Screen Squinty’s Trailer Reaction #2- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

 

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Release Date: November 18, 2016.

This is a British-American fantasy drama film inspired by the book of the same name, a non-narrative companion book based off of one of Harry Potter’s school books mentioned in the Harry Potter Cannon a by J. K. Rowling, wit this being a spin-off/prequel of the Harry Potter film series and directed by David Yates.

Plot:

Set in America in 1926, Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne), the supposed author of the school book, is a Hogwarts drop-out toting around a mysterious magical briefcase. He arrives at the Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA) for an important meeting, only to have his day go south when various magical creatures, many of them highly dangerous, escape his accessory and cause the American magical government (who are somewhat miffed over this) to start hunting him down, and also straining the relationship between magical and non-magical governments.

What’s Promising:

The most promising is the clear establishment of a more broad use of world building by taking the Harry Potter franchise out of its relativity secular settings in Brittan and part of Europe as well as a different era and culture, with a  fully functioning adult member of the Wizarding community.

A good touch, which is something that adult fans who grew up with the franchise would want to see as fans and relate to in age bracket, a target audience that are given something looked forward to by those who can’t go to see the two-part West End stage play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (features the main characters all grown up).

What’s Worrying:

The character of the lead has come across so far in the promo’s as a possible as one of those absent minded intellectual/bumbling professor trope that has been so run into the ground its causing earthquakes of disinterest.

There hasn’t been any sort of snippet of nuance outside of this possibility so far, even with the mystery factor of the main character being possibly something more then an ordinary wizard floating about.

At this point it will depend on how the character dynamics will shape him in and out of this possible trope, after all the presences of tropes is not so much always the problem if used smartly such as in commentary/parody,smokescreen, or as a starting point of character development; its when they are used statically without any nuance and characters otherwise come off as one dimensional and unmemorable.

Still this is early days and its more speculation as to what the trailers hint at at this point.

Is It Worth Seeing?

Definitely. While the main character is a bit worrying , the overall presentation and possibilities of world building presented in the trailers, not to mention the more adult spin, makes it very much worth it.

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Screen Squinty’s Trailer Reaction#1.

Welcome to Screen Squinty’s Trailer Reaction Series!

Within these installments I will examine a variety of different trailers from mainstream films, television shows, and independently made productions with an example from at least one of each category and  will be posted in installments.

Installment #1: Suicide Squad, Swiss Army Man, and Containment (CW).

trailer1
(From Left to right- Sucide Squad, Swiss Army man, Containment promo images).

 Suicide Squad-Trailer 2.

For those small numbered few who are not aware of this film or what it is about, Suicide Squad is an American DC Franchise Superhero (or in this case anti-hero) film that is written and directed by David Ayer and the third installment in the DC Extended Universe .

Plot:

A group of disreputable, violent, dark, and outright insane super-villains are taken out of their various incarcerated/bad guy holes and forced to be in a team created in secret by some government conspiracy type people to deal with matters to which the more “legitimate” governmental figures doesn’t want to be held accountable for, and to go up against other super-villains.

The second trailer definitively utilized a very visually colorful promotional palate, combining it with a bit more of a slightly light-hearted approach to the film material while still maintaining some of its gritty quality, presented with a nice rendition of “You Don’t Own Me” and Joker laughter that sums up the film’s theme quite well.

What’s Promising:

The cast of characters briefly shown show some promise in their roles within the film. The brief glimpses of The Joker, while a major selling feature in earlier promo’s, never really solidified his role within the film, particularly in relation to his importance with the overall plot, and did present a worrying possibility that he was just going to be in the film for a brief scene, coming across as a grab for spectators. Fortunately, seeing Joker appear within the environment of the cannon suggests that he will have a stronger role as a possible main antagonist, perhaps beyond the role of this movie’s animated counterpart.

The other promising feature is the reassurance that the film may indeed capture both the darker qualities and the fun zaniness that is inherent within Suicide Squad franchise (comic books, animated film, video game), as well as hinting that major players like Batman within the cannon universe will at least be present, giving it a better sense of being part of the greater whole of the DC universe without tactfully (or not so tactfully) ignoring main players from other films within the franchise.

What’s Worrying:

When you go for something that combines darker, grittier elements/themes, with a more humorous edge, there is a strong possibility that the balance between the elements will become skewed and lead to some awkward forced moments for the sake of either the darker moments or the humorous ones. There is a small hint of that in some of the forced jokes of the trailer, but the overall construction does reassure that the possibility will be hopefully small.

