Promo Trailer for Fever Dream ‘Drive All Night’ with Yutaka Takeuchi

Drive All Night Trailer

"I need you to do something for me…" An early festival promo trailer has debuted for a mysterious indie thriller titled Drive All Night, marking the feature directorial debut of the Bay Area's Peter Hsieh, most known for his stage plays. The film follows Dave, a reclusive swing-shift taxi driver, whose night takes an unexpected turn after he picks up a mysterious passenger, Cara, a young woman hiding a dark secret. As she makes him drive through the city on a series of bizarre excursions, things get increasingly more surreal the further into the night they go. Very cool. "I wanted to develop a complex and layered narrative that became increasingly more dream-like and surreal as the story developed. My goal is to take the audience down the rabbit hole on a fever dream trip through wonderland and hopefully have them come out the other side both baffled and entertained," says Hsieh. This stars Yutaka Takeuchi, Lexy Hammonds, Sarah Dumont, and Johnny Gilligan. I like the hyper-stylized look of it, even though I have no idea what's going on here. ›››

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Emma Kennedy in Mysterious Drama ‘My True Fairytale’ Official Trailer

My True Fairytale Trailer

"When you're a superhero, sometimes you have to be careful what you wish for…" Gravitas has revealed an official trailer for an indie drama My True Fairytale, marking the feature directorial debut of D. Mitry. The short synopsis sets this up quite well: Angie Goodwin runs away after a horrific car crash to make her dream of becoming a superhero come true. The other synopsis says after the crash, Angie "decides to fulfill her childhood fantasy and embarks on a mysterious journey." Her recovery process is very strange. Starring Emma Kennedy as Angie, Darri Ingolfsson, Corin Nemec, Taylor Cole, Alyshia Ochse, Arnold Chun, Hector Hugo, Morgan Lindholm, BJ Mitchell, Juliana Destefano, and Mark Daugherty. This looks quite odd, not exactly as the description explains, but it might still be a worthwhile story to tell. ›››

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Official Trailer for ‘Free Byrd’ Retirement Road Trip Buddy Comedy

Free Byrd Trailer

"We can't afford any mishaps." Prankster Ent. has released the official trailer for the indie comedy titled Free Byrd, an amusing road trip adventure from filmmaker Tony Vidal. Arriving on VOD this April. Jay Butler is a lovable underachiever who works as a van driver at an assisted living community. Harry Byrd is being kicked out for general irascibility. Jay is assigned to drive Harry to a new home. Along the way, they have a variety of misadventures, including being picked up by a troupe of burlesque dancers and performing an impromptu comedy act. An entertaining & enlightening journey where the older Harry gives middle-aged Jay perspective on life. With Raymond J. Barry, Randy Nazarian, Shondrella Avery, Bob Turton, Jeanne Young, Toktam Aboozary, Teruko Nakajima, & Bettina Devin. Looks like some kooky fun. ›››

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Watch: A Cinema Video Essay on Loneliness in ‘Saint Maud’ & More

Loneliness Video Essay

"The loner as a character acts our gateway into a complicated, unfeeling world." If you haven't seen it yet, Ross Glass' gem Saint Maud is one of the best horror debuts in years and pretty much every last critic has been raving about it. It's finally available to watch via Epix for streaming in the US. Studiocanal in the UK has posted a video essay on their YouTube featuring words and narration by film critic Anna Bogutskaya, talking about the theme of loneliness. Specifically how Saint Maud fits within loneliness cinema, and also how it connects with other lonely films, including You Were Never Really Here + A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night. It's a compelling rumination on loneliness and it's nice to hear her discussion with all the footage. ›››

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Coming 2 America Review

Coming 2 America is now available exclusively on Amazon Prime. [poilib element="accentDivider"] Back in the summer of 1989, CBS aired a one-and-done TV pilot for a proposed Coming to America TV series, following on from the then-recent feature and starring Tommy Davidson as Tariq, younger brother of the movie’s Prince Akeem, with Paul Bates reprising his role as manservant Oha. I only bring the TV show up because its mere existence assures that Coming 2 America is not the worst follow-up to the original film. That’s right, 33 years later, Eddie Murphy is back in his royal finery for a belated sequel whose title is the most original thing about it. And while it’s nice to see Murphy give his Zamundan accent another whirl alongside returning co-stars Arsenio Hall, Shari Headley, and James Earl Jones, the resultant effort is painless enough but feels less like an essential add-on to a fairly beloved original than a by-the-numbers byproduct of Hollywood’s insatiable appetite for pumping out pre-existing brands in slightly new configurations. Making its debut this week on Amazon Prime, Coming 2 America picks up thirty years after Prince Akeem tied the knot with his American love, Lisa. Now the proud father of three girls, Akeem is getting ready to ascend to the throne himself. However, when Akeem learns he fathered a child during his visit to Queens that one time (before he met Lisa, mind you), the traditional Zamundan order of kingly succession is potentially thrown into disarray. [widget path="global/article/imagegallery" parameters="albumSlug=2021-movies-preview&captions=true"] And with an impending invasion from neighboring Nextdoria (led by Wesley Snipes’ General Izzi) on his mind, Akeem once more hops a plane to the States alongside trusted aide Semmi (Hall) to bring his long lost son Lavelle (Jermaine Fowler) and Lavelle’s mom (and Akeem’s one-time one night stand) Mary, played by Leslie Jones, back to Zamunda to educate them in the royal ways. What follows is the usual fish-out-of-water antics, albeit in reverse, with Lavelle struggling to adapt to Zamundan life while finding himself maneuvered into the same kind of arranged marriage his pop tried to avoid 30 years ago. To the film’s credit, there are some fun bits interspersed throughout thanks to the likable Fowler, the dependable Jones, and Tracy Morgan along for the ride as Lavelle’s uncle. But the shame of it is that Murphy re-teaming with his I Am Dolemite director Craig Brewer, working from a script by, among others, Black-ish creator Kenya Barris offered the promise of more. Sadly, Headley’s Lisa is the character who feels most left by the wayside in the various plot machinations, and it’s jarring to see the character who was the entire focus of Akeem’s story the first time shunted off to the side like a glorified supporting character. While there is a very much appreciated effort to reframe some of the first film’s more glaringly sexist tropes from a post-millennium perspective, what Coming 2 America proves more than anything is how treacherous the terrain can be when making comedy sequels. More often than not they sidestep working to create their own laughs in favor of continuing comedic riffs begun in the initial entry. It’s the cinematic equivalent of playing “Freebird” to a full house, and it’s also where the Austin Powers and Meet the Parents sequels fell down. [ignvideo width=610 height=374 url=] Remember McDowell's restaurant? Now they’re open in Zamunda! And look, there’s Akeem’s would-be bride from the first one (Vanessa Bell Calloway), still barking