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Trailer Snark (October 2, 2015 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!

Last Week: Animated Adam Sandler takes the top of the box office and virtually guarantees us a second sequel to Hotel Transylvania with over $47 million in its opening weekend.  The Intern, which was collectively panned by our panel, took second place with over $18 million.  The rest of the world must have seen a different trailer to sell that many tickets!  Scorch Trials, last week’s box office champ, slipped to third place ($14M/$51.6M).  Everest came in fourth place as it expanded to more theaters ($13M/$23M).  Black Mass was fifth ($11.5M/$42.6M).  The Visit in sixth ($6.7M/$52.2M).  The Perfect Guy took seventh ($4.7M/$48.8M).  War Room was eighth ($4.2M/$55.9M).  In ninth place was the debut of Eli Roth’s The Green Inferno with $3.5M.  And Sicario continued its slow expansion into more theaters for tenth place ($1.7M/$2.3M), but it will be in much wider circulation this week.  And now on to this week’s contenders….

The Martian (20th Century Fox) – Drama
Rated PG-13 for some strong language, injury images, and brief nudity.
Tag Line: Help is only 140 million miles away.
Starring: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Jeff Daniels, Kate Mara, Sean Bean
Plot: During a manned mission to Mars, Astronaut Mark Watney is presumed dead after a fierce storm and left behind by his crew. But Watney has survived and finds himself stranded and alone on the hostile planet. With only meager supplies, he must draw upon his ingenuity, wit and spirit to subsist and find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive.
Running Time: 141 minutes

Chris: The last time Matt Damon was stranded on a planet, he turned out to be a real jerk.  This is his chance for a do-over!  BTW, the movie looks fantastic!
Rob: Finally a film I can sink my teeth into.  Looks amazing and with all the amazing discoveries being made about the red planet by NASA currently, it will be interesting to see how close the film comes to still fitting in with our new picture of Mars.
Jessica: This is what I’ve been waiting for!
Ken: I wanted to go into space so badly when I was a kid, and if I’m being totally I honest I still do. That trailer was awesome. It had me feeling like 6 years old again. I can’t wait to see this. We can watch the rest of the trailers, but this is my pick.

The Walk (Sony) – Drama/Biography
Rated PG for thematic elements involving perilous situations, and for some nudity, language, brief drug references and smoking
Tag Line:  Every dream begins with a single step.
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Charlotte LeBon
Plot: In 1974, high-wire artist Philippe Petit recruits a team of people to help him realize his dream: to walk the the immense void between the World Trade Center towers.
Running Time: 123 minutes

Ken: This would make for an amazing iMax experience. Spoiler alert, Philippe Petit the guy whose life this movie is based on, still alive.
Chris: Not saying it does not look good, but Man on a Wire was the genuine article and available for all to see.
Rob: An interesting story, but not for the big screen.  Renter.
Jessica: It’s not The Martian? Yeah, don’t care.

Freeheld (Lionsgate) – Biography/Drama
Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements, language and sexuality
Tag Line: A true story of love and injustice.
Starring: Julianne Moore, Ellen Page, Michael Shannon, and Steve Carell
Plot: New Jersey police lieutenant, Laurel Hester, and her registered domestic partner, Stacie Andree, both battle to secure Hester’s pension benefits when she is diagnosed with terminal cancer.
Running Time: 103 minutes

Jessica: Let’s see, no Mars, no space hijinks? All set.
Ken: This one is sure to be a hit with the Westboro crowd. I love seeing Ellen Page playing an openly gay character and making an honest argument for marriage equality.
Chris: Partner rights are the subject for a same sex couple, coming on the heels of the Civil Rights themed Stonewall film released last week.  Julianne Moore is a quality performer, and I am sure I will catch this one on the small screen.
Rob: Powerful story about equality in love and basic human rights.  Worth a look on the small screen IMO.

Shanghai (RADiUS-TWC) – Mystery/Drama
Rated R for strong violence, some drug use and brief language
Tag Line: In a world filled with secrets, solving a mystery can be murder.
Starring: John Cusack, Li Gong, Yun-Fat Chow
Plot: A ’40s period piece which revolves around an American expat who returns to Shanghai in the months before Pearl Harbor due to the death of his friend.
Running Time: 105 minutes

Rob: Could be decent.  Yun-Fat always impresses me, but not compelling enough to draw me to the theater based on this trailer.
Jessica: Matt Damon, where are you??
Ken: Having spent almost 3 years living in Shanghai, I was very interested in the idea of a period piece set in the Paris of Asia. But the trailer was sort of meh, and the all star cast makes me think the budget for this film must have been huge. The fact that it is being released in the States 5 years after its international release makes me think the rest of the world didn’t think too much of it.
Chris: I was intrigued until I found out the movie was made and released overseas in 2010.  Yeah, you read that right.  Why did it take so long to make it to the US?  Warning bells….

Partisan (Well Go USA Entertainment) – Drama/Thriller
Not Rated
Tag Line:  None
Starring:  Vincent Cassel, Jeremy Chabriel
Plot: Alexander, a boy who has been raised in a sequestered commune, finds that his increasing unwillingness to fall in line puts him on a collision course with Gregori, the society’s charismatic and domineering leader.
Running Time: 98 minutes

Chris: Subversive counter-culture political leader runs his own commune promising shocking and disturbing results…..not getting me to the theater.
Ken: When you create a society built on the principals of rebellion against the established authority, can you really be that surprised when the children, ya  know, rebel against authority?
Rob: Looks disturbing.  A man and women raise a group of children to live outside of societal norms in their own little kingdom, but the oldest boy turns towards darkness.

Addicted to Fresno (Gravitas Ventures) – Comedy
Not Rated
Tag Line: None
Starring: Natasha Lyonne, Judy Greer, Molly Shannon, Aubrey Plaza, Ron Livingston
Plot: This comedy tells the story of two sisters, a lesbian and a sex-addict, who work as maids at a hotel in a city named Fresno. Their lives change when one of the sisters thinks that they might have accidentally killed a man.
Running Time: 85 minutes

Rob: Co-Dependent sisters and their raunchy escapades as maids in Fresno.  Could be funny.  Could be awful.  Can’t decide, but leaning towards awful.
Ken: Looks very weird and offbeat but it is being driven by a stellar cast of comedians who excel at oddball humor.  I also think it could be funny, could be awful, but unlike Rob I’m leaning more towards funny.
Jessica: Nope. It’s not on Mars.
Chris: Was that trailer supposed to be funny?

Tickets Purchased:  Four tickets for the unanimous winner….The Martian

Matt Damon studies the oft-overlooked dermatological effects of deep space travel
Matt Damon studies the oft-overlooked dermatological effects of deep space travel