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Trailer Snark (November 10, 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!

Murder on the Orient Express (Twentieth Century Fox) – Crime/Drama/Mystery
Rated PG-13 for violence and thematic elements
Tag Line: Everyone is a suspect.
Starring: Kenneth Branagh, Michelle Pfeiffer, Penelope Cruz, Willem Dafoe
Plot: A lavish train ride unfolds into a stylish & suspenseful mystery. From the novel by Agatha Christie, Murder on the Orient Express tells of thirteen stranded strangers & one man’s race to solve the puzzle before the murderer strikes again.
Running Time: 114 minutes

Chris: I have been a fan of Agatha Christie mysteries ever since my days of roaming my local libraries halls as a wee lad. To see a high production version of one of her most classic stories come to life is something I will be glued to my seat for!
Jim: my favorite actress of all time, Michelle Pfeiffer, in an Agatha Christie movie. It’s just too much for me to handle. Add to that a great cast directed by the amazing Kenneth Branagh. Except for Star Wars and maybe Thor, this is the must-see of the holiday season.
Rob F: A classic Christie tale retold on the big screen again. Looks good, but if you already know the story from the book or the 1974 version of the film… But, hey this version’s got Olaf! Do you want to build a snowman?

Daddy’s Home 2 (Paramount Pictures) – Comedy
Rated PG-13 for suggestive material and some language
Tag Line: More Daddies. More problems.
Starring: Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, John Lithgow, Mel Gibson
Plot: Brad and Dusty must deal with their intrusive fathers during the holidays.
Running Time: 100 minutes

Rob F: The first one was good and this looks to be more of the same. Just not a big screen option for me.
Chris: I just love the chemistry between Wahlberg and Ferrell. Add in some Mel Gibson and John Lithgow as the polar opposite dad’s, and it looks like we may have a sequel winner!
Jim: I haven’t seen the original (I’ll have to), but this looks like a blast.

Three Billboards Outside Ebbings, Missouri (Fox Searchlight) – Comedy/Crime/Drama
Rated R for violence, language throughout, and some sexual references
Tag Line: None
Starring: Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell
Plot: In this darkly comic drama, a mother personally challenges the local authorities to solve her daughter’s murder, when they fail to catch the culprit.
Running Time: 115 minutes

Jim: One of two movies this week with lousy titles and trailers that scream DON’T SEE THIS MOVIE!
Rob F: Could be ok, but I’m not feeling it after that trailer. Certainly not a big screen trip for me.
Chris: A trailer as poorly cut and convoluted as the film was named.

Amanda & Jack Go Glamping (Gravitas Ventures) – Comedy/Drama/Romance
Not Rated
Tag Line: Love the one yurt with.
Starring: Amy Acker, Adam Canto, David Arquette
Plot: With his marriage and career against the ropes, dejected author Jack Spencer travels with his wife, Amanda, to an isolated glamping retreat in search of a spark. When a surprise double booking finds their private retreat anything but private, Jack spins into a comedic exploration of love, lost dreams, small-town-wisdom, and friendship with a miniature donkey to get over himself before he loses all he holds dear.
Running Time: 94 minutes

Chris: This movie’s fate has been sealed by the David Arquette kiss of death.
Jim: This is the other one (see Three Billboards comment). Gimme a break.
Rob F: Nope. Nope. Nope.

Thumper (The Orchard) – Crime/Drama/Thriller
Not Rated
Tag Line: None
Starring: Eliza Taylor, Pablo Schreiber, Lena Headey
Plot: Teens in a low income neighborhood are lured into working for a violent and dangerous drug dealer. When a new girl harboring a dark secret arrives in town, their relationship jeopardizes everything.
Running Time: 93 minutes

Rob F: Could be a possible rental down the line. It has Lena Headey after all.
Chris: With heroin addiction running rampant across the country, I guess you could say its timely. Too often these types of films tend to leave me cold and angry. I’ll pass.
Jim: Undoubtedly a problem in the world, and the movie probably needs to be seen by certain people. Just not me.

