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Amanda Mae Meyncke

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Amanda Meyncke lives in Los Angeles and writes about movies for a living. She often looks around for someone to congratulate her, but there is no one there.

Trailer Showdown: Ranking the Week’s Best New Trailers (Jeunet Returns!)

Time for what? Let me hear it. TRAILER SHOWDOWN! That’s right, it’s Friday and time for us to rank the trailers released this week from very best to the very worst.

This week we’ve got a veritable smorgasbord of tasty treats, just barely lounging into fall and smaller indie films certainly seem to rule the day, from small town growing up in “The Young and Prodigious Spivet” and “As Cool As I Am” to films with loads of star power like “We’re the Millers” and “Don Jon”. In any case, whether your tastes range from the wild to the mundane, there’s a movie here that you’re sure to love.

Enough with the blathering, on to the rankings! If you feel like we got it right, let us know in the comments below.

1.) ‘The Young and Prodigious Spivet’

Best of the Week: In this stylized and kinda weird movie from director Jean-Pierre Jeunet, a young inventor takes off on his own, leaving his family behind as he travels to Washington D.C. to accept a prize from the Smithsonian Institute. As long-winded and wild as Jeunet’s films can be, there’s something lovable about this premise of striking out on your own and it’ll be nice to see Helena Bonham Carter not in an unrecognizable wild get-up.
Starring: Helena Bonham Carter, Robert Maillet, Niamh Wilson
Release Date: 2013

2.) ‘Deceptive Practice: The Mysteries and Mentors of Ricky Jay’

A documentary look at one of the finest magicians and tricksters operating in the world today, Ricky Jay is the best of the best practitioners of entertaining deception. This film sees Jay at many ages performing tricks of all kinds, as well as features interviews with his collaborators and mentors. A must-see for any fan of magic and any fan of this wonderfully talented man.
Starring: Ricky Jay
Release Date: 2013

3.) ‘As Cool As I Am’

A coming of age story of a responsible teenager who is trying to make a life with her self-centered parents, who had her when they were teens themselves. Babies raisin’ babies, man, but this looks especially touching and has a flair of the unique about it. Claire Danes is perfectly suited to the role of a selfish mom, and the struggle for happiness is at the center of all human existence. And stuff, you know.
Starring: Claire Danes, James Marsden, Thomas Mann
Release Date: June 21, 2013

4.) ‘Don Jon’

Girls! Pad! Gym! Porn! In this directorial debut from Joseph Gordon-Levitt, the writer/director also stars as a sex-obsessed Italian Jersey boy, who is happily stuck in his ways until he meets a voluptuous, gorgeous girl. The film looks chock full of hilariousness, perfectly weird and it’s fantastic to see Gordon-Levitt branching out from acting to other creative pursuits.
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore
Release Date: October 18, 2013

5.) ‘Europa Report’

A thriller that finds a group of astronauts on a mysterious mission to one of Jupiter’s moons. What begins as a simple journey quickly unfolds into a terrifying nightmare. Yep, that’s about it. OH WAIT NO. This space odyssey looks too wonderful to be spoiled, so maybe watch the trailer with one eye shut.
Starring: Sharlto Copley, Michael Nyqvist, Christian Camargo
Release Date: June 27, 2013

6.) ‘Blood Ties’

A sprawling, complicated view of familial ties and broken relationships in the ’70s, Clive Owen and Billy Crudup face off as brothers on opposite sides of the law. This film is riddled with talent, and has all the makings of an emotional powerhouse. Billy Crudup can totally be in all the movies set in the ’70s ’cause he always does it right.
Starring: Zoe Saldana, Mila Kunis, Marion Cotillard, Clive Owen
Release Date: 2013

7.) ‘Maniac’

Elijah Wood playing a serial killer? Yes, please. In this first person POV thriller, he plays the owner of a mannequin shop who kills for sport and pleasure. The premise seems grisly but the execution (pardon my pun) might just be perfection. Wood as a murderer has a kind of perfect symmetry to it as well, and it’ll be fun to see him descend into the darker, creepier side of his personality.
Starring: Elijah Wood, America Olivo, Nora Arnezeder
Release Date: June 21, 2013

8.) ‘Byzantium’

Though we’ve featured this one before, there’s never a bad time for vampires!! A centuries old curse, and two women on the lam caught up in the troubles of a small town find even greater danger when their true nature is revealed. Vampires! Sayyy-oooorsayyy Ronan! This looks beyond, but kind of beyond in a good way. If you’re into the grown up possibilities of vampires, this one’s for you.
Starring: Saoirse Ronan, Gemma Arterton, Caleb Landry Jones
Release Date: June 28, 2013

9.) ‘We’re the Millers’

A comedy where Jennifer Aniston plays a stripper and a bunch of people pretend to be a family to get some marijuana from Mexico to the United States. Implausible, yes? But, if you’ve ever wanted to see Aniston prance about in undies and pretend to strip, now’s your chance. Embarrassing, dumb dialogue, but maybe there’s a few laughs to be found.
Starring: Jennifer Aniston, Emma Roberts, Ed Helms
Release Date: August 9, 2013

10.) ‘Just Like a Woman’

Two down on their luck women leave their homes and troubles in search of a better life through belly dancing. This could be a very moving exposition on the power of female friendship, or it could just be a kind of a waste of time and energy. Sienna Miller is a bit of a chameleon and I actually can’t remember the last movie I saw her in, so good on her.
Starring: Sienna Miller, Golshifteh Farahani, Bahar Soomekh
Release Date: 2013

11.) ‘Metallica Through the Never’

Partial concert film and partial… scenes of demolition and destruction? In any case, it’s apparently Metallica, which is some kind of “heavy” “metal” “band” as you’ve never seen them before, which sort of assumes that you have seen them previously, but I can’t actually think of anyone I know who’s super into Metallica concert films. Nonetheless, I’m sure there are people out there who want, nay, demand a 3-D Metallica experience. This one’s for y’all.
Starring: Dane DeHaan, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich
Release Date: August 9, 2013

12.) ‘Delivery Man’

In this “comedy,” a mixup at a fertility clinic leads to one man fathering over 500 children, who must decide whether or not to come forward when a bunch of them sue him. Vince Vaughn stars, and while we only see a little snippet of this teaser trailer, this already looks weirdly depressing.
Starring: Cobie Smulders, Vince Vaughn, Chris Pratt
Release Date: November 22, 2013

Come back next week for more rankings!


Categories: Columns, Trailer Roundup

Tags: Blood Ties, Don Jon, Europa Report, Maniac, Ricky Jay, The Young and Prodigious Spivet, Trailer showdown

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