Coming Soon Trailers: Pixels, Southpaw, The Stanford Prison Experiment

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Coming Soon Trailers

Not sure what to watch this weekend? Well here at Deluxe Video we sift through all the trailers of the upcoming movies and tell you what to watch and what to avoid. Because we care about your time, loyal reader…and perhaps because nothing is as much fun as righteous anger when a trailer fails to deliver the goods!

Pixels

trailers pixelAliens from outer space come across the pop-culture garbage we beam into space and take our old video game footage as a declaration of war.  With Pac-Man, Donkey Kong and other retro icons destroying the world, scientists turn to video game fanatics as our last line of defense.  Unfortunately, those gamers are Adam Sandler and Kevin James, so we’re pretty reliably screwed.

A big dumb disaster movie with some pretty fun visuals, Pixels really deserves a better cast.  Kevin James as the President of the USA?  Please, we’re not that desperate yet.  Adam Sandler as a video game guru?  Haven’t we gotten past the hurtful stereotype that all video game enthusiasts are losers with personalities akin to a can of bug spray?  Well, actually…that last bit is pretty believable.  Carry on.

When to See It:  Rent it.  The movie looks slick, but I refuse to give Sandler another dollar at the theater.  You know he’s just going to piss it away on another brain-dead rom-com with Drew Barrymore anyway.

Paper Towns

post paperA nerdling gets a major case of wish fulfillment when the girl of his dreams suddenly sneaks into his room and invites him to join her for an adventure filled night of getting even with her jerk-wad ex-boyfriend.  When the morning comes, the boy discovers that the girl has disappeared, leaving only a cryptic trail of clues for him to follow.

This trailer feels really tone deaf.  Another mop-topped, good looking actor trying to fool us into believing that in any universe he could be considered a lovable loser manages to win the object of his desire.  This is pretty obviously pandering to the tween crowd.

When to See It:  Never.  This “love” story feels less like a romance and more like a promotional video for how to spot dependency issues.  Everything about it is hitting my rage buttons, from the damsel in distress motif to the faux-geek look of the cast.  Demand better.

Southpaw

trailer pawJake Gyllenhaal is a boxer at the top his game when tragedy strikes him low.  A rivalry gets out of hand and causes the death of his wife, and emotional and psychological scars cause him to spiral into a self-destructive lifestyle that costs him his boxing career and the custody of his daughter.  Down and out, he’s going to have to train like never before if he wants another shot at being the champ.

Doesn’t look like this boxing movie is going to break any new ground, but perhaps Gyllenhaal can imbue his character with enough heart and humanity to sustain the film until the inevitable climactic fight scene.

When to See It:  Rent it.  Go re-watch Rocky Balboa a few dozen times and see if you’re still in the mood to see a damaged fighter get into the ring one last time to try and out-punch his personal demons.

The Vatican Tapes

trailer vaticanAn accident with a birthday cake causes the devil to inhabit the body of a young woman.  The Ghostbusters Vatican’s secret anti-demon squad are called into action to prevent the devil from completing his nefarious scheme and…you know what, this trailer was so vague and full of exorcism cliches, I can’t even be bothered trying to figure out what the hell is going on in this movie.

There’s some cool visuals to be seen in this trailer, but it really feels weighed down by the metric ton of mumbo jumbo being spewed at the audience and the cookie-cutter plot.  It certainly doesn’t help that the young priest acts like he’s carved out of wood and the possessed woman thinks that being double jointed is the extent of the devil’s powers.

When to See It:  Netflix.  Horror movies this cliched are Netflix’s bread and butter, so justify that seven dollar auto-pay you’ve been shelling out for three years by catching this film where it belongs.

The Stanford Prison Experiment

trailer prisonA psychology experiment where undergraduates are cast in the roles of either prison guards or prisoners goes wildly off the rails when it becomes apparent that both the guards and prisoners are taking their play acting too seriously.  It appears that the professor who is supposed to be watching the watchmen is more intent in the letting the increasingly dangerous game continue than in protecting the safety of his students.

While the young cast seems to be a touch raw, the plot of this film feels electric.  If this dramatization can avoid embellishing the facts of the real life experiment, this film will be a must see.

 When to See It:  In Theaters.  These days the bad actions of law enforcement are daily news, and this misguided experiment gives us a window into the pressures and temptations that lead to such perverse abuses of power.

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