Content is king, so here we are. Making content. Every month we will be bringing you a monthly movie preview, keeping you up to date on the releases to come in the next 30ish days. The year is sure to be jampacked with worthy releases, so staying up to date is of the utmost importance for those of us engrained in watching the silver screen in a day and age where the cinema is packed full of competing titles. We’ll guide you through the biggest releases, as well as sprinkle those smaller, but deserving titles in.
So far, the year has been quite, well, shit at the box office. The big releases haven’t felt big at all, the indie scene has been barren, and those mid-budgeters have left us wanting more. After a year that finally trended upward (and even set records) at the box office, January and February have let 2019 lose that momentum. Thankfully, March brings a slew of hot films, just in time to save us from the long winter and warm up the empty theaters. Let’s roll.
Three days late and a dollar short. Greta was the most noteworthy release last weekend, but not exactly one that begs to be seen immediately, so I think we’ll survive the post-release preview of it.
Greta is the faux-momma, Misery-style thriller starring French legend Isabelle Huppert (last seen in her Oscar-nominated role as the titular Elle) and teen movie queen Chloe Grace Moretz. Moretz stars as a girl who finds a purse on a train, and kindly returns it to the older woman (Huppert) who lost it. They strike up a weird friendship(?), with Huppert preying on Moretz’s longing for a mother figure. Things take a turn as Huppert appears to have some weirder motives, and it devolves into a cat-and-mouse game.
The trailer for Greta leaves a bit to be desired. It seems very by-the-numbers, an easy-to-figure-out thriller that spoils itself entirely in its two minute preview. It doesn’t seem to have much to say, nor does it seem to reinvent the “crazy person longs after an unwilling participant” genre. Maybe it reveals itself to be more than it appears (just like it’s title character! Haaaaaaa), but on its face it seems standard early year thriller fare.
Verdict: Wait until it’s streaming and you can have a few with some friends while it plays in the background.
Other releases: Madea Family Funeral
The biggest franchise in the world finally lets a woman lead! Much to the chagrin of many an online troll, Brie Larson jets into the MCU with a character meant to be the strongest of those we’ve seen onscreen. By all accounts, Captain Marvel should turn out to be a box office and critical hit. It brings a loaded cast, a (not creepily) de-aged Sam Jackson, a personable cat, and serves as the precursor to the biggest movie event since, well, last April. I’m going to serve up a saucy take, though. Here we go…
I don’t think this looks good.
And that’s an actual hot take despite the incel, neckbeard, insecure straight-white-male population trying to tank the online scores of the movie. Their reasoning is that they are just sexist and misogynistic or have an unreasonable undying devotion to the lesser DCEU. My reasoning is based on pure film critique, because I am not a terrible human being.
The trailer left me confused. Brie Larson has a weird childlike voice, that seems like she is disinterested in the film. Larson is obviously one of the best acting talents around, vacillating from emotional dramas to silly comedies and everything in between, knocking it out every time. But she just isn’t conveying that same quality in this trailer. I mean, I’m not going to MCU movies for some true thespian bravado, but still, in comparison it felt off. And that’s not even mentioning Ben Mendelsohn doing the same thing he’s done for the past 18 movies he’s been in and feeling like maybe he isn’t digging the fact he’s stuck in some go-to bad guy in big budget movie quicksand he fell into the moment Hollywood first heard his ability to speak in a menacing voice. The visuals didn’t seem all that great (while the two indie directors brought on for this are exceptional in their previous films, they’re not known for their visual flare) and a story that seems basic, this feels like a revolutionary film for the year…2007. I’m sure this will turn out to be a fine, entertaining flick, but I think in the midst of an absolutely blistering run of top tier Marvel movies, this could be a step down.
I hope I’m 100% wrong, but we’ll find out for sure this Friday.
Verdict: You could wait to stream, but the theater is the best choice. Let’s boost the hell out of this film and make it a box office hit, so female superheroes keep on rolling.
A movie that has gone through numerous casting and director changes, been stuck and unstuck in development hell for years, and finally had its savior come to it in the form of Netflix. Triple Frontier is an action vehicle starring Ben Affleck, Charlie Hunnam, Pedro Pascal, Garrett Hedlund, and Oscar Isaac as former Special Forces operatives who decide they deserve to get theirs and rob a South American cartel. Another movie that has a trailer that makes it look fairly standard, neither conveying the tense, sweat-inducing thrill of an edge-of-your-seat shoot-em-up thriller, nor the mindblowing action pieces we need to wow us in the deluge of standard action fare. But, everyone involved inspires a lot of hope.
There’s that star-studded cast. Then there’s the director, JC Chandor, known for his ability to make the mundane become gripping (Margin Call, All Is Lost, A Most Violent Year), and the writer, Mark Boal, who typically works with Kathryn Bigelow and is an exceptional writer when placed into that warlike setting but maintaining the human drama those characters deserve. It may leave you treading lightly as it is on Netflix, but I think that plays to its favor. It was never going to be a movie that blew everyone away, and if it is a major letdown it will still not be seen as ultimately terrible or irredeemable due to the fact you don’t have to leave your couch.
Verdict: All aboard the STREAM train.
Other releases: Captive State, Five Feet Apart
Everything that I can say about this film has already been said by myself, right here when I called it my most anticipated film of the year.
Verdict: GET YOUR TICKETS NOW.
Please forgive me, but I just have no interest in this big ear havin’ goof. It’s nothing against my guy Dumbo, or the cast (Eva Green, Danny Devito, Colin Farrell, and Michael Keaton babyyyyy), it’s more so I’m extremely over the live action remakes of Disney classics, of which Dumbo can’t even possibly be considered the top tier of those classics. It’s just money grab after money grab, and I have had ENOUGH. You hear me, Bob Iger? ENOUGH.
Anyway, I’m sure this will actually be fine and probably pack a decent emotional punch, while having premiere weirdo Tim Burton as director makes the most sense of any director placement in the last 400 years. If you’re a Dumbo apologist or aren’t sick of these remakes, do your thing. Otherwise, in the wise words of Shannon Sharpe…