Tuesday, December 7, 2010


With less than 3 1/2 weeks until the end of the year, December is looking to be anemic when it comes to quality films at your local theater. The nauseating trailer for Yogi Bear is almost enough to keep me more than 100 feet away from a theatrical release from now until 2012. On top of that there's Ben Stiller and Robert DeNiro trying to milk the one note joke that started with Meet the Parents, The Chronicles of Narnia brings us another boring epic with The Dawn Treader, and Jack Black makes goofy faces all the way to the bank with Gulliver's Travels, squirting that last bit of goodwill he had worked up with Tropic Thunder down the toilet.

Of course there are a few films that look interesting enough - Tron: Legacy certainly seems to be a feast for the eyes, and The Fighter brings together the three egos of David O. Russell, Christian Bale, and Mark Wahlberg, which should make for some uncomfortable behind-the-scenes YouTube videos.

As much as I'm looking forward to those two films, their trailers just haven't excited me as much as the next two have. You've most likely been exposed to at least one of these movie previews, as they're both more than a few months old, but I think they're not only both well worth watching over again, but the movies themselves will live up to the promise of their trailers.

The first trailer is for the upcoming movie from Joel and Ethan Coen: True Grit. Not only do I think the Coen brothers are the best and most important American filmmakers living today, but they also happen to be my favorite directors as well. Their films define the word unique, even when they're adaptations of pre-existing material (No Country For Old Men). True Grit is their second adaptation in four films, and it looks to be another win for the brothers. This is also their second collaboration with Jeff Bridges, their first birthing one of the great slacker characters of cinema, Jeffrey "The Dude" Lebowski in The Big Lebowski. From interviews, Ethan and Joel have stated that their version of True Grit clings closer to Charles Porti's 1969 novel than the John Wayne starring film of the same name. I haven't had the pleasure of viewing the original film, and I most likely won't bother until after the Coen's version. Watch the trailer below or, for a downloadable version, check it out at Apple Trailers here.

The next film comes from another very important American filmmaker, Darren Aronofsky. Aronofsky blew minds with his late 90's independent film Pi, and then continued to release innovative and critically acclaimed films such as Requiem for a Dream, The Fountain, and The Wrestler. His new film, Black Swan, appears to be a Dario Argento inspired look into the world of ballet, where the pressure of competition can transform the innocent into monsters. The film is in limited release right now (and making some hefty coin at the box office, averaging $80,212 per screen last weekend at 18 screens throughout the US), and most likely I will drive to the closest theater playing the film (Amherst, Massachusetts on December 17) to see it. The Black Swan trailer is below, and head on over to Apple Trailers for a music video and a behind the scenes featurette.

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