You'd think that streaming and digital distribution in general would mean that basically every movie ever made should be available online. But often enough I find that not to be true, and with some notable titles, too.
One movie I've wanted to rewatch for years, Chungking Express, is only available on DVD and Blu-ray, and the Blu-ray discs are out of print and currently selling used on Amazon for over $100. I'd pay to rent or download it, but for whatever reason I can't — not a single service offers it. And while I'll be the first to admit that Chungking Express is not on the same tier as Star Wars, it's still well-known among movie nerds. It seems weird that such a notable film could more-or-less disappear.
And then there are films that haven't received the upkeep they deserve. Take Slacker, a progenitor of indie cinema that kicked off Richard Linklater's career. You can find it available to rent, but only in 480p — it doesn't appear to have ever made the leap to HD, even though there ought to be an available film print to scan (The Library of Congress even has one preserved).
It's weird knowing something exists but being unable to see it, or unable to see it in a fuller format. I doubt that either of these films will disappear for good anytime soon, but it's still strange seeing them unavailable just two decades creation. If this is what happens to (relatively) big names, what's happening to everything else?
Check out 11 trailers from this week below.
Empire continued to be a huge hit through its second season, and now it's about to return for a third. And this time, it has Mariah Carey. Above is an early look at season three, highlighted by a brief appearance from Carey, who'll be playing, of course, a huge hit musician. The new season starts September 21st.
There's a new trailer out for the Blair Witch sequel this week, and while there's a ton of scary-looking stuff in it, I'm going to be honest and just say that this trailer is cut in such a way that it's not even remotely clear what's in front of you for more than two seconds at a time. That may just be a problem with frenetic trailer editing, but it'll be interesting to see if this Blair Witch can pull off anything near as interesting as the original did with shaky found footage. It'll be out September 15th in the UK and September 16th in the US.
Rings imagines an impossible world where there's something on the internet so horrifying that no one should ever see it. Okay, fine — it's not much of a stretch, but it's an interesting enough twist on The Ring's original VHS-format horror. As for where it goes from there? It maybe gets just a bit over the top. It'll be out on October 28th.
Lion is almost definitely going to make you cry. The film is about Saroo Brierley, who at five years old was separated from his parents in India and began trying to track them back down using Google Earth around 15 years later. It's a downright wonderful story on its own, and this first trailer makes it look like Lion does a great job with everything it's given. It'll be out November 25th.
La La Land
Emma Stone. Ryan Gosling. Dancing. Singing. Pretty pictures of LA. What isn't to like about this? Maybe a lot. Maybe nothing. I can't decide. But I'm probably going to see it. It's out December 2nd.
Manchester by the Sea
Manchester by the Sea received some great reviews out of Sundance this year, and it's easy to see why from this first trailer. The film looks incredibly sweet and sad at the same time, with Casey Affleck playing a guy who's just completely lost when it comes to looking after the teenage child of his recently deceased brother. The film comes out November 18th and will head to Amazon later on.
A United Kingdom
It seems like movies often come in twos. And so just as Loving is about to come out with a depiction of the fight over interracial marriage in the US, A United Kingdom is about to come out about the fight over a very high-profile interracial marriage in southern Africa. It's likewise a true story, focused on the leader of Bechuanaland (now Botswana), a black man, who in 1948 married a white woman from London. The film comes out November 25th in the UK.
Audrie & Daisy
Netflix's newest documentary examines the harassment and online bullying that two girls received after going public with stories of sexual assault. The trailer alone is pretty horrifying to watch, and no doubt the documentary itself will go further in exposing the awful ways that rape survivors are often treated. It comes out September 23rd.
Three Days of Terror: The Charlie Hebdo Attacks
Coming up on two years after the Charlie Hebdo attacks, HBO has a documentary that speaks to survivors and responders about the harrowing assault on the satirical French paper and how law enforcement dealt with tracking down the men responsible. It premieres on September 19th.
This looks like it could be pretty wonderful. Miss Hokusai is about the artist Katsushika Ōi, herself the daughter of Hokusai, the artist behind "The Great Wave off Kanagawa." The film follows Ōi as she develops as an artist and tries to step out from under her father's large shadow. It came out in Japan last year and heads to the US on October 14th.
This movie appears to mostly be Halle Berry in an endless car chase trying to stop someone who kidnapped her kid. Also she gets mad at the parents of other lost children for not becoming action stars in order to reunite their family. It is ridiculous. It'll be out December 2nd.