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Tuesday
Mar252014

YNMS³: The Maze Runner, The Box Trolls, Godzilla

It's a triple Yes No Maybe So to catch us up. After the jump the three pronged breakdown on trailers to The Maze Runner, The Box Trolls, and Godzilla. I realize the latter is a month old but I'm suddenly READY for summer movie season. Are you? I'm feeling an urge for movies that go down great with popcorn like I haven't felt in a good long while.  Does this have something to do with devouring a large bag of popcorn and laughing with my bestie at Muppets Most Wanted this weekend? Probably. 

More after the jump...

THE MAZE RUNNER

 

YES - What's this? An old school trailer setting up the premise without revealing too much. I'll take it. It's weird to say that a male lead feels fresh, given that men lead most films but after Twilight, Hunger Games and Divergent it feels fresh in this one particular context. 

NO - But an entire film with only one actress? I am not okay with that. What if she's not good? What will I look at? (Kidding) Also I just casually watched the pilot of this show called "The 100" on the CW and it was so absolutely terrible that I have to rethink every bad grade I've given other things. It was so nakedly desperate to appeal to young audiences that it had the stupidest premise to insure that its leads would all be under 23 or so. This one looks to be doing the same thing and there's only so much Lord of the Flies Lite I can handle. Also this premise seems like it could go very very wrong being so convoluted.

MAYBE SO - The trailer actually looks creepy and scary -- or is that just my claustrophobia? -- two things that dystopian YA franchises are actually pretty bad at portraying in their efforts to be PG and appeal to the family demographic. I love Dylan O'Brien on Teen Wolf though he's starting to wear out his welcome there in the same way that Spike did on Buffy; when supporting characters are big breakout hits the showrunners often make them the center of everything thus spoiling what was so great about the balance to begin with.

I'm a maybe so.

THE BOX TROLLS

YES -This film has had three trailers now, all of them functioning more like teasers, and just whetting your appetite for the studio's amazing animation. Laika gave us Coraline and ParaNorman which suggests that though they have an aesthetic it's flexible and they manage to make their taste for the grotesque cute somehow. The propulsive energy from Buddy Holly's "You're So Square (Baby I Don't Care)" (who is singing the cover here?) is a fine choice for a wordless trailer and the shot of the girl, sliding in the dirt face down and the boy shoving a buffet's worth of cheese in his mouth are both funny bits. The stop motion looks as joyful and intricate as ever. 

NO -I can't say I'm crazy about the boxtrolls themselves at first glance. At least I wonder about looking at them for 90+ whole minutes. It's a lot of look. 

MAYBE SO -Will audiences respond to its Victorian Era hijinx? I'd love so much for animated films to have more variety than just the CG talking animal comedies and princess musicals but for that to happen, the audience has got to be there for things other than those.

I'm a yes on Laika's history alone but I'd probably see this even without that. 

GODZILLA

YES -I'm not sure what possessed me to watch this one because the teaser was enough to pique interest and I didn't want to know too much. I was hoping they wouldn't just show the big monster before we're sitting in the theater - they never leave anything for inside the theater anymore. But I l-o-v-e this trailer. It leaves a lot of mystery intact -- what there can be at least given its been a famous franchise for literally 60 years now. Gareth Edwards appears to have made a really intense actual monster movie. Bryan Cranston's having a complete nervous breakdown in bite-size trailer form and I'm loving how committed that choice is.

NO -But there have been dozens and dozens of Godzilla films and the last Hollywood remake was panned across the board. And can we stop with that score sound effect at the beginning of the trailer. That's in every trailer now. Every single one. Blargh. Make it stop.

MAYBE SO -If they can sustain the tension and terror and awestruck spectacle they've captured in these 2½ minutes for 2½ hours (we assume it'll be that long because Hollywood can't make short blockbusters anymore) this is going to be a collossal and acclaimed hit in May when it opens. 

I'm a yes on the visual evidence thus far and the awesome cast. Cranston, Binoche, Hawkins, are all wonderful actors and if someone can confirm that Godzilla smooshes Aaron Johnson with his ginormous feet I'm a yes twice over. 

You? 

