Coming Soon Trailers: Jigsaw, Suburbicon.
The SAW franchise gets another iteration after seven years, but can it resurrect the Jigsaw killer for a new generation?
While seven years may not be that long a wait in terms of sequels, it is quite a dormant period for the SAW franchise. Starting in 2004, the horror franchise featuring twisted traps got a theatrical release once a year until petering out with 2010’s SAW 3D. It was frankly a miracle the series lasted that long, as the villainous Jigsaw killer had been literally dead for the last few movies. Not Jason Vorhees “dead but totally not dead” but actually in a morgue dead. Now the franchise has to resurrect itself for a new audience that has moved away from the torture porn horror genre in general. Good luck!
On the home front we have four new entries, and as you may have guessed with only one week till Halloween, it is saturated with scary movies. Let’s check them out and see if there is any fun-size winners in this bag of candy corn.
Ten years after the death of the Jigsaw killer, a new victim is found that has all of his hallmarks. A new group of “players” find themselves in a labyrinth of deadly traps as the police desperately try to stop a new round of murders that are somehow connected to the long dead serial killer.
See It?: Rent it.
The SAW franchise has almost always been enjoyable, even when it became formulaic and nonsensical. The ingenuity of the traps and the scenarios are the heart of the drama, not the increasingly weird story about Jigsaw. The only problem here is that this relaunch appears to jettison none of the dead weight that could give this series a new start. Expect more of the same, which is fine if you like the SAW movies already.
A seemingly mild mannered man living in suburbia loses his wife during a home invasion. As the clues come in, we discover that the man may have ties to organized crime. As the bodies stack up, domestic bliss is shattered in the quaint town of Suburbicon and war erupts between a desperate man and his family and a group of ruthless gangsters.
See It?: Yes.
This George Clooney film has all of his standard features: dead-pan dark comedy, smart dialogue, a morbid twist on a fetishized and idealized past, and Matt Damon. It has a tone that you immediately pick up on from his movies where it’s both serious and ironic at the same time. Packed with talent and atmosphere, I’m looking forward to this trip to the suburbs.
Thank You for Your Service.
The story of several US veterans who return home after deployments in Iraq. Suffering from traumas both physical and psychological, they come to rely on each other as they adjust to a life after war.
See It?: Skip It.
There have been several films like this recently, notably American Sniper and Megan Leavey. It remains to be seen if this film can bring new light to an increasingly common drama about the struggle of troops returning home. I haven’t seen Miles Teller in anything decent, yet he still gets cast as in roles that require big chops. I’m dubious that this movie can elevate the genre instead of going for easy sympathy and baked-in drama.
Video on Demand.
A family suffering from the loss of their child moves to a secluded research facility where the husband tries to probe unexplained radio waves for insight into life after death. The frequency has unintended side effects for the wife, who has horrific visions of things that exist outside our reality.
See It?: Yes.
Lush cinematography and nice soundwork got me interested in this film. The back half of the trailer starts to trot out the jumpy edits and distortions that are rife in psychological horror films these days, but I’m hoping that enough of the original style remains intact to warrant a viewing.
An internet vlogger makes her career by corresponding with lonely men and documenting the experience. A man claiming to be a serial killer piques her interest, and she heads out to document his tale. Despite the allure of a blockbuster story, she starts to fear she may be in over her head.
See It?: Nope.
While the original Creep may have been an idie darling, this sequel has a million fingers in the pie attached to all the usual suspects in the horror-mill community. The “making a documentary” trope is thoroughly played out, and there aren’t any scares left to be had in waving a shaky cam around. Some times you can’t go back, Creep.
An immortal vampire named Irina arises in a modern day town, called by the psychological state of a young woman. The vampire leads her new protege down a road of blood and depravity.
See It?: God no.
This film has the dubious quality that Twin Peaks was spoofing nearly thirty years ago. Self indulgent and struggling under a ponderous pace, I wanted to fast forward the trailer after just ten seconds. The acting is terrible and the premise is baroque, and I don’t see how this has managed to become the third film in a series. I guess nothing is as timeless as vampires and pretentious films.
A music star who regularly deals with rabid fans discovers there’s always one more weirdo when her plane crashes and she is “rescued” by a super-fan who keeps her prisoner.
See It?: Hell no.
The makers of this movie know that Misery is a thing, right? They must, as they’ve taken nearly the whole plot of that movie and made only cosmetic changes. The acting is abysmal and the dialogue is overbaked, giving no impression that this film can improve upon the much better film it is ripping off.