In this week's movie preview round-up, Brad Pitt battles evil zombies, not-so-evil zombies try to find true love, and a new serial killer Santa movie makes us wish we were zombies. Roll 'em!
Release Date: February 1, 2013
Based on this trailer, "Warm Bodies" comes with a high risk-reward situation. After all, this comedy about human-zombie love (it's the age-old tale of boy becomes zombie, boy meets girl, boy starts feeling sorta human again and inspires the "less dead" zombies to take on the "more dead" zombies) could be an absolute misfire that's as awkwardly shoehorned into theaters as its premise. However, there are some admittedly charming moments in the trailer, and the world is ready for another "Shaun of the Dead," isn't it? Regardless of how "Warm Bodies" plays out, keep your eye on Nicholas Hoult, who was excellent in 2005's little-seen "Wah-Wah" and looks to nimbly handle a complicated role here.
Release Date: Nov. 30
The trailer for "Silent Night" begs that the following point be made: this is not the first movie in which a serial killer dressed as Santa Claus goes around offing folks on Christmas Eve. Bloody Disgusting (http://bloody-disgusting.com/news/18511/just-in-time-for-christmas-11-ki...) even posted a round-up of 11 of these "killer Santa" movies in 2009 (our personal favorites: the classic "Silent Night, Deadly Night" and "Santa's Slay," starring WWE star Goldberg). Even without the knock-off factor, "Silent Night" looks especially putrid and low-budget, with half-naked ladies victimized by an axe and a wood chipper, among other deadly devices. Malcolm McDowell, what are you doing in there? Get out of there, Malcolm McDowell!
JURASSIC PARK 3D
Release Date: April 5, 2013
Okay, sure, it's not technically a trailer for a new movie. But 20 years (!) after the original was released, "Jurassic Park 3D" will stomp into theaters triumphantly, and color us excited. "Jurassic Park" was such a technical achievement for modern cinema that the 3D component won't be nearly as dazzling as the accomplishments of 1993, but seeing that T-Rex mug leap off the screen will be delightfully terrifying nonetheless. Hold on to yer butts!
Release Date: Feb. 8, 2013
Another instance of a trailer from an intriguing film that suffers because of its confounding editing. After a promising set-up that revolves around Rooney Mara taking too much (or is it not enough?) medication, Jude Law as a too-involved therapist and Channing Tatum as the distant husband, the "Side Effects" previews devolves into a lot of over-the-top yelling; in some instance, the phrases "Someone gets punished," "It's all gonna go away," "It's gonna follow you around forever" and "I had no idea this was going on" are presented, back-to-back and without context. With the viewer drowning in a confused stupor, the trailer finally offers the groan-worthy tagline, "In some instances... death may occur." "Side Effects" looks like Steven Soderbergh in panicky "Contagion" mode, and it's got some great actors as leads. Maybe the full-length movie will allow them to speak in complete thoughts, and not just shout six-word declarations.
MUST-SEE TRAILER OF THE WEEK
Release Date: December 2012 in China, TBD in U.S.
Chinese director Kar Wai Wong ("In The Mood For Love," "2046") has returned with "The Grandmasters," a film that does not yet has U.S. distribution, but damn well should if it's half as gorgeous as this international trailer. The story of Ip Man, the martial-arts expert who trained Bruce Lee, "The Grandmasters" is a film about mastery from a man whose filmmaking precision to parallel to none. From slow-motion fists flying at faces to shots of Zhang Ziyi utterly encapsulated by a blizzard, this trailer does not need English words to convey its raw, human beauty. Hopefully "The Grandmasters" will find a home and hit stateside theaters someday, but until then, bask in this preview, and be sure check out any and all of Kar Wai Wong's past opuses.