New Trailers on Headstuff is the place to catch up on all the latest teasers released in the world of Film and TV. Stephen Porzio tells you what’s hot.
Most Anticipated – If Beale Street Could Talk, Dir Barry Jenkins
Oscar-winning director Barry Jenkins celebrated legendary writer James Baldwin’s birthday by posting a teaser for his adaptation of the novelist’s acclaimed book If Beale Street Could Talk. The story centres on a woman (Kiki Layne) in Harlem as she desperately scrambles to prove her fiancé (Stephan James) innocent of a crime while carrying their first child.
The trailer seems to prove Jenkins’ previous effort – surprise Oscar winner Moonlight – was no fluke. The first half highlights the director’s skill at capturing heightened states of emotion through simple looking yet complex close-ups, tilt zooms and slow-mo. From the two and a half minute teaser, one can already tell Layne and James’ character share a deep love. However, the dark turn the couples’ life takes – left so brilliant enigmatic in the trailer – will have viewers tantalised for more.
Also, the use of Baldwin’s voice as narration in the trailer is a gorgeous tribute to the writer.
#2 – Kidding, FX
Jim Carrey reunites with Michel Gondry (the two collaborated on Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind) for this FX comedy-drama which looks absolutely insane.
The comedian stars as Jeff, a children’s TV presenter whose life begins to implode. This trailer – scored awesomely to The Flaming Lips’ ‘Yeah Yeah Yeah Song’ – documents that breakdown. Jeff’s perception of reality begins to unravel, as he seems to mistake his television programme with real life – enabling Gondry to indulge in his penchant for surreal practical effects. This includes the lead character having sex with a puppet.
Also, it’s great to see Carrey back in a serious role, and for the oft under served scene stealer Judy Greer get screen time in a major project like this.
#3 – Lizzie, Dir Craig William Macneill
Sundance favourite, Lizzie, stars Chloe Sevigny as Lizzie Borden, who garnered notoriety as the main suspect in the August 4, 1892 axe murders of her father and stepmother in Fall River, Massachusetts. The film imagines the titular character as a social outcast trapped under her austere, domineering father’s control. When Bridget Sullivan (Stewart), a young Irish immigrant maid desperate for work, comes to live with the family, Lizzie and her form a bond, one which blossoms into a wicked plan with a dark, unsettling end.
For anyone who has seen Channel Zero – the best horror series on TV right now – they’ll know that director Craig William Macneill has an almost Hanekian level of skill evoking creepiness from stillness. This is evident in the trailer below, aided by a great screeching orchestra score by Jeff Russo. Sevigny is always interesting, while K-Stew is coming off a string of flawless performances. All this combined should lead to a gripping slice of historical gothic fiction.
#4 Shazam – Dir David F Sandberg
M. Night Shyamalan arguably made the biggest stir at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con with the trailer for Split/Unbreakable crossover Glass. However, Shazam was the surprisingly great teaser that delighted audiences. Adapted from a lesser known comic about a teenage boy granted the power to turn into an adult superhero (Thor’s Zachary Levi) by a wizard, this looks zany and witty. Lights Out director David F Sandberg seems to be following Wonder Woman’s example of making DC superhero films more lighthearted, tapping into the same brand of comedy that made the recent Jumanji a surprise monster hit.
#5 A Simple Favor – Dir Paul Feig
Bridesmaids and Spy’s Paul Feig is switching gears, moving from comedy to thriller with this odd but intriguing new joint. Anna Kendrick stars as blogger, Stephanie, who becomes friends with the mysterious and enigmatic Emily (Blake Lively). However, when her new compadre disappears, Stephanie must turn detective and uncover the mystery.
A Simple Favor looks like it will be a great vehicle for Lively. The actress in the past has been type cast as the pretty love interest. Yet recent performances in Cafe Society and The Shallows have proven she’s capable of far more than that. The film also appears to harken back to the days of thrashy 80s and 90s female-focused thrillers like Black Widow or The Hand That Rocks the Cradle – always a plus.