Coming Soon Trailers
So begins June! The summer season, and June in particular this year, is usually awash with mindless sequels and remakes of films that have been seen a million times. What better film to set the tone than the latest Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film? While this flick looks to be an improvement over the previous entry, the previous entry was one of the dumbest films I’ve ever seen (and I just finished watching both Captain America 1990 and Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze for future Retro Reviews, so I have seen plenty of stupid movies!) On the other hand, The Lonely Island/SNL have a new comedy out, and the VOD market has some intriguing offerings. Maybe this is the summer of staying in?
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows
Now that they’ve saved Manhattan once, the four reptilian ninja brothers long to be apart of the wider world outside of their sewer. They get the chance to return to the surface when the Shredder returns with a pair of mutated thugs, and an inter dimensional warlord attacks the Big Apple.
When to See It: Rent it. This one does seem better than the last one. The material stays closer to the comics/cartoons, it has a wider cast of villains to fight, and they’ve retconned much of the crappier elements of the first film. That being said, it still seems every bit as stupid as the first one. They fight a tank…in a river. Tanks are pretty lousy at floating, so I’m not sure how they pull this off. Raphael gets hit by a 747 and lives. Huh? There’s also the requisite amount of blurry CGI garbage flying around the screen for a Michael Bay production. If you pay premium money for this, you’re going to regret it.
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
Rapper/Singer Conner4Real (Andy Samberg) faces a crisis of confidence after his second album flops and his friends and fans begin to loose interest in him. Can he do enough crazy/dangerous things to get back into the limelight before his 15 minutes of fame expire?
When to See It: Wait for reviews. The Lonely Island has some great material…in limited doses. Andy Samberg is hilarious…in limited doses. Neither have really proven to be able to pull off a longer project, and the trailer kind of feels like a generic SNL comedy about an obnoxious man-baby protagonist. The trailer is funny in spots, and I would like to see TLI succeed, but I’m going to need some reassurances.
Me Before You
A wealthy young man is paralyzed in an accident and becomes withdrawn and cynical. A luckless young woman with no prospects takes a temp job to help look after him, and they both end up becoming invested in the relationship that forms from their daily routines.
When to See It: Theaters if romantic comedy/dramas are at all your thing. Emilia Clarke is charming and vibrant as the young care-giver, and Sam Claflin pulls off a brooding patient who is neither moribund nor wishy-washy. The central premise of living and loving despite a disability looks to be handled deftly and respectfully. All in all, seems to be an engaging love story with a novel angle.
Video On Demand
A group of thrill seekers are given an experimental drug at a night club by the shady owner (Pierce Brosnan.) While the high is euphoric, the drug slowly erodes their inhibitions and they go from pleasure seekers to amoral sociopaths in short order.
See It? Nope. Fairly standard “weekend of hedonism turns deadly” premise that doesn’t add much to the formula except some lavish settings.
Approaching the Unknown
A lone man heads to Mars in order to be the first human on the red planet. His 270 day voyage goes predictably awry, as forces both internal and external test his resolve.
See It? Maybe. The premise seems very much to be a mash-up of The Martian and 2001: A Space Odyssey, with a touch of Gravity thrown in to boot. That could make this a chilling and cerebral space exploration film…or it could make it a shameless copy-cat with a sketchy premise. Elon Musk would have to be having a bad day to send a solo human to Mars, and NASA sure as shit wouldn’t. Suspension of disbelief is needed from the outset, so maybe wait for some reviews.
Satirist/Animator Bill Plympton imagines the 20th century if Adolph Hitler had become an artist instead of a mass murderer. The mustachioed mad-man still makes a world-wide splash when his drawings make him the German Walt Disney.
See It? Yes. Plympton is a mad genius with a devilish eye for social satire, and this is his first big project in a while. The best part? It’s free on his website starting Friday.