Tickets Purchased:  Two for Murder on the Orient Express (Chris and Jim) while Rob saves his money for repeat viewings of The Last Jedi in December.

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Trailer Snark (April 8th, 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!

Last Week:  DC owned the box office again this past week in spite of a massive drop in ticket sales for Batman v Superman.  The dueling duo took in another $52.3M for a total domestic haul of $261.4M in its second week of release.  Zootopia placed second with $20M and $275.9M overall.  My Big fat Greek Wedding 2 placed third ($11.1M/$36.4M).  The highest debut came from fourth place God’s Not Dead 2, which managed $8.1M.  Miracles from Heaven was right behind in fifth ($7.5M/$46.8M).  The rest of the top ten went as follows:  Allegiant ($5.7M/$56.3M), 10 Cloverfield Ln ($4.7M/$63.5M), Meet the Blacks ($4M/NEW), Eye in the Sky ($4M/$6.1M), and Deadpool ($3.5M/$355.1M).  Let’s take a look at what is rolling into theaters this weekend….

Hardcore Henry (STX Entertainment) – Action/Sci-Fi
Rated R for non-stop bloody brutal violence and mayhem, language throughout, sexual content/nudity and drug use
Tag Line: First they made him dangerous.  Then they made him mad.
Starring:  Sharlto Copley, Tim Roth, Haley Bennett
Plot: A first-person action film from the eyes of Henry, who’s resurrected from death with no memory. He must discover his identity and save his wife from a warlord with a plan to bio-engineer soldiers.
Running Time: 96 minutes

Chris: Gosh, the first person camera movies are getting about as old as “reality” TV.
Jim: I swear that some people who make trailers try to figure out the best way to keep people like me away. Case in point.
Jessica: I can’t deal with this. It makes me seasick. Big pass.

The Boss (Universal Pictures) – Comedy
Rated R for sexual content, language and brief drug use
Tag Line: Watch your assets.
Starring: Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Bell
Plot: A titan of industry is sent to prison after she’s caught for insider trading. When she emerges ready to rebrand herself as America’s latest sweetheart, not everyone she screwed over is so quick to forgive and forget.
Running Time: 99 minutes

Jessica: I adore McCarthy so I would totally see this at home. Not a theater flick but she does tickle me.
Chris: Please fire me!
Jim: There might be a good movie in here, but you wouldn’t know it from this idiotic trailer.

Demolition (Fox Searchlight) – Comedy/Drama
Rated R for language, some sexual references, drug use and disturbing behavior
Tag Line: LIFE: Some Disassembly Required.
Starring: Jake Gyllenhaal, Naomi Watts, Chris Cooper
Plot: As an investment banker struggles after losing his wife in a tragic car crash, his increasingly confessional series of letters to a vending machine company catch the attention of a customer service rep with whom he forms an unlikely connection.
Running Time: 100 minutes

Jim: Jake Gyllenhaal is amazing, might be worth a look.
Jessica: Good actors, interesting premise. Not a theater viewing but I would watch this at home.
Chris: Intriguing method of channeling hurt.  Not sure my desire for the melancholy is high enough with spring dawning, but I’ll certainly give this a look down the road.

The Invitation (Drafthouse Films) – Horror/Thriller
Not Rated
Tag Line: There is nothing to be afraid of.
Starring: Logan Marshall-Green, Michiel Huisman
Plot: While attending a dinner party at his former home, a man thinks his ex-wife and her new husband have sinister intentions for their guests.
Running Time: 100 minutes

Chris: You had me at “hello, and welcome to my absolutely sinister home”!
Jim: Love house party movies, especially creepy ones like this.
Jessica: Interesting. I’d watch this at home, I like a good psychological thriller and this could be one.

