The common denominator in this week’s collection of movie trailers focuses on filmmakers expanding the worlds of their respective franchises. Or, in the case of this summer’s big-budgeted religious epic, expanding a particular character’s outlook on life.
‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’
Taking a page from Marvel, Disney is intent on expanding the ‘Star Wars’ universe, promising a new installment every year for the next four years. For longtime fans, this is technically not much of a challenge because that world has continuously grown in a variety of mediums since the first movie hit theaters.
Collectively referred to as the “Anthology Series,” these spinoffs are meant as standalone features taking place around the original trilogy. Things kick off with ‘Rogue One’, which looks very promising. Although it refuses to reveal too many plot details, this teaser is plenty to whet the appetites of devotees. My favorite part is what looks like an awesomely explosive battle against a platoon of AT-ATs. That’s enough to convince me to watch this in the theater!
‘Marvel’s Doctor Strange’
Marvel teases moviegoers with glimpses of one of its lesser-known comic book superheroes. What’ll be interesting is seeing how the filmmakers introduce Stephen Strange to audiences, since he exists more in the world of magic and the supernatural rather than science and technology (such as Iron Man and Spider-Man) or powerful gods and evolutionary freaks (such as Thor and X-Men).
Still, as fans of the comic series already know, the character and his world are ripe with awesome visuals and actions perfect for the big screen. From the very satisfying teaser, this looks like a fantastic feast for the senses while still giving us a serious dramatic origin story. I particularly enjoyed that we don’t see Strange’s costume except for a glimpse of his signature red cape.
This historical epic adventure will mark the sixth time the Lee Wallace novel has been adapted for the screen, with the last one being a 2010 TV miniseries. Coming from Timur Bekmambetov, the director of ‘Wanted’ and ‘Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter’, the trailer promises an action-packed extravaganza full of thrills, violence, possibly gore and… lots and lots of CGI. That, in of itself, is not a bad thing, but the preview reveals that the CG work is not quite the caliber of like-minded epic blockbusters.
Still, the trailer catches my attention enough to think the film might be entertaining. However, it fails to intrigue me enough to purchase a ticket. I might catch it on Blu-ray just to find out how the filmmakers have re-imagined a familiar story into a sports drama with perhaps even a training montage.
The latest trailer for this entry in the newly-expanding DC universe offers a better look at Batman’s involvement in the story. It’s enough to really get fans excited. I like the Harley Quinn we see here a lot more than in previous trailers.
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