This week was over-populated with trailers for action tentpoles. Some, including Knight and Day, Salt and The A-Team, we'd gotten a glimpse of before. Others, such as The Expendables, were first looks. For all the excitement of that all-star attraction since its stunt casting began and continuing with its trailer premiere, I have to say it doesn't look as great as I'd expected. Maybe I was too hopeful that it'd come off as Ocean's 11 meets the Reagan-era blockbuster. Maybe it's because I suddenly remembered what was great about all these action stars in their prime was that they were each individually part of that unbelievable single-hero mythos. Perhaps the union will have some great cultural significance, but for now I'm expecting this to be as lame in reality as was Snakes on a Plane.
So, as per my apparent tradition lately, another French film wins my top spot for best trailer of the week. Check out the list of snappy judgments after the jump.
1. Micmacs - What's this about? I have no idea, but it's obviously a wondrous, cartoony French film from the mind of Jean-Pierre Jeunet, director of Amelie and The City of Lost Children (and Alien: Resurrection, but the trailer smartly avoids that fact). And that means the plot doesn't matter so much as the promise of offbeat spectacle and the rubbery face of Dominique Pinon. And after seeing the trailer for the curious Jeunet-esque Adele Blanc-Sec last week, I'm especially excited to highlight the first domestic trailer for the latest work from the real deal (read our review for more).
2. Exit Through the Gift Shop - The trailer for this acclaimed documentary about graffiti artist Banksy isn't really new, but it has made the rounds a lot this week due to a release date announcement (April 16, 2010). So I'm spotlighting it here. I really love the parodies of logos, blurbs and film fest laurels.
3. American - The Bill Hicks Story (Red Band) - I can't imagine there could ever be a green band trailer for this documentary about the profane comedian. Placement on this list comes not for the cute motion graphics that the film appears to employ, but for the ironic use of a famous Hicks line at the end.
4. Solitary Man - This Steven Soderbergh-produced film seems a bit of a tease now that we have to wait until September for Wall Street 2, but it really sold me on a technique of incremental cast/character reveals. Hey, look Susan Sarandon's in it, oh and there's Jenna Fishcher, and Mary Louise Parker. Now there's Jesse Eisenberg, too? And Danny DeVito? And Olivia Thirlby? Overall I kinda get a Wonder Boys feeling about this movie, though I'm on the fence about writer-directors Brian Koppelman and David Levien, who scripted Soderbergh's The Girlfriend Experience but also made Knockaround Guys.
5. The Expendables - Is it just me, or are there way too many people in this movie with unintelligible speech impediments?
6. Tomorrow, When the War Began - I had no idea there were two Red Dawn remakes in the works, one of them set in Australia. Sweet!
7. LIfe During Wartime - I haven't been all that into Todd Solondz since Happiness, but the replacement cast assembled for this quasi-sequel has me sold. Especially because I never realized how much Ally Sheedy and Shirley Henderson are perfect to play sisters.
8. The A-Team (#2) - This trailer has had be whistling the theme song for the past two days. And I'm not complaining, for some reason. Jessica Biel does somewhat acknowledge the ridiculousness of this movie in the new spot, which makes the TV adaptation look more along the lines of the Charlie's Angels films than the first disappointing trailer. Yeah, I like the Charlie's Angels movies. So what?
9. Cherrybomb (International) - Harry Potter star Rupert Grint looking as far from Ron Weasly as possible with liquor, drugs and threeways. I don't know about this movie, but I can't wait til Grint is in a British gangster film or something similarly grown up, maybe from Mike Leigh. He could be the next Robert Carlyle or David Thewlis, I tell ya.
10. My Own Love Song (French) - Remember how Renee Zellweger and Forest Whitaker won Oscars? Uhhhhhhhh ... At least this functions fine as an ad for the soundtrack, which features new music by Bob Dylan.
Vote on your favorite trailer of the week below. And if your choice isn't an option (Salt, Knight and Day, Step-Up 3D, MacGruber, Puppet Master vs. Demonic Doys, or whatever else you've seen), leave a comment.