Louder Than Bombs (The Orchard) – Drama
Rated R for language, some sexual content, nudity and violent images
Tag Line: Break the silence.
Starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Gabriel Byrne, Isabelle Huppert
Plot: The fractious family of a father and his two sons confront their different feelings and memories of their deceased wife and mother, a famed war photographer.
Running Time: 109 minutes

Jessica: Eh. That’s about all I felt, eh.
Chris: Jesse Eisenberg is really turning out to be a treat to watch on film.  While I wouldn’t say his presence commands an audience, his delivery sure as heck makes up for it!
Jim: Looks like an intriguing rental. Jesse Eisenberg helps, maybe he’ll redeem himself for his overacting in Batman Vs. Superman (yes, overacted even for an over-the-top villain).

Mr. Right (Focus World) – Action/Comedy/Romance
Rated R for violence and language throughout
Tag Line: They make a killer couple.
Starring: Anna Kendrick, Sam Rockewell
Plot: A girl falls for the “perfect” guy, who happens to have a very fatal flaw: he’s a hitman on the run from the crime cartels who employ him.
Running Time: 90 minutes

Jim: Wrong. Sorry, couldn’t resist.
Jessica: I simply adore Rockwell so I was sold right away.
Chris: Not a chance, even if it were called Mrs. Right.

Tickets Purchased: Two for The Invitation (Jim and Chris) and Jessica stays at home with a good book!

I think he is a glass half full kind of guy.
I think he is a glass half full kind of guy.
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Trailer Snark (December 11, 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: The Hunger Games Mockingjay Part Two bested the competition again this week taking in $18.6M (added to its domestic haul of $227M).  Krampus was the highest and only debut in the top ten coming in at number two with $16M holiday horror dollars.  Creed and The good Dinosaur came in at three and four at a virtual $15.5M tie (Creed has achieved $65M domestically, while The Good Dinosaur has gone to $75.9M overall).  The fifth spot belonged to that British superhero James Bond as Spectre took in $5.4M ($184M overall).  The rest of the top ten went as follows:  The Night Before ($4.9M/$31.9M), The Peanuts Movie ($3.5M/$121.4M), Spotlight ($2.9M/$16.6M), Brooklyn ($2.4M/$11.2M), and The Secret in Their Eyes ($1.9M/$17.2M).   What does this weekend have in store for us?

In the Heart of the Sea (Warner Bros) – Adventure/Biography
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action and peril, brief startling violence, and thematic material
Tag Line: Experience the true encounter that inspired the myth Moby Dick.
Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Cillian Murphy, Brendan Gleeson
Plot: Based on the 1820 event, a whaling ship is preyed upon by a giant whale, stranding its crew at sea for 90 days, thousands of miles from home.
Running Time: 121 minutes

Chris:  Man vs Whale.  What does the tale of the tape say?  I never read the classic, I am ashamed to admit, but the trailer makes me want to order up some seafood!
Jessica: Looks good though I’ll admit I HATED “Moby Dick” when I had to read it in High School. Hopefully the movie is better – it certainly looks mighty exciting.
Jim: Looks epic and exciting, Ron Howard seldom disappoints.
Ken: I was really hoping this was going to be terrible so that I could make the “thar’ she blows” joke again, but that actually did look pretty good. Ron Howard may be on to something here, trading the book’s dense symbolism for CGI sea monsters.

American Hero (Screen Media) – Action/Comedy/Sci-Fi
Not Rated
Tag Line: From zero to superhero
Starring:  Stephen Dorff, Eddie Griffin
Plot: Melvin, a reluctant Superhero, lives only for crime, women and drugs – until he realizes that the only way he will ever get to see his estranged son is to go straight and fulfill his potential as a crime fighter.
Running Time: 116 minutes

Ken: (Agree with Jim below) I feel like we’ve seen this flick before (don’t forget Hancock). It’s essentially an alternate reality where Magneto is white trash and Prof X is black.
Chris: It’s the Greatest American Hero, the even bigger LOSER edition.
Jessica: Ugh. I really dislike Dorff, I find him tedious at best and this movie looks to highlight everything I find annoying about him.
Jim: This sort of thing has been done before (Hero, Chronicle), but it’s a good premise—looks like it could be fun!

