Do You Remember When The Movie, Not The Trailer, Was The Event?

The halcyon days when trailers simply existed to inform viewers about a particularly movie, as opposed to being events in and of themselves, is pretty much a thing of the past.  If I had any doubts, then the email I received from The Hollywood Reporter removed them.

It explains that the trailer for the J.J. Abrams-directed Star Wars: The Force Awakens (I still can’t stand that subtitle) will be shown in 30 theaters from one end of the country to the next.

And I wouldn’t be a bit surprised to hear that there are instances where people attend showings just to see it, and leave as soon as it’s finished.  I am not sure what such a hunger for movie-related information means, though I have a feeling that it’s not a good thing because it reflects a preoccupation that is perhaps better reserved for more tangible, more real things.

Then again, keep in mind this is coming from someone who had has a huge nerdgasm whenever a new Marvel Studios movie (or Guillermo del Toro directs a new feature) turns up, so perhaps I am not the best person to make such points.

‘Dragon Age: Inquisition – The Breach’ Trailer

I’ve played the original Dragon Age, if I recall, for less than a half hour before I lost interest.  That’s more a commentary on me being really fickle more than anything else.

In other words, it doesn’t take much for me to lose interest in something.

For instance, if the control scheme is a bit unusual and takes adjusting to, then–more often than not–I’m done.

Hell, remember Defender?

I enjoyed watching people play it but never bothered myself.  Why?  Too many damn buttons to keep track of; not exactly what I would call intuitive.

That being said, I don’t recall Dragon Age looking anything like the animatic above, which implies that the gameplay may have changed from what I remember.

And while the Breach, where the monsters came from in Pacific Rim is an idea that I don’t think can be copyrighted, though it strikes me as sort of odd that the makers of the game–if the trailer is to believed–essentially took the concept, and just moved it to the sky, as opposed to the bottom of the ocean.

And they even call it the same thing.

‘Ouija’ Or (The Terror Of Diminished Expectations)

I caught Ouija last weekend, and it was okay; by which I mean that it wasn’t the worst movie I’ve seen (which barely qualifies as praise).  It had moments of interest, though thematically as well as visually it played out eerily similar to movies like The Conjuring, Annabelle and Insidious (which were also produced by Blumhouse Pictures, which I hope is just a coincidence).

What happened to the days when horror movies weren’t afraid to take a risk or two?

When a movie might actually do something that might offend someone’s sensibilities, but as a result end up at the very least an interesting exercise, if nothing else.  And the thing is, it’s not about money because movies like Ouija, The Conjuring and Insidious–which I use purely as examples–aren’t particularly expensive, which in the past often meant that filmmakers could do something a bit out of the ordinary because no one was going bankrupt if the movie tanked.

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‘Ouija’ Trailer

Originally the movie Ouija was going to be huge, in terms of budget, before Universal (the studio releasing the horror feature) balked and almost abandoned the project.  The story was tweaked, and it was brought in significantly cheaper, and the rest is history.

It always mystified me why it was originally planned as a big-budget feature (other than the property being owned by Hasbro, the people behind–or should I say culpable–for the Transformers).  The movie revolves around a ouija board, a Hasbro product by the way, which are creepy just sitting on a table, never mind interacting with the damned (pardon the pun) thing.

And while I think that Universal not producing Ouija as an expensive feature was a great idea (which should pay dividends at the box office) abandoning Guillermo del Toro’s version of H.P. Lovecraft’s At The Mountains Of Madness wasn’t.

‘The Book Of Life’ Trailer 1 & 2

Guillermo del Toro, coming off the success of How To Train Your Dragon 2 (it’s earned over $535 million worldwide) has also produced the upcoming The Book of Life.  Judging from the trailer it looks like it could be fun but I have a few caveats:  First, it’s a cartoon that revolves around the Mexican Day of the Dead, yet there’s only one main actor–Diego Luna–who’s Spanish (Zoe Saldana doesn’t count.  She was born in New Jersey and and later, when she was 10, moved to the Dominican Republic with her family).

Looking at the credits on IMDB that’s actually not the case, but I hope they don’t end up window-dressing in a movie that’s about an aspect of their culture.

‘Silent Hills’ Trailer

Typically when horror-maestro Guillermo Del Toro creates something I am one of the first to acknowledge the sheer awesomeness of his work because few directors, in my experience, have such an eye for the small details that make a movie, be it science fiction, horror, or whatever, particularly memorable.

His most recent project, a videogame that expands the universe of Silent Hill, called Silent Hills, I am not sure what to think about.  I should also mention that it didn’t help that the first time that I saw the trailer that someone was playing the game and talking over it as well.

Minus the additional soundtrack, the PT (playable trailer) appears pretty atmospheric, though only mildly creepy, which considering that it comes from Del Toro and Hideo Kojima, considered to be one of the most influential game designers, concerns me a bit.

Though seeing is not the same as playing, though the game may indeed be terrifying, in the tradition of Silent Hill.  Being that I don’t own a Playstation, here are Brian Altano and John Ryan of IGN playing it, and offering a running commentary.

‘Patrick’ Review

Patrick: Evil Awakens

Some Memories, And Coma Patients, Are Best Left Alone

Mark Hartley‘s Patrick, is currently on Netflix, and is surprisingly a engaging little horror film (before it jumps the rails, that is).  I was expecting something silly, on the level of an Asylum feature, it was actually pretty engaging, before the aforementioned rail jumping.

Charles Dance brought a much needed sense of dread and gravitas to things, and he reminded me somewhat of Peter Cushing of Christopher Lee, both of whom possessed the ability to make sub-par material at least interesting.

Unfortunately, no one–other than the writers, or maybe Edward Norton–can do anything to make a silly story less so, or help a movie regain the goodwill its lost (misplaced somewhere around the half-way mark).

Events unfold place almost entirely in a moody villa that houses the Roget Clinic, where Doctor Roget (Dance) experiments on his patients, assisted by his daughter, Matron Cassidy (Rachel Griffiths).

As of late the doctor seems particularly preoccupied by Patrick (Jackson Gallagher), whom was somehow put in a comatose state after murdering his mother and her lover.

Roget is particularly fond of electroshock therapy, as well as a drug that will look eerily familiar to anyone that’s seen Re-Animator.  If he’s able to bring Patrick out of his coma, it will prove that his theories are correct, and enable him to regain the fame and notoriety he once had before a fall from grace (something involving illegal experiments probably similar to those he’s currently performing, I’d guess).

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