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Reader Comments (15)

Nat: I don't think you have to worry about the actress being bad. That's Kaya Scodelario, noted in the UK for acclaimed edgy youth drama Skins. Also, it's currently set for a September launch. I don't know what that might mean for Oscar prospects, but I'd say that means they're not discounting them.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Big yes to Godzilla and Boxtrolls. I hope like hell Godzilla lives up to these amazing trailers, and I love the Laika house style - anything they do is an automatic yes. I like the teaser for Maze Runner quite a bit, and think Dylan O'Brien is a star in the making, but I'm never more than a maybe so on these YA adaptations. Sometimes (well, once so far) you get a Hunger Games, more often you get a City of Bones or a... whatever the hell the other ones are.

But I'm totally with you on being ready for summer. I'm looking forward to a lot of movies in May and early June. If half of them deliver it'll be a great kick off to the summer.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterRoark

I don't know, Volvagia, I had a HARD time trying to tolerate her in Wuthering Heights...

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterRobert Hamer

YES:

Boxtrolls - Love this kind of animation. Absolutely loved ParaNorman.
Godzilla - So far it looks fantastic. Making a Godzilla movie that's not silly is no easy task but they seem to be pulling it off so far. And I'm sorry but I could stare at Aaron Johnson all day long.

MAYBE SO:

The Maze Runner - Looks fresh enough for a YA adaptation but I'm not super conviced. I haven't seen Divergent yet but judging from the trailers this looks way more interesting to me.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSad man

Yes - The Maze Runner. I trust the teens I know who've read the book and say it's awesome (same group also disliked Divergent). Plus it's got that interesting kid from Love Actually and Nanny McPhee, and the kid from We're the Millers (he was kind of funny), and Patricia Clarkson in a small role.

Yes - The Box Trolls. Loved ParaNorman and Coraline, so looking forward to this one

Maybe - Godzilla. But probably not in theater.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterPam

Robert Hamer: I'd probably associate that as teething troubles with cinema and/or being a terrible fit for period fare. Tossed into a modern or futuristic context? She'll likely fare much better.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

The only thing I can say I really "dislike" is the clear confirmation that the British film industry must just HATE their "street" actresses, considering the only way Scodelario can get appropriate non-period star making work is to do American accent work. (See also: Ellen Page as the lead of the Queen and Country adaptation over the infinitely more appropriate for the age bracket choices of Scodelario or Katie Jarvis.)

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

I'm gonna watch the Godzilla movie, because of Sally Hawkins and Juliette Binoche. ...That's such an odd sentence.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterTheis

Maze Runner--Didn't really like the trailer, but the premise sounds a bit more interesting that other YA films and I also like that not too much is given away. I'm Maybe so-No until I hear more.

BoxTrolls--Loved the trailer and actually think it gives less away than MR. I"m lining up the kiddies to see that one with me. Yes.

Godzilla--disclaimer, I worked on the last remake. I've lived off the stories of how inane that shooting was for years.

I'm not sold on this one yet. I still see Walter White rather than a different character from Cranston, the scoring for the trailer was not impressive to the point of worrisome at the tricks they were using--I mean, if you're going to repeat the atonal, masses writhing in Hell vocals which are beyond tired, why not just play the score to Carmina Burana and be done with it. And I'm tired of images of the Statue of Liberty in ruins. I nearly saw that for real and it turns me off. Destroy Madison Square Garden. No one else has and it would be applauded by the locals. I'm a NO.

Nat, the orchestral sound at the beginning of the trailer is used to clear the mind so you have no interference for what is coming next. I actually like it. It fails in this trailer because they keep repeating it for no good reason. All the scoring makes me think they don't trust their film to be scary enough.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterHenry

Nat, the cover of "You're So Square" in the Boxtrolls trailer is by Cee Lo Green. It's from a Buddy Holly tribute album that came out a couple years ago and the whole album is divine.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMargaret

"Godzilla" - YES

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJaragon

Yes to all three. Three very well put together trailers.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterArkaan

I'm a YES for The Maze Runner. Love all of the young actors in the film.

March 25, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterRyan T.

if 'the maze runner' was directed by sean cody i'd be a lot more interested

and if godzilla's not played by some guy in a suit swatting away model planes, forget it

March 26, 2014 | Unregistered Commenterpar

Just FYI, Maze Runner is not Dystopian, it's Post-Apocalyptic. there's a big difference between both.

Anyways. Yes for Godzilla and Maze Runner, no for The Boxtrolls. The Boxtrolls looks way too out there for my tastes. It does not appeal to me.

March 26, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKevin

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