Join us every week for a trip into the weird and wonderful world of trailers. Whether it’s the first teaser for the latest instalment in your favourite franchise, an obscure preview for a strange indie darling, whether it’s good, bad, ugly or just plain weird – your favourite pop culture baristas are there to tell you what they think.
This has been a relatively quiet week at A Damn Fine Cup of Culture, but we did have a tribute to the wonderful Toby Jones in Friday’s instalment of Six Damn Fine Degrees. Jones lost the Battle of the Capotes in the mid-Noughties, and his Infamous was pretty much overshadowed by Capote, which came out the year before, but that’s all the more reason to give Jones his due here.
But let’s turn to our contributors and see what trailers they’re serving up for this week!
Sam: As a great fan of 1970s cinema and thrillers in particular (it seems as if New Hollywood had the side effect of making thrillers and horror that much more visceral and at times extreme), I had always missed out on Irvin Kershner’s Eyes of Laura Mars – first written by none other than John Carpenter, months before his Halloween success – starring a fresh-off-her-Oscar-win Faye Dunaway as a fashion photographer who sees murders happen in front of her eyes through the point of view of the killer (definitely the Carpenter touch). The scenery of a dangerous New York City is a bit too gritty, the fashion scene (supported by none other than Helmut Newton’s photographs) is a bit too oversexualised and the twist ending somewhat unconvincing, but Dunaway and her illustrious co-stars (a forceful Tommy Lee Jones, a disturbing Brad Dourif, a flamboyant René Auberjonois and a blink-and-you’ll-miss-him Raul Julia) make for a suspenseful thrill ride that only the ’70s could get away with!
Eric: Here’s an elevator pitch – what if Saul Goodman from Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul played John Wick in a movie riffing on Joker and A History of Violence? And what if this movie was directed by the man who made a feature-length, completely first-person action movie as his directorial debut? If your response was, ‘the elevator must’ve been propelled into orbit from the sheer explosive inanity of such an idea,’ you probably haven’t been in enough elevators in your life. (The Red Band version of the trailer can be found here.)
Matt: I’ve not always been a big fan of BBC’s limited series over the last few years. They’re often well-cast and reasonably well crafted, but more often than not they’re also a bit dull, overwritten, and even at their best they tend to start better than they end. The latter is arguably also the case for The Serpent, which has now slithered its way onto Netflix, but while I think this miniseries would have been better at six parts than at the eight it received, it is an effectively chilling true-crime story about a ’70s sociopath and murderer and the people whose lives he destroyed.