One of the wonderful things about podcasts is how, over time, you get to feel like you're friends with the hosts. There have been a few podcasts like that for me, but the one that's been on my mind lately is The Totally Rad Show, an eclectic review series that covered games, TV, and film. One of its three hosts, Dan Trachtenberg, just accomplished his dream of directing a feature film with 10 Cloverfield Lane — and as someone who feels like an old friend of his (but is actually just a random fan), it's been weirdly exciting and emotional to watch it all unfold.
The best part is: 10 Cloverfield Lane, which I finally saw last weekend, is phenomenal. Like, I did not expect to enjoy it this much. It's one of the most tense movies I can remember watching, and it somehow manages to be both restrained and ambitiously bold at the same time. Seriously, go see it. And to Dan: thanks, not just for making this great movie, but for teaching so many of us about how to watch movies, too.
You can catch 11 of this week's best trailers below.
The Lego Batman Movie
The Lego Batman Movie knows exactly how to win over audiences, because it knows exactly what might be bothering the haters. Too many trailers? It's aware, and playing off of it. Too much Batman? Another joke. Lego is a child's toy and I'm way too old to care about this? Seriously, lighten up. This trailer will help. The movie's out early next year.
What has Matt LeBlanc been up to? I guess it doesn't really matter anymore, because now he's taking over on the new Top Gear, and this first trailer makes it look like a surprisingly genius pairing. He's smooth, confident, and all-at-once goofy and out of place. The new season starts May 8th in the UK, and sometime that same month in the US.
Alice Through the Looking Glass
I have no desire to see this film, but I'm pretty sure I could watch trailer after trailer without getting sick of it. The imagery in these things is just so wild and addicting that it's perfect in two-minute increments. More than that? We'll find out in a couple months. It's out on May 27th.
A biopic of the legendary soccer player, Pelé follows his journey from learning to play as a young boy to heading off to the World Cup as a teenager. It looks beautifully shot, with all of the actual footwork by Pelé coming off as impressive as you'd want it to be. It opens in theaters on May 6th and heads on demand the following week.
I didn't follow most of what was happening in this trailer, but I definitely love it anyway. Slack Bay is an eccentric, energetic film about people disappearing while vacationing on the French coast in 1910. If you're into stylized French films (which I'm assuming is a decent amount of people), you should check this out (there's a bit of nudity). Juliette Binoche stars. It's opening in France on May 11th.
No Home Movie
Chantal Akerman's powerful films and documentaries made her a huge presence in the avant-garde and feminist film world. She died last year at 65, and now her final work, a documentary called No Home Movie, is heading into a limited theatrical release starting today. The film is about Akerman's mother, who survived the Holocaust, and Akerman's relationship with her in old age.
River of Grass
This isn't a new trailer, or even a new movie, but I want to show it to you all anyway. River of Grass is the first feature from the consistently phenomenal Kelly Reichardt. It's just been restored and is now entering a small theatrical release — I'm super bummed to have missed it during the one weekend it played in New York City. If it's not playing near you, then watch for it when it heads to home release on April 12th. Or just watch one of her other films; I really love Wendy and Lucy and Night Moves.
So, I really don't like sharing things that are so indulgently for men — this movie is about a screenwriter and an actor, trying to make it in Hollywood, being total slobs and also wooing attractive women — but the animation in Nerdland is so unusual and interesting that I feel compelled to. If nothing else, check this out for the style (but heads up: it opens in an animated strip club). Paul Rudd and Patton Oswalt voice the lead characters. Nerdland premieres at the Tribeca Film Festival next month.
This isn't actually a trailer for a movie — it's a live-action commercial for the video game Doom, which comes out on May 13th. But you should watch it anyway, because it's basically a minute-long short sci-fi film/music video/sick effects reel. Joseph Kosinski, who made the gorgeous Tron: Legacy, directs.
It's midnight as I'm writing this and Lights Out looks creepy as hell okay bye everyone heads up I dunno what happens after 30 seconds into this trailer. Something something it's out July 22nd.
The Conjuring 2
I'm not watching this one either. James Wan returns to direct a sequel to 2013's The Conjuring, which was a solid reminder of just how good he is at scaring audiences. Wan, by the way, is a producer on Lights Out. Basically, watch it if you like scary stuff, don't watch it if you're like me. The film heads to theaters on June 10th.