A look at the week’s buzziest trailers, including Squeaky-Voiced Lincoln, Scared-Mom Jessica Chastain, and your Trailer Boyfriend of the Week.
Classy Trailer of the Week:
If the stirring orchestral music didn’t tell you, the “A Steven Spielberg Film” title card certainly did: Lincoln is out to be THE prestige film of the fall. All the chatter after the premiere (because, yes, trailers have premieres now, on big Google social platforms and everything) was about Daniel Day Lewis’s voice and how oddly high-pitched it was. And that WAS weird, but I don’t think it was the quality of DDL’s voice that was the problem. It feels weird to see ANY voice come out of Lincoln’s mouth, right? He might be the most iconic person in American history, in terms of how we constantly see his image — on our money, Mount Rushmore, the Lincoln Memorial, fighting Bigfoot on t-shirts. I can’t imagine any voice sounding right coming out of that face (and seriously, the makeup looks GOOD).
Obviously, this one’s going for Oscars, but with a cast this huge, WHO will be the actors singled out? Spielberg hasn’t directed an actor to an Oscar nomination since Christopher Walken in Catch Me If You Can, and hasn’t directed an actor to an Oscar win since NEVER, but Daniel Day Lewis could be the guy to do it (though it would be his THIRD Best Actor trophy). Who else? Sally Field and Tommy Lee Jones get the most trailer attention. Sally hasn’t been nominated since that “You like me!” business when she won 1984′s Best Actress (no, not even for Eye for an Eye), but she’s got the full Inspirational Wife routine on display.
Least Classy Trailer of the Week:
It’s right there at the beginning: Alan Rickman, naked as the day he was born (…okay, imagine Alan Rickman as a child; so weird!), legs spread apart like Sharon Stone with bills to pay … this is not a movie that’s overly concerned with being respectable. Which is great news, because who needs respectable in a farcical comedy about the art world with Colin Firth, Cameron Diaz, and Stanley Tucci, written by the Coen brother. Two problems: 1) The voiceover on the trailer is hideous. 2) Cameron Diaz doing a Southern accent. If you were one of the six people who saw her take on “Virginian” in The Box, you know what I mean.
Gossip-Girl-Related Trailer of the Week:
Greetings From Tim Buckley
Yes, it’s Dan Humphrey as Jeff Buckey, but you know what? Jeff Buckley’s fans are insane, and they would have complained about whomever was chosen to play the late singer, so why not Penn Badgley? He kind of resembles Buckley, and he certainly seems willing to make the most of his big break. Sure, Buckley was a dreamy, sensitive soul and Badgley seems like kind of a cock in interviews and stuff, but that kind of contrast could be interesting. This kind of looks good, right? The mumbly/shambly Brooklyn stuff doesn’t look as fetishized as I expected, and maybe Imogen Poots is more than just a funny name. She’s got a real-girl quality to her that’s pretty appealing.
Nightmare-Fuel Trailer of the Week:
Poor Jessica Chastain not only has to put up with two creepy foster children in this movie, but she has to do it while sporting a really unflattering hairstyle. This trailer plays like a hypothetical sequel to Nell, where Nell had two daughters while she was living by herself in the wild and then she disappeared suddenly/mysteriously, leaving her daughters all alone to be adopted by a beautiful woman with sad hair. Jessica discovers that there are some challenges to raising feral girls: they eat their own hair, they talk to the walls, they stare menacingly at butterflies, and they keep whispering “Mama” like a couple of creeps. Oh, and their birth mother or Nell or whoever is maybe a ghost haunting Jessica’s house. TEEEINAWAY, girl! Get the hell out of there!
Fanfic-Fuel Trailer of the Week:
So, yes, we’re still not done with the movies that want to be the next Twilight franchise, and this one has all the ingredients: newbie actors staring at each other with teenage longing, vague but everpresent supernatural elements, all that Florence + the Machine. What makes this trailer interesting, for me, is the thick Southern Gothic gloss on everything, but ESPECIALLY the parts where Emma Thompson and Emmy Rossum are swanning about in Sunday church hats and with goblets of wine, doing the backstroke through a pair of the more ridiculous accents I’ve had the pleasure of hearing. THIS is the movie Dark Shadows should’ve been.
Your Trailer Boyfriend This Week:
The contenders: Penn Badgley in Greetings from Tim Buckley, who’s soulful and twinky and very authentic; but he’s also hung up on daddy issues for days, from the looks of it. Daniel Day Lewis in Lincoln, who freed the slaves and won the damn Civil War, what more do you want from him??? Alden Ehrenreich in Beautiful Creatures, who is cute, as the movie title suggests, and who will love you even if you’re a witch (or whatever); but he’ll probably turn out to be a werewolf or a leprechaun or something eventually. And finally Nikolaj Coster-Waldau in Mama. He’s handsome. He’s Danish. He’s supportive when you want to adopt two feral daughters. He will be there to help you fend off scary ghost Nell. He plays hot Jamie Lannister in Game of Thrones. What more do you want? Hey, boyfriend.
Joe Reid is a writer in New York. He thinks the trailer for The Hours is the second-greatest artistic achievement in history, behind only the film The Hours. You should follow him on Twitter.