Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Tuesday’s Top Trailer: Conviction

Welcome to a weekly feature here at Movies with Abe, Tuesday's Top Trailer. One of my favorite parts about going to see movies is the series of trailers that airs beforehand and, more often than not, the trailer is far better than the actual film. Each week, I'll be sharing a trailer I've recently seen. Please chime in with comments on what you think of the trailer and how you think the movie is going to be.

Conviction – Opening October 15, 2010

I came upon this trailer on both The Film Experience and Awards Daily after reading an article that began with “Poor Annette Bening” on GoldDerby. While I’ve only seen Bening’s impressive performance in “Mother and Child,” apparently many think she’ll be nominated for her lighter role in the upcoming dramedy “The Kids Are All Right.” The reason this is relevant to the discussion is that, just like in 1999 and 2004, Hilary Swank appears to have a vehicle that could put her in competition with Bening for the third time. Swank won on both tries, so that doesn’t bode well for the Oscarless Bening, who earned her first nomination in 1990 but didn’t take it home that time either. But speaking about “Conviction,” this new vehicle, it looks like a decently moving lawyer movie, though I do have some reservations. The first is that Swank’s accent seems to be pretty awful. I’m one of the few people who didn’t hate last year’s “Amelia,” though I didn’t love it, so I doubt this could really be too bad. The trailer, with its overdramatic music, doesn’t remind me a bit too much of “Freedom Writers,” the overwhelmingly sappy 2007 teacher movie starring Swank. The trailer gives away an extraordinary amount of the film’s plot and some of the twists, but it still could be pretty interesting. It’s also worth emphasizing that this kind of movie is supposed to be good and often is; it’s only that the bad ones are disappointing imitations of the great legal films that actually do exist. I didn’t like director Tony Goldwyn’s last movie, “The Last Kiss,” the disappointing adaptation of the great Italian film “L’ultimo bacio” (written about yesterday), but I am a fan of his TV work directing (and often starring in) episodes of shows like “Dexter” and “The L Word.” Sam Rockwell is an actor I occasionally like (“Choke”), sometimes don’t mind (“Moon”), and other times really don’t like (“Snow Angels”), and despite the seeming ridiculousness of his facial hair, he should probably be good here. Melissa Leo has turned in excellent performances on “Treme” and in “Frozen River,” and this looks like a great part for her. Rounding out the cast are Minnie Driver and Juliette Lewis, both of who haven’t done much recently and whose return to the big screen should be welcome. I have some faith that this movie won’t be falsely sentimental or overly sappy – do you?

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