Trailer Hitch

By Eric Hughes

April 1, 2009

Are we sure this isn't a deleted scene from Harry and the Hendersons?

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Welcome to Trailer Hitch, BOP's look at the latest movie trailers to hit the Internet. This week: Miley Cyrus casts Hannah Montana to the side, Michael Caine plays an old guy, and Where the Wild Things Are absolutely delights.

Hannah Montana the Movie – Opens April 10th

I'm certainly not the target demo for this pic – 20-something male? Uhhh... no – so Disney couldn't care less what I have to say about Hannah Montana the Movie. But taking the project for what it is, I'll say it's pretty standard live-action fare from the Mouse House. And given its impressive list of cameos – Taylor Swift, Rascal Flatts, Bucky Covington and Tyra Banks (featured hilariously in the trailer), among others – I'll admit this one could rank high on the fun factor for those that like this sort of thing.

Grade: C-
Also expected to be released on this date: Observe and Report, Anvil! The Story of Anvil

Is Anybody There? – Opens April 17th

Every now and then I watch a trailer that tragically gives too much away. Is Anybody There? is one of those trailers. After watching it, I feel like I've witnessed all the surprises. I could be very wrong about this, though. Here, Michael Caine plays an old guy who was at one time a magician, and is influenced by a young boy to reignite his passion. So, Is Anybody There? could still have a number of tricks up its sleeve. (So sorry. Couldn't resist).

Either way, I still have a bone to pick. And it's this: I don't care for the voiceover guy. His pipes just don't sound cinematic enough. For some reason, his voice reminded me a lot of the guy who did the voiceover for the fake The Shining trailer conveniently named Shining. (Click here for more details). This degraded my appreciation for the trailer to Is Anybody There? a bit.

Grade: C+
Also expected to be released on this date: State of Play, Crank 2: High Voltage, Julie & Julia, 17 Again, Every Little Step, Sleep Dealer


Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs – Opens July 1st

You know. I've yet to watch a single one of these Ice Ages. Am I missing out on anything? Like its two predecessors, the trailer to Ice: Dawn of the Dinosaurs doesn't toss up much story. In its place are seemingly random, funny moments featuring cute, computer-generated animals. But this time, we've also got some dinosaurs added to the mix. (Hence the title).

From what we get here, the material seems really funny. Really! Even for someone who hasn't a clue who any of these characters are. The only one I'm quasi-familiar with is the saber-toothed squirrel (Scrat), and that's merely because he's become the official face of the franchise by being the feature character is nearly every teaser.

Grade: B+
Also expected to be released on this date: Public Enemies

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs – Opens September 18th

Following Open Season and Surf's Up, Sony Pictures Animation keeps up their CGI game with Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, inspired by the 1978 children's book by author Judi Barrett and illustrator Ron Barrett. The pic doesn't have the best-looking animation I've ever seen. Yet this is just the studio's third 'toon to date, so I'll cut it a little slack.

In the movie, Bill Hader (SNL) plays a scientist who thinks he's solved world hunger by devising a way to convert water to food. He (and the rest of the living world!) encounter some problems when food begins falling from the sky. Other voices include Anna Faris, Bruce Campbell, James Caan, Tracy Morgan, Andy Samberg and (hey!) Mr. T.

The big reveal of hamburgers and other food items falling to the earth is exciting and fun. And seeing an entire restaurant get covered with loads of spaghetti makes me wish that could happen for reals.

Grade: B
Also expected to be released on this date: Armored, Jennifer's Body

Where the Wild Things Are – Opens October 16th

Leave it to Spike Jonze to adapt what I previously considered the un-adaptable. Where the Wild Things Are, originally published in 1963, is the story of a young, thought-to-be-unloved boy named Max who sails away to an island created in his mind inhabited by large ogre beings known as the Wild Things. Crazy things ensue. They crown him as ruler, he befriends wild thing Carol, and so on. The premise makes for a cute kids story or the ultimate stoner trip. (Or, perhaps, both).

Though I believed it'd prove challenging to adapt those Wild Things for the big screen, I'm totally mistaken. For the seven giant creatures, Jonze's team devised huge, nine-foot tall costumes made of foam, with computer-generated faces. It's sounds sooo lame. But people. It works.

The trailer to the movie is absolutely magnificent. I'm in heart with it. Pay raise to the guy (or gal) who decided on Arcade Fire's "Wake Up" as the soundtrack. It's quintessentially perfect.

Grade: A
Also expected to be released on this date: The Stepfather



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