Is It Worth Seeing?

Very much so. The possibility for something entertaining that engages you on the serious side and the fun romp side with a great cast of heavy hitters as some favorite colorful characters that hopefully wont be to one dimensional mixed together with some action and The joker as a possible main antagonist…well, its definitely a look-see.

Release Date: August 4, 2016.

Swiss Army Man-Official Trailer HD.

There are not to many films that can claim having Daniel Radcliffe being rode like a jet ski, literally, and yet somehow still have the film come across as something of a serious worth.

Plot:

Hank (Paul Dano) a marooned man on a deserted island is about to commit suicide when he spots the corpse of Manny (Daniel Radcliffe). In his discovery he realizes that said body has the ability to talk, as well as supernatural, and very handy, powers.

What is Promising?

Alrighty, where to begin with this one?

First off the premise presented is just so out-of-there oddball, yet combined with elements more equated with a drama, you can’t help but wonder what the hell your in for, which is something very tantalizing to those who are used to the standard formats found in films.

The hinted at dynamic between the two leads is also promising, both in the manner in which Hank utilizes Manny as an object, and as a person at the same time, which is something that, when utilized and done right, makes for a very strong project.

What is Worrying?

There doesn’t appear to be anything to worrying hinted at in the promo’s, other then the possibility of a fart joke lurking within the film, but who doesn’t enjoy a good fart joke? (*smiles and whistles*).

Is it Worth Seeing?

Goo gracious yes! The unique premise, the always strong acting skills of Radcliffe who seems to shine particularly well in projects similar to this, and the sheer factor of the curiosity of how this will all pan out in the climax certainly makes this worth seeing.

Release Date: June 17, 2016.

The Containment-First Look Trailer.

Any television show that has Claudia Black in it can’t be all bad right?

This is an American miniseries airing on the CW, based on the Belgian TV series Cordon. Staring David Gyasi, Christina Moses, Chris Wood, Kristen Gutoskie, Claudia Black, George Young, Hanna Mangan Lawrence and Trevor St. John.

Plot:

This drama centers on the events surrounding an outbreak of a deadly virus that is highly contagious and kills all who contract it, necessitating the entire city of Atlanta to be quarantined. The miniseries centers on the various people both in and outside the Quarantine zone as they deal with the fallout, particularly noted as dealing with the themes of changes that can happen to a society when it is cut off from the rest of humanity within it’s IMDb page.

What is Promising?

The characters display promise with a wide variety of ages, genders, and race within a highly tense situation combined with a promising looking premise and leads to some tentative hope that this show will hopefully track a little further outside  the usual CW hetronormative teeny-bopper fair that is the channel’s most popular fair.

What is Worrying?

The show has some glaring hints that it is a play off the terrorist anxieties going on at the moment, particularly obvious with the mention of a Syrian patient zero in the trailer. There is something of a bad taste nowadays in the potential vilifying of an entire ethnicity and combining it with the most current political anxieties for the sake of ratings.

The female cast also doesn’t look to be to promising from the trailer, with maybe the possible exception of Claudia Black’s character,  the majority of the female cast are emphasized by either their boyfriends/husbands/male colleagues or presented in distinctly  female cliche’ role of child caregiver (a woman with a bunch of children trapped within the quarantine zone, or the pregnant woman who was given a fair amount of focus).

Is it Worth Seeing?

Maybe…?

The premise of the show is certainly appealing, and a bit of a step away form the superhero.fantasy-ish television shows they have become known for for the past few years and the presence of Claudia Black who is a great actress, does lend it some viewing credit. The use of the entire city of Atlanta instead of just a portion of it presents some interesting possibilities as the quarantine zone.

Unfortunately the possible depictions of women for the most part as characters within the trailer are not likely to appeal to many viewers, and the use of a Syrian patient zero smacks a little ham fistedly at American anxieties surrounding the current climate  with Syria, and not in any way that appears to be used to inform, but feed on that overall terrorist anxiety rife within America. These two elements make it somewhat what questionable as a show and will possibly piss off a fair amount folks.

Still, if you are not bothered by all that, then the premise from a CW show perhaps makes it a time killer at the very least.

Release Date: April 19, 2016.

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