Looking for something to watch the other week, I took my colleague's suggestion and checked out Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench, the first film from La La Land director Damien Chazelle. It's a scrappy, black-and-white, super-low-budget musical with the same interest in jazz but none of the production value.
I love getting to watch directors' earliest features and seeing just how far they've come. Moonlight director Barry Jenkins also started with a black-and-white, low-budget feature — Medicine for Melancholy — just a year before Chazelle did. Likewise, it's filled with the same kind of silences and simple, powerful moments as his latest, but it's a world apart terms of how well the pieces come together. (Though Roger Ebert was a big fan nonetheless.)
I don't always enjoy these simpler first features, but there's something great just about the fact that they were made. They're so bare-bones, so earnest. And it's interesting to see just how much a director can change over a few years.
Check out nine trailers from this week below.
Marvel's Cloak & Dagger
Marvel's newest TV series isn't headed to Netflix — it's going to Freeform, the channel formerly known as ABC Family. That means this is much more of a YA-series than Marvel's other TV shows, but the execution looks just as good. And Cloak & Dagger's premise — a superhero duo from a privileged and disadvantaged background — sets the series up to tell some meaningful stories. It starts sometime next year.
Kingsman: The Golden Circle
The first Kingsman's over-the-top mix of action and comedy turned it into something of a surprise hit, and now, just two years later, the series is back for more and has added some fantastic new costars. From the look of it, this one is trying to be every bit as ridiculous while blowing the scope out to include some scenic locations to fight in. It comes out September 22nd.
This isn't strictly a trailer — it's more like a supplemental short film meant to connect Prometheus to Alien: Covenant. This is actually the second short that's come out for the new Alien. And while it's necessarily a little heavy-handed given how brief the clip is, the footage looks just as good as anything that you'd expect to be in the movie. The film comes out May 19th.
Look, I'm not an expert on the Cars cinematic universe, but someone has to explain to me how this works: at one point in this trailer, there are tractors that act like cows. That's weird, right? Are all species represented by cars? What about insects? Do other cars eat the tractors? What do the cars use to plow fields? Has Pixar thought this through? Cars 3 comes out June 16th.
It's Silicon Valley, but British. Loaded is a co-production between Channel 4 and AMC that's supposed to debut on both networks later this year. It's very much poking fun at the same kinds of immature behaviors and excess of the young and newly wealthy, but maybe taking it out of Silicon Valley proper will make for a nice change of pace.
47 Meters Down
Do you want another ridiculous shark attack / survival film? 47 Meters Down looks like it'll fulfill that perfectly. The film comes out June 16th.
Once Upon a Time in Venice
Bruce Willis' latest looks like a cross between John Wick and Keanu. Like, seriously, he's some dopey guy who happens to have access to incredible weaponry and is chasing after a drug dealer who stole his pet. The similarities are eerie, but I'm not quite sure it lands as well as its inspirations do — the gratuitous nudity isn't a great sign either. It comes out June 16th.
I know this might be a spoiler, but I have to be straight with you all: this trailer reveals that "love is the exception," so I guess we don't need to go see the movie. I'm a little surprised too, since A24 usually puts together beautiful previews for its upcoming films, but this one takes what could be a tense premise and gets melodramatic fast. It comes out June 2nd.
In which Iggy Pop plays the angelic guardian of a traveling circus troupe in a French art house film. Enjoy.