It still strikes me as odd that Valentine’s Day is such a popular weekend for movie releases. On one hand, I get it; the theatre is a poppin’ destination for dates. But then on the other, it’s a pretty strong signal to viewers that the quality is probably not that high. If not a full-on under-the-radar dump for whatever trash bag didn’t do well with test audiences, then it’s probably something that mostly just fills the calendar. (With mainstream releases, anyway.)
It’s especially contrasting when you keep in mind that it usually follows or is generally around movie award season. Going from the high of the immaculate craft of Parasite rightfully winning a tremendous four Oscars to sitting in on the sloppy and weirdly kind of slow Sonic the Hedgehog is the sort of whiplash that you’d get from the real Sonic the Hedgehog actually running directly into your chest. But whatever. Content’s content at a certain point, right?
Anyhoooo let’s get to some trailers!
The French Dispatch – Official Trailer
Wes Anderson trailers are so fascinating. Not just because his idea of what a movie should look and sound and move like is singular in this world but because his trailers are a rarity. They are packed with so much footage and such intrigue with an incredible breadth of the world and yet they never give up the entire movie.
He also tends to work with (the same) incredible actors, so it’s a nice taste of the level of talent to come, especially as they are often in roles that allow a certain kind of oddball campiness. Adrien Brody as a kind of dirtbag art dealer is so choice, as is Frances McDormand as, well, anything.
It hits theatres on July 24, 2020.
Outriders – Official Reveal Trailer
It’s about time People Can Fly got to do another solo project. It’s been a whopping sixteen years since the initial release of Painkiller. Since then, they’ve been doing co-development with Epic Games on a bunch of Gears titles, which is fine. Those games are good. But I’ve been wanting to see them spread their wings a bit for a while now.
Just kind of unfortunate it looks so generic. A Destiny-like co-op shooter with a bunch of seemingly undead creatures? Plus an overbearing metal soundtrack and attitude? The reveal stream wasn’t that inspiring either. I’m trying so hard to remain interested but I’m fading fast.
It’s supposed to release this holiday season on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.
The Green Knight – Official Teaser Trailer
The trend of putting Dev Patel in traditionally white roles is something I can definitely get behind. Aside from being ridiculously handsome, he’s also just really good at this whole acting thing. It’s hard to think of a movie where he at least didn’t do a great job in his role. Maybe The Last Airbender, but it’s super hard to tell if that was him or everything else that made Prince Zuko terrible.
Plus we’re combining him with David Lowery, the only director so far of a modern Disney remake that was any good. (Well, The Jungle Book was also solid, but still.) His particular conceptualization of fantasy that continually skitters closer and closer to horror is consistently fantastic and engrossing. This is a genuinely exciting proposition.
Expect it to hit theatres on May 29, 2020.
Final Fantasy VII Remake – Opening Movie
I promise we’ll stop covering the Final Fantasy VII Remake as soon as we stop having things to say about it. But this new intro to the game is wild. In the original, the scope and mechanized aesthetic of Midgar were played as kind of a reveal. You assume you are seeing stars in the night sky, but that gives way to a mysterious woman with flowers. Kind of intimate.
But then, the camera pulls back and it’s a crowded city street. And then it pulls even further back and holy shit this factory town is impossible. Here in this new opening, however, the scale is given to you immediately. (And it rectifies the popular misconception that all of Midgar is under the disc.) For what purpose? Surely this isn’t a directionless decision. Maybe it’ll be something we’ll glean as the release comes closer.
Look for the first episode of the Final Fantasy VII Remake on April 10, 2020, on PlayStation 4.
Stranger Things 4 – From Russia with love…
Well that seems like a huge fucking spoiler. Granted, it was kind of a given. One of the most popular characters on one of the most popular shows isn’t going to be permanently dead, especially when the body isn’t shown in any way. Every single part of Hopper’s (David Harbour) death pointed to a mislead.
But that doesn’t mean you should just give up the ghost without even trying. That reveal could have been played for some kind of impact. Instead, we got a teaser trailer specifically meant to hype the Internet for a news cycle but is exactly the kind of bullshit the Internet doesn’t particularly care for. This really just kind of sucks.
No release date yet, but maybe this year?
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare – Season Two Trailer
The concept of seasons in online multiplayer games still has me straddling the fence, and I don’t suspect I’ll leave it anytime soon. The idea that developers get a chance to explore a game and respond to players in meaningful ways is terrific. That’s something that was simply impossible back in the day, or at least prohibitively difficult in terms of audience acceptance, infrastructure, and business planning. It’s a good progression built on advancing technologies and social function.
But also there’s no possible way for these to be archived and preserved for future generations, a problem that extant and extinct games already faced when there was only physical media. Well, correction: there is no possible way as long as the iron fist of capitalism prevents developers from freely sharing their code with the world. Sure, there’s something to be said about ephemeral experiences, but also no one in the future will be able to know exactly what season one of Modern Warfare played like outside of Twitch clips.
Anyway, season two has already been released on all platforms.
The Personal History of David Copperfield – Official Trailer
Remember what I said about Dev Patel in traditionally white roles? Fuck yeah. And for all the people trying to paint this in the same genuinely criminal light of a Scarlett Johansson playing any other ethnicity besides white: shut up. We are owed.
Look for it in theaters on May 8, 2020. (Already out in the UK.)
Marvel’s Avengers – Pre-order trailer
I don’t know if I could write anything as perfectly succinct as the current top comment on that video, poor grammar and all: “These could either be amazing or really bad.” There will be no middle ground for this game. Expect to either be blown away or to want to have your brains blown out.
Let’s find out together when it comes out for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and Stadia on September 4, 2020.
Bacurau – Official U.S. Trailer
We don’t get a lot of entries into the Weird Western genre, but here we are. Indiewire actually goes on to call it “wholly unclassifiable,” and after watching this trailer, it makes a lot of sense. I won’t go on because I won’t want to ruin it, but I will say this: watch this damn trailer. It fucking goes.
Look for it in theatres on March 6, 2020.
Deerskin – Official Trailer
I don’t even know what else to say other than of course the guy that made Rubber also made this and I can’t fucking wait.
It hits theatres on March 20, 2020.