. Not a theater flick, but I will totally check this out. Two amazing actresses in what looks to be a pretty funny story.

The Good Neighbor (Vertical Entertainment) – Thriller
Not Rated
Tag Line:  You never know who’s watching.
Starring:  James Caan, Logan Miller
Plot: A pair of mischievous high school kids create the illusion of a haunting on an unsuspecting neighbor. While keeping his every reaction under surveillance, they see much more than they bargained for.
Running Time: 98 minutes

Jessica: I LOVE James Caan, I’d watch this with glee to see him being evil.
Jim: Looks like this could be  a good one for James Caan…looks interesting.
Chris: Oh yeah.  Thrillers are always more effective when they are “close to home”.  I haven’t seen much of James Caan over the past couple of years, but his turn as a sinister neighbor looks brilliant from the trailer.
Ken: Of all the people in the neighborhood, why would you pick the creepy, mentally unstable, old man that lives alone to mess with? The trailer was intense and definitely had me in suspense.

Miss Stevens (The Orchard) – Comedy/Drama
Not Rated
Tag Line:  Everyone needs a chaperone.
Starring:  Lily Rabe, Oscar Nunez
Plot: A comedy focused on a teacher who chaperones a group of high schoolers to a state drama competition.
Running Time: 86 minutes

Ken: A must miss.
Jessica: This looks adorably uncomfortable. I do like Lily Rabe from American Horror Story and I’d probably catch this at home one night. Looks enjoyable, but weird and quirky. Like me!
Jim: Seconding JL’s comment, looks enjoyable.
Chris:  I was relieved that it didn’t go down some creepy Mary Jo Laterneau road.

Silicon Cowboys (FilmRise) – Documentary
Not Rated
Tag Line:  They risked their future to create ours.
Starring: A bunch of real people.
Plot: Three friends dream up the Compaq portable computer at a Texas diner in 1981, and soon find themselves battling mighty IBM, for PC supremacy. Their improbable journey altered the future of computing and shaped the world we now know.
Running Time: 77 minutes

Chris: Always interested in tech giant documentaries…..this one is no exception, but I will stream it on Netflix instead.
Ken: I’m a techie and a documentary junkie, so this is a definite watch for me.
Jessica: While I get how important these guys were to the computing world, I got bored halfway through and started doing other stuff. Not for me!
Jim: This looks really interesting, and definitely worth a rental.

Tickets Purchased: Two for The Good Neighbor (Jessica and Chris), One for Wild Oats (Jim), and One for Silicon Cowboys (Ken)

Not sure James Caan's turn as a Good Neighbor even has wifi, but he sure has some secrets....yikes.
Not sure James Caan’s turn as a Good Neighbor even has wifi, but he sure has some secrets….yikes.