Saturday, 15 December 2012

Trailer Musings 2012: Superman, Captain Kirk and Del Toro's Gundam walk into a bar.

Because what has been widely perceived to be one of the films of the year came out this week, The Hobbit, the Internet has suddenly found itself inundated with trailers that have been stuck on the beginning of the must see film (Of which I will get around to reviewing at some point before I leave) and I've decided to go through a few of them.

First of all, so everyone doesn't run away, here is your precious Man of Steel trailer. Now, because I have the (mis)fortune to live in Britain, I didn't get to view that lovely new trailer in the cinema, my Hobbit screening had the old boring, washing powder-esque advert. But thankfully the Internet has once more stepped in to save the day. Now, as a comic reader, the idea of enduring yet another Superman origin story seems slightly unnecessary/ I appreciate however, that in the public eye, Superman has been off of the big screen for quite a while, and this trailer seems to be the first proof I have seen that an origin story of the world's most famous superhero might actually be a good thing.

It seems like some of the main focuses will not be on him learning to be superman, but about his secret identity, and the reasons behind it. Really this whole thing seems quite similar to the vibe the X-men films and comics have been known to take, with the whole "is the world ready" angle. The audience might have had enough of that from the Patrick Stewart/Ian McKellen double act though.

Notable highlights include the extended take off scene, with the ground shaking and pulsing as he prepares to take off, some nice spaceships, explosions. A couple of
flashes that might just be showing us the true scope of his powers, and then of course we have the "Superman in handcuffs" shot that they've been really pushing. >

Another good point is that Henry Cavil looks pretty damn nice. Bad sides are that terrible, choral music, not because choral music is bad, but because it seems completely unfitting, and perhaps indicative of wider confusion in just what kind of Movie they are trying to make. Which is perhaps my largest concern for this movie as a whole. They seem to be trying to go, half Smallville, half Chris Nolan Dark Knight. Something that could very well blow up in their faces.

Ok, with Superman out the way, let us move onto the next iconic franchise in nerd culture. Star Trek...Or, more correctly. J.J Abrams takes a bat to your favourite series. The atrociously punctuated "Star Trek into Darkness" teaser trailer shows us little. Chris Pine, Zoe Saldana, Zachy Quinto, Karl Urban and Simon Pegg return as the various original characters they have very little in common with. Hmm, yeah, Okay, I'll level with you, I didn't like Star Trek, and no, annoyingly, I don't mean Star Trek the franchise, I mean the 2009 "blockbuster" which had the audacity to call itself Star Trek and wipe out the entire canon proceeding it (which, yes, I am still sore about). Because I really like Star Trek...You know, the 30+ years of stuff that came before Chris Pine's lifeless performance. 

So basically all we can talk about is Benedict Cumberbatch's character, as he is the only thing really new here. Everyone else, Abrams included is here from the last one. So yeah, let us move onto John Harrison/Gary Mitchell/Khan. From what we see he is a guy who talks about doom in slightly cryptic ways, and takes glee in tearing down the perceptions of security that other people have. Now the reason Khan and Mitchell are crossed off up there is because at different points it has been speculated (and so of course, widely believed) by the Internet that those were who Cumberbatch would be playing, one was because Karl Urban said it, one was probably because some guy on a forum said it. 

Now I really like Cumerbatch, and if there is another trailer that focuses on him, there is a good chance I will probably go check this out for better or worse, though if anyone asks, I'm going to say "damage control". I'm pretty much faithful that the man who can expertly pull off Sherlock, can easily translate these talents into playing a clever villain. The only danger here is that he might outshine Pine...but that would be a problem if they cast a stick of butter as the villain. Such is the way of things.

Oh, you were so boring you made your yellow shirt turn black. Bad Chris Pine!

And finally, we have an "Alien Monsters versus Giant Mecha Robots" movie. Hooray, American Cultural Imperialism continues to try and steal everything they didn't create. But wait you say, this was directed by the Guillermo Del Toro, and it stars...Ron Perlman and that suicidal black pilot from Prometheus. So yeah, here is a thing, a 200+ million dollar Gundam/Avatar/Independence Day/War of the World amalgamation is coming out headed by the guy did Hellboy and Pan's Labyrinth...and it looks generic as balls.

 Oh yeah, and GLaDOS talks for the entire trailer

Shut up GLaDOS, I'm trying to listen to the nice man speak.

So yeah, the general principle seems to be that the Alien's don't come from space this time, they come from the water, or rather, they come from an inter-dimensional portal in the water. Thankfully, the trailer seems to imply that Humanity has this covered, some strange pilot guy is even making a direct copy of the speech from Independence Day, while echoing the morals of War of the World. Thankfully neither Tom Cruise nor Will Smith appear to be anywhere near this. So yeah, the robots all seem clunky like in Avatar, the Aliens seem like strange Rhino things, I'm not sure how intelligent they are suppose to be, but everything cuts too dramatically to find out.

