Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Tuesday’s Top Trailer: Annie

Welcome to the inaugural 2014 edition of 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.

Annie – Opening December 19, 2014

I found out about this film and its trailer while I was reading The Film Experience, and read enough of Nathaniel’s “Yes, No, Maybe So” post about the trailer to discern that the public reaction to this one was not good. After I watched the trailer, I don’t think I disagree all that much. There are a number of things to look at when analyzing this trailer and how the film might ultimately turn out. This is a timeless classic, a memorable stage musical that is grounded in its 1930s setting. This film takes that and sets it in the modern day, which isn’t necessarily an issue save for the unfortunate trailer-ending Facebook comment that feels absurdly out of place. Director Will Gluck previously helmed “Friends with Benefits” and “Easy A” – two present-set stories that were much better than they could have been, and he might be just the person to adapt the story to the current day. Then there are the actors. Quvenzhané Wallis broke out with an Oscar nomination at the age of nine for “Beasts of the Southern Wild,” and since had then has had just a small role in “12 Years a Slave.” In a sense, this is exactly what she should be doing with her career, but let’s hope it’s not a case of too much, too fast. Jamie Foxx can certainly understand that, after a banner year with two Oscar nominations and a win in 2004 led to pretty much nothing since then. Hopefully he’ll be dynamic, rather than his entirely unmemorable turn in his last movie musical, “Dreamgirls.” Cameron Diaz is another story altogether. Her last movie was “The Counselor,” which found her doing all kinds of questionable things, and, based on her work in films like “Vanilla Sky,” I do think she is capable of quality acting. I don’t believe that she’s right for this, though, and she best exemplifies why this film feels like an entirely inappropriate modernization of a story that wasn’t ever asking for a remake like this. I’d still see it out of curiosity, but I don’t think it will be anywhere near satisfying.

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