Trailer Hitch for March 31, 2003

By Zach Kolkin

Sure, she's shy now but once you get that wool coat off...

5. City of Ghosts

Although I can't say I'm too enticed by the phrase "A Matt Dillon film," City of Ghosts looks like it has the potential to be an interesting movie. On the question of the film's genre, however, I am somewhat confused by the trailer. At first, it seems like a crime thriller, but the final segment (particularly the segment's music), where the cast is introduced, gave the flick a far less suspenseful air. The trailer was quite vague in presenting the film's premise as well, which made it even harder to get a reading on exactly what kind of movie this is. In any case, the film has a good cast, and hopefully there is more to this film than what is seen in this fairly dull preview.

4. Sweet Sixteen

This is the second preview for Sweet Sixteen reviewed here in the Trailer Hitch, and this one has been modified somewhat for the film's release in the United States. Whereas the first ad focused a lot on the transformation the main character undergoes for his sixteenth birthday, this spot highlights his "bad boy" image. Whereas before the film seemed like a coming-of-age story, now it seems almost like a dark comedy about a rebellious boy and all the trouble he gets himself into. Having not seen the film, it is difficult to know which one is a more accurate portrayal of the movie, though I would imagine it is the first trailer. Perhaps the film company believes that this new trailer will appeal more to American audiences, but I would imagine that people would be much more put off upon discovering that this film is not represented here very accurately.

3. Raising Victor Vargas

Raising Victor Vargas is a Sundance film, and like many independent movies, it tries to sell itself by flaunting its critical praise. I was not too impressed by what was shown of the film itself; the story is about a Hispanic teenage boy named Victor who fancies himself as a "ladies' man" and his attempts to win the heart of the prettiest girl in his neighborhood. Almost the entire trailer focuses on the relationship between Victor and the girl he's after, but I didn't really sense much chemistry between the two. Obviously, though, this is not the type of movie that condenses well into a 90-second clip, and consequently it would seem that we will simply have to trust the glowing reviews trumpeted here and hope that this is indeed a good film.

2. Swimming Pool

This French film has a very short, but quite effective trailer. There is no dialogue in the entire clip, but instead focuses on a beautiful young woman entering a swimming pool. We then see an older woman glaring at her from the nearby house's balcony. The music seemed to go quite well with the action onscreen, and suggested the film fits somewhere in the thriller genre. While there is practically no explanation of the film's premise, seeing the tension between these two women is enough to get a pretty good idea. Overall, I think this serves as an excellent teaser for the movie, and leads quite nicely into a full trailer with a better explanation of the movie's story.

1. Open Hearts

I had not heard of this Danish film before watching the trailer, but now that I have seen this preview, I am quite interested in seeing it. The movie tells the story of two couples and how their lives are affected by a devastating car accident. What struck me the most about the ad was how powerful the scenes shown were. Even with such short clips, all subtitled, there was a huge amount of emotion conveyed in the actors' performances. The music used for the trailer also fit quite well. The film's interesting premise alone would seem to be enough to sell many people, but this fantastic trailer should certainly seal the deal. Sadly, this film will probably never get too much exposure, but if it did, I feel fairly certain that it would capture the interest of a lot of people.



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