The Big Short (Paramount) – Biography/Drama
Rated R for pervasive language and some sexuality/nudity
Tag Line:  This is a true story.
Starring: Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Margot Robbie, Brad Pitt, Marisa Tomei
Plot: Four outsiders in the world of high-finance who predicted the credit and housing bubble collapse of the mid-2000s decide to take on the big banks for their lack of foresight and greed.
Running Time: 130 minutes

Jim: A great cast, looks interesting. Not a theater pic, but definitely a rental.
Ken: Very solid trailer, stellar cast and Zeppelin on the soundtrack doesn’t hurt none either.
Chris: The most significant economic event of the last decade on screen with an all-star cast.  Count me in.
Jessica: A lot of good people here. I enjoyed Moneyball and The Blind Side and the story is a compelling one.  Not a theater flick for me but at home viewing for sure.

The Lady in the Van (Sony Picture Classics) – Biography/Comedy/Drama
Rated PG – 13 for a brief unsettling image
Tag Line:  A mostly true story.
Starring: Maggie Smith, Alex Jennings, Domenic Cooper
Plot: A man forms an unexpected bond with a transient woman living in her car that’s parked in his driveway.
Running Time: 104 minutes

Jessica: Dame Maggie looks fantastic in this one. I’d watch it at home.
Jim: Looks “cute” enough I suppose, but…..naaaaaaaaah.
Ken: I’m gonna need subtitles here. Yup, nope I’m lost. Can’t understand a word of what’s being said, but it looks charming.
Chris:  “I am not the carer.  I am here, she is over there.  There is no caring.”  Yep.  That about sums it up for me.

The Dark Horse (Broad Green Pictures) – Drama
Rated R for language throughout, and drug use
Tag Line:  Bravery is contagious.
Starring: Cliff Curtis, James Rolleston
Plot: An emotionally charged and inspiring drama about a man who searches for the courage to lead, despite his own adversities – finding purpose and hope in passing on his gift to the children in his community.
Running Time: 124 minutes

Chris:  Not my idea of entertainment.
Jessica: What is it with the chess movies lately? I feel like there have been a couple before this. Anyway, looks interesting but not interesting enough for me to actively see it in a theater or at home honestly.
Jim: I wouldn’t have thought Searching For Bobby Fischer would be worth my time, but it turned out to be a great movie. This looks interesting, but not enough for me to run to see another chess movie.
Ken: An unstable yet brilliant individual tries to help the youth in his community by teaching them love for a game.  Classic.

Don Verdean (Buffalo Film Company) – Comedy
Rated PG-13 for crude and suggestive content, some language and brief violence
Tag Line: Fraud works in mysterious ways.
Starring:  Sam Rockwell, Leslie Bibb, Danny McBride
Plot: A self-professed biblical archaeologist who has fallen on hard times starts to bend the truth in order to continue inspiring the faithful.
Running Time: 90 minutes

Ken: Pretty sure this trailer is one of the signs of the Apocalypse.
Chris:  From the looks of the trailer, this is going to be a cult classic or a very large bag of refuse.
Jessica: Oh this looks ridiculous in the best possible way. Rockwell is a personal favorite and Clements has always tickled my funny bone ever since “Flight Of The Concourds” so I would totally go see this.
Jim: Ok, it was time to retire people getting hit in the midsection for laughs about 30 years ago. A good cast, but the trailer tries too hard to be “wacky.” Pass.

Tickets Purchased:  One for Don Verdean (Jessica), one for Dark Horse (Ken), one for American Hero (Jim), and one for In the Heart of the Sea (Chris)…a four-way tie!

Superhero Don Verdean escapes the stomach of Moby Dick to retrieve Jonah's fabled chess set.....or something.
Superhero Don Verdean escapes the stomach of Moby Dick to retrieve Jonah’s fabled chess set…..or something.