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 – Doctor Sleep, Dir Mike Flanagan
Why would anyone make a sequel to The Shining? Well Stephen King, wrote a follow-up novel in 2013 – a tome of a book with some interesting ideas. It centred on an older Danny Torrance who, after forming a telepathic bond with young girl, Abra, must rescue the child from the clutches of villainous cult The True Knot. Led by Rose the Hat, the group feed off the life-force of those with The Shining, calling it ‘steam’.
More so then ever, adaptations of the horror legend’s stories are king – in the past five years we’ve had 11.22.63, Castle Rock, Mr Mercedes and The Mist on TV, as well as 1922, Cell, Gerald’s Game, It, Pet Sematary and The Dark Tower as movies. So it was never going to be long before somebody attempted to make a film out of Doctor Sleep and by proxy a sequel to Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining.
Based on the trailer and the man behind the camera this time around, this looks like no cash-grab, however. I trust writer-director Mike Flanagan (Gerald’s Game, The Haunting of Hill House, Hush) to latch onto the best elements of the source like Danny’s melancholic post-Overlook existence and the desperation of the dying cult, perhaps doing away with the novel’s pop culture references and attempts at humour. From this teaser, he seems like he’s done that. Meanwhile, that transition from the ‘Dream a Little Dream of Me’ cover to the fog-horn like synths of The Shining theme – goosebumps.
2. Ready or Not – Dir Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett
Starring Margot Robbie’s edgier character actress doppelganger Samara Weaving, this delightful looking comedy-horror centres on a woman who marries into a rich family. On the night of the nuptials, she agrees to participate in a mysterious game. She’s told it’s tradition. However, it isn’t long before her husband’s clan (including Adam Brody, Andie McDowell and Henry Czerny) are chasing her around their mansion with shot-guns and cross-bows, in order to perform a ‘ritual’. This looks like You’re Next but even crazier and with a stellar cast.
3. The Good Liar, Dir Bill Condon
Ian McKellen re-teaming with Gods and Monsters and Mr Holmes director Bill Condon on a new project is always welcome. However, when you realise it’s a thriller and the acting legend is playing a classy con-man attempting to seduce an old widow (Helen Mirren!) for her millions, The Good Liar finds itself in that ‘shut-up and take my money’ territory.
4. Charlie’s Angels, Dir Elizabeth Banks
A reboot of the classic 70’s series, this stars Kristen Stewart, Aladdin’s Naomi Scott and newcomer Ella Balinska as crime-fighters for a now international private detective agency. Exact plot details are scarce. However, this trailer implies the film will be part of the sub-genre of movies focusing on K-Stew trying on expensive clothes, joining alongside 2016’s Personal Shopper. Thank God!
5. Queen and Slim, Dir Melina Matsoukas
From the pen of Lena Waithe (Masters of None, The Chi) comes this drama-thriller with a great premise. On their first date Queen (Jodie Turner-Smith, Nightflyers) and Slim (Daniel Kaluuya – Get Out, Widows) are pulled over by a racist cop. After antagonising the black pair, in the ensuing struggle the policeman is left dead. Fearing the authorities won’t believe the killing was in self-defence, the two who’ve just met decide to go on the run together.
This trailer has a real lyrical quality to it, in keeping with the fact that the movie’s director Melina Matsoukas has two Grammy Awards for work on music videos. On top of this, it boasts two bona fide great actors in Kaluuya and Turner-Smith. Arriving in Irish cinemas early 2020, perhaps this could be a surprise Oscar player.
6. Gwen, Dir William McGregor
In 19th century Wales, young girl, Gwen (Eleanor Worthington-Cox), tries desperately to hold her home together. This is as her mother struggles with a mysterious illness, her father is absent and a ruthless mining company tries to seize her parents’ land. In the midst of these battles, a growing darkness begins to manifest itself, causing the local community to turn on Gwen and her family. Thanks to the stark beauty of its period setting, its young protagonist, the dark imagery on display in the trailer and the description of the movie as a ‘folktale’, this looks like The Witch by way of Wales. High praise.
7. The Terror: Infamy, AMC
Speaking of slow-burn horror, the first season of The Terror, which saw Suspiria 2018 scribe David Kajganich adapt Dan Simmons’ novel of the same name, was a monstrously intense and agonising depiction of men slowly descending into a frozen hell. This was courtesy of an Arctic expedition gone wrong.
The fantastic series (which made Headstuff’s 2018 underrated list) was enough of a hit to spawn a follow-up. An entirely new story set during World War II, The Terror: Infamy centers on a series of bizarre deaths that haunt a Japanese-American community, and a young man’s journey to understand and combat the malevolent entity responsible. The fact season two has new showrunners and is a completely original story has me slightly worried. However, this teaser is creepy enough that I’ll be tuning in for the new series despite reservations.
Funnily enough, a first look at Roland Emmerich’s latest blockbuster Midway was released recently – also exploring the relationship between the Japanese and the Americans during WWII. Though as typical with the Godzilla and Independence Day director, there’s way more American patriotism and explosions.
8. Sorry We Missed You, Dir Ken Loach
Ken Loach (I, Daniel Blake, Riff Raff) continues to put his working class characters through the ringer in order to shine a light on modern society’s biggest issues. In Sorry We Missed You, the controversial topic being explored is zero-hour contracts, still very popular in the UK. While admirable in theme, however, Loach’s recent work has become too didactic to want to sit through, lacking the humanism and warmth that made films of his like Raining Stones classic. This seems like more of the same.
9. Point Blank, Dir Joe Lynch
A remake of brilliant 2010 French thriller Point Blank starring Crossbones and Falcon, “How could this be bad?”, I thought to myself. After watching this trailer I’m a little less confident. Anthony Mackie stars as a nurse, forced into helping a criminal (Frank Grillo) escape from his care.
The original movie was fantastic because of how un-Hollywood it was. It’s a stripped back 84-minute thriller that really works to place you in the shoes of an ordinary terrified main character trapped in a situation beyond his control. However, by being adapted for American audiences, Netflix seem to have put back in all the Hollywood bullshit that the original excelled in not having, including jokes about GTA and swearing old ladies.
That said, director Joe Lynch made the excellent and underseen action movie, Mayhem, last year, starring Steven Yeun and the aforementioned Samara Weaving. Maybe this teaser isn’t a fair representation of his latest. We shall see as it drops on Netflix July 12.