Though perhaps I am being too harsh, the robots look serviceable  and not too alike their anime/Super Sentai/Power Rangers cousins. The title is stupid as hell, but that isn't a problem of note. Del Toro has gained my trust that he wouldn't deliberately put out a bad film, but unless this is a kind of homage to the Monster Battler era of yore, I really can't see what is stopping this from becoming a 1998 Godzilla.

Oh god I just remembered they are making another Godzilla movie!

Anyway, on that terrifying note, go see the Hobbit, you may get to see some trailers. You will probably just get a new Django Unchained trailer if you are British, but that is going to get a review elsewhere. Like the Hobbit will very soon, after I've written some stuff I don't plan to put on the Internet...Now there is a concept.


  1. Like the series Star Trek ( especially The Next Generation except WHO on earth cast the actor who plays Ryker?) but never took to whole films of it. Maybe this one will be ok but the cast in your shot look like the staff at Asda being asked 'who wants to work Christmas Eve?'. Would like to see The Hobbit..will you be doing a review?

    1. Have now seen The Hobbit.

    2. I just saw it as well

    3. What did you think? As I stated in the latest article, I clearly enjoyed, though I can relate if people didn't.

    4. I hadn't read the book so wasn't sure what to expect. I ended up riveted to my seat from beginning to end. The actor who played Bilbo was a brilliant choice and because i cared about the characters i enjoyed every minute. Will there be a review?

    5. Yeah, Martin Freeman continues to play the hapless British person so well it hurts. There might be a review, though I used most of my good stuff in the best films summary, very possible though, definitely deserves some attention

    6. I wasnt even aware you'd seen it dear boy, what did you think? didn't enjoy?

    7. Yeah it was alright I guess, but was just way too whimsical and colourful alot of the time. The amount of CGI annoyed me, it didn't look as good as LOTR, almost looked cheap, and aside from that it just seemed like all the annoying whimsical bits of LOTR in one film. Even bits that were really tense and cool in the book like with the cave trolls and Gollums riddles I just thought weren't as good as they could have been and were squandered to make them lighter than they should've been.

      I just didn't enjoy it as much as everyone else seems too, and alot of it made me laugh, which takes me out of the film alot. For some reason, possibly because of all the big CGI speaking trolls, I couldn't suspend my disbelief.

      It's okay, just not as great as people are saying it is. Don't really get it.

      I assume either you only saw 5 films last year or you loved the hell out of it.

    8. You know I'm Tolkien's bitch. When they added all that silimarillion and forgotten tales stuff in there, and just kept being very indulgent in the lore, I was able to forgive alot.

      And the hobbit was more whimsical than LOTR anyway. They also set up that return of Sauron sideplot quite nicely. I can understand why people wouldn't like a song about doing the dishes in their action fantasy film though.

    9. Yeah Jesus what the hell was up with that song. All the LOTR setup stuff was actually done really well and I loved bits of the film, but overall it just felt really inconsistent, like you would have that serious moment and then go straight onto that little brown wizard thing, which I thought was just kind of gay (hey even Tolkein didn't have him in the book for as long as the film did, so he must've hated it too).

      Mostly though I don't think it's whimsical stuff that I hate, I even like that in films. I think it's that I don't like when Peter Jackson is whimsical, there's something about the way he does it that I can't get into. I noticed that in LOTR, which is why I think I didn't like it here.

      Even though I thought this film was okay, I do fear the other two will become even more bloated and have their tone become way too zig zagging. I haven't even read alot of the extended universe stuff. Is there enough there to put in the main story without it being messy.

    10. Well what they seem to be proposing, which I think, if done correctly, could outstrip the books, is taking the stuff that Tolkien hadn't written at the time of writing the Hobbit (interestingly, when he first wrote the Hobbit, he hadn't even conceived the idea of the one ring being important to anyone but Gollum) and then merging all that stuff into the Hobbit, because it was happening at the same time, things like that Necromancer being able to summon the Witch king, and thus almost definitely being Sauron.

      I think if they manage to pull that off then we will have something truly epic, though perhaps it shouldn't have been all called the Hobbit, perhaps "The Hobbit and some Unfinished Tales"...that sounds appropriately old and doddery.

      I will admit Peter Jackson has a strange way of doing whimsical, like he really studied on it, rather than actually trying to be whimsical, but Howard Shore's music really wins me over whenever one of those scenes come along. I'm also slightly concerned for 2 and 3's succinctness, but as George Michael said, we gotta have faith.

    11. But did he not also say "I want to make a pop album - something more upbeat than my stuff was in the '90s."

    12. Damnit, I knew citing George Michael would play directly into your hands.

  2. Before I go? An unexpected journey?

  3. No probably a hobbitual one!

  4. Stop tolkein in hobbit riddles!

  5. Now there'll be an orcward silence

  6. You've been goblin up all the good ones

  7. You probably feel dwarfed by my brilliance!

  8. This could drag-on a bit