By: Hawk Ripjaw –
This looks like a mess, doesn’t it? This trailer is really… suspiciously cut together in a way that appears to be trying to disguise a secret story element, because there isn’t much to the trailer at all. Young kid finds an alien gun, his step brother just got out of prison, James Franco is the bad guy, and the alien soldiers want their gun back? Is there any reason for the alien stuff to exist? Does it have any bearing on the family dynamic between the step brothers? It’s called Kin, which means family. While it’s fine to have a movie that’s focused on the relationship between two step brothers, the science fiction stuff feels like an afterthought to upgrade the cool factor, rather than an element that exists along and within the relationship aspect. Also, it looks really boring.
What most excites me about Kin is that I won’t have to see the trailer ever again after this weekend.
I’m relatively interested in seeing Operation Finale. I might even call myself “excited.” I like how this movie tackles the “cleanup” phase of WWII. The Nazis are finished and it’s just one of these assholes left to take care of. But it also looks like it does some heavy lifting in terms of characters and appears to structured somewhat like a heist movie. It sounds pretty cool. Plus, it has Ben Kingsley and Oscar Isaac! And Nick Kroll is playing a serious role, which could open up some really interesting avenues for him.
But for some reason, I can’t get too excited. I can’t put my finger on it, but something about the trailer tells me it’ll be good, but not great. The real highlight is undoubtedly going to be when Isaac and Kingsley get put in the same room to act off of each other, and that apparent heist element looks like it could be really interesting, but I do get a strong feeling that those elements won’t be much of the actual movie, and the real bulk will be way too much exposition.
It might be worth it just for the cast.
The first thing I want to get out of the way about the Searching trailer is how it uses a rhythmic sound device of John Cho punching a wall in frustration, and weaves that through the trailer to punctuate it with a concussive series of cuts between dramatic things happening on John Cho’s laptop. A very similar device is used in the trailer for the Coen Brothers movie A Serious Man, so all I can hear when the Searching trailer plays is Michael Stuhlbarg’s face being slammed repeatedly into a chalkboard.
Apart from that, Searching looks pretty interesting. I don’t care for Unfriended, but I definitely dig the idea of the entire movie taking place on a computer screen. A procedural mystery thriller is a much more interesting way to use that format–just in the trailer, elements of character and story are fed through emails, YouTube videos, interviews, and more. It’s not necessary, but it’s definitely novel, and I’m curious to see how well the story actually pulls together with this sort of restriction. If nothing else, however, I’ll be seeing this to support John Cho, who is finally breaking out as a major star performer and is about to be on an awesome roll.