Trailer: Wind River

Taylor Sheridan wrote Sicario for Dennis Villeneuve and Hell or High Water for David Mackenzie. Now, he’s directing one of his own screenplays, a wintry noir called Wind River. An FBI agent (Elizabeth Olsen) teams with the town’s veteran game tracker (Jeremy Renner) to investigate a murder that occurred on a Native American reservation. Canadian veteran actor Graham Green is the local police presence, and Canuck rocker Hugh Dillon (The Headstones, Hard Core Logo) also has a small part. I’m a sucker for procedural crime movies set in the winter (from Fargo, to Insomnia, to Smilla’s Sense of Snow) and this looks superb in that ‘no nonsense’ Sheridan fashion.

Wind River will be getting a semi-wide release from The Weinstein Company on August 4th.

Friday One (Other) Sheet: The Revenant

Had I waited a bit longer today to scour the internet for this column, the poster I would certainly have chosen would be this blue beauty for Alejandro González Iñárritu’s The Revenant. It is one of the best movie posters of the year! So, in the spirit of generosity, I give you the ode to the snowy western, negative space, and the power of fire just out of the frame. God, this is beautiful, as I expect the film to be.

Friday One Sheet: The Hateful 8

The promise of a ‘Western with winter’ in the vein of The Great Silence, Ravenous, Jeremiah Johnson or McCabe & Mrs. Miller is just about as compelling as just about anything in cinema for yours truly. You can guess at the tingle that this particularly painterly poster offers. Kudos to Quentin Tarantino and other keeping the genre alive (and this year promises to be particularly kind for gunslingers and ne’er-do-wells.) The Hateful 8 with its gritty tagline (I can practically hear that line being spoken by Kurt Russell or Bruce Dern) alongside foot prints and blood. And a collection of hardened men against the backdrop of gently falling snow. Bliss.

Trailer: A Most Violent Year

Last week we featured the stellar white poster for the J. D. Chandor (Margin Call, All is Lost) directed New York City crime flick, A Most Violent Year. Now we have the trailer which shows Oscar Isaac getting a bit freaked out at being accused of criminal behaviour in his ‘honest business,’ and Jessica Chastian shedding single tears on more than one occasion. Albert Brooks is in there too. While nothing exceptional exactly jumps out here, I’m pretty happy there are directors like Chandor makeing films that would be right at home in the 1940s or 1970s. That is to say, I will be there will bells on when the film opens on New Years Eve.

Trailer: Force Majeure

ForceMajeure

This dark comedy of gender roles and familial morality from Sweden was a hit in both Cannes and Toronto. The trailer is cut with a wry precision and a sense of showcasing intimate conflict alongside epic scenery. I personally missed the film due to conflicts with other screenings, and because it is coming to Lightbox in Toronto later in the month, and indeed, Magnolia is giving the film a commercial release in select cities. From the TIFF Catalogue:

On a family skiing vacation in the French Alps, Tomas and Ebba are enjoying lunch with their two children when their meal is suddenly interrupted by thunderous booms emanating from the mountain above them. The complacent Tomas initially dismisses the possibility of danger — but when it appears that there may be an avalanche, he grabs his cellphone and bolts, leaving his wife and children to fend for themselves. The remainder of the film monitors the fallout from this fateful incident, as husband and wife hotly debate what actually occurred, and what Tomas’s proper response should have been — a battle that eventually threatens not just Tomas and Ebba’s relationship, but those of the people around them.

Trailer: Bong Joon-Ho’s Snowpiercer

After fellow Koreans Kim Ji-Woon and Park Chan-Wook launched their English language debut films (The Last Stand and Stoker, respectively) the most nuanced of the trio of directorial superstars, Bong Joon-Ho is delivering the largest in scale, the nuclear-winter bound science fiction flick, Snowpiercer. He has brought along the magnificent Song Kang-Ho for the train ride, alongside a sampling of Brit and American character actors including, Tilda Swinton, John Hurt, Ed Harris, Jamie Bell, Octavia Spencer, Steve Park, Ewen Bremner, Allison Pill and Chris Evans. You may not be able to recognize many of them covered in dirt, grease and facial hair.

Bong’s Memories of Murder and The Host are two of my favourite Korean films, thus, I have high expectations for this one, Inception soundtrack and all…

A train-trapped version of Alien3 with Orwellian grace notes and a lots of axes, this hopefully, will be my The Hunger Games! Set in a future where, after a failed experiment to stop global warming, an ice age kills off all life on the planet except for the inhabitants of the Snowpiercer, a train that travels around the globe and is powered by a sacred perpetual-motion engine. A class system evolves on the train but a revolution brews. The film is an adaptation of Jean-Marc Rochette’s French graphic novel series Le Transperceneige.

Yeoh and Bean in Far North Trailer

Far North Movie StillI’m trying to figure out how a great actress like Michelle Yeoh tends to end up in less than stellar films. The Malasyan actress who apparently exploded onto English language films with her appearance in 2000’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon has proven she has the chops but for one reason or another, and especially of late, she’s appeared in a string of less than successful films. Unsurprisingly, Yeoh is always good but the films are, for the most part, awful: Memoirs of a Geisha (beautiful but long and boring), The Children of Huang Shi (great performances from everyone but a poorly put together film), The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (skipped this altogether – maybe it’s good?), Sunshine (the best of the bunch) and… what’s this Far North?

A little digging has uncovered that Asif Kapadia’s film has been kicking around since 2007 (not a good sign) when it first premiered at the Venice Film Festival. The film stars Yeoh and Michelle Krusiec as two women surviving on the Arctic tundra when a dying man (the fabulous Sean Bean; another actor who can’t seem to catch a break though he’s definitely deserving) stumbles onto their camp. The women, who have survived largely by avoiding contact with others, nurse the man back to health but things go sour when the man begins a relationship with Krusiec’s Anja character.

I’ve yet to see any of Kapadia’s other films but the trailer for this one has my full attention. Not only does it look beautifully shot it appears that both Yeoh and Bean have landed in lead roles on a film that’s not complete crap. Considering that it looks good, why has this been buried?

Far North opens in the UK on December 26th but after a bit of poking around, I’ve found out that Image Entertainment has released the film on DVD which is available on Amazon. Looks like I’ll be buying more than just Mamma Mia! (our review) the next time I visit my local house of worship.

Trailer is tucked under the seat!

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