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.
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.
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.