Finding a theme to bind together five trailers for this column every week can be tricky. Sometimes a common element jumps out at me, and other times I have to spend some time searching before I find one. Still other times there's no similarity to be found, which leads us to this week's topic. We're firing a barrel of buckshot (metaphorically speaking) at some new trailers, and we'll talk about the first five we hit. Ready? Lock and load.

Starting Out in the Evening
Frank Langella plays an aging novelist who can't get publishers to even look at his new book, but a young female grad student thinks she can revive people's interest in his work. Langella's character is so old school he actually uses a typewriter, and this looks like a truly great performance. The plot reminds me a bit of Finding Forrester, but only on a superficial level. James reviewed the film at the Toronto International Film Festival, and you can read that right here.

I am Legend
There's a new full-length trailer for this third adaptation of Richard Matheson's classic novel about a lone human in a world overrun with mutated survivors of a global plague. I'm not clear on whether the plague victim's in the movie are actually vampires like they are in the book or some other kind of mutation, but you finally get a peek at them here, as well as some mutant dogs. Beyond the basic premise, this doesn't look like it's going to be a particularly faithful adaptation, but I've always felt a film should judged for what it is and not how similar it is to the source material. This should be good.


The Amateurs
This one was released in the U.K. as The Moguls and that's what IMDB is still calling it. Sounding marginally similar to the upcoming Kevin Smith flick Zack and Miri, the movie stars Jeff Bridges as a middle-aged divorced man who's looking to get rich quick by producing a porn film, and he quickly recruits friends and neighbors to participate. There's an interesting cast that includes Ted Danson, Joe Pantoliano (as a guy known only as Some Idiot), and Lauren Graham. I have a good feeling about this one. Check out the trailer right here:


Step Up 2 the Streets
I'll be the first to admit I'm so far removed from the demographic this film is shooting for it's hard to make a fair assessment, but this looks just awful. From the title that promotes bad spelling habits, to the obnoxious group of teens and their obligatory need to rebel against authority I see no appeal at all. The dance scenes show a great deal of skill, though, and these youthful rebels might attract a young crowd.

Repo the Genetic Opera
I can't imagine this being a mediocre film; either it will be brilliant or it will suck like the vacuum of space itself. I'm told Paris Hilton is in the trailer, though I can't identify her. The stand out performance here is Anthony Head (whose casting was discussed here), he of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and all those romance novel-style Taster's Choice commercials. The director of most of the Saw films presents a science fiction/horror/muscial in which transplant organs can be legally purchased, but if you don't keep up the payments on that kidney they'll come and take it back. Not sure what to expect, but I'm curious enough to give it a look.

And here are the new trailers just added to AOL's Moviefone:
  • Jumper - Hayden Christensen stars as a young man with the ability to teleport. Check out the trailer right here:

  • Sarah Landon and the Paranormal Hour - A 17-year-old girl has encounters with psychics, ghosts and various mysterious phenomena in a small town.
  • Pete Seeger: The Power of Song - Documenatary about the revered American folk singer and activist
  • The Eye - In this remake of a Japanese horror film, Jessica Alba plays a woman who can see the supernatural world after she is given an eye transplant.
  • Beach Party at the Threshold of Hell - Satire about the reconstruction of the U.S. after a nuclear holocaust.
  • Charlie Wilson's War - Tom Hanks stars as Congressman Charlie Wilson who in the late 1970s helped funnel weapons and funding to rebel fighters in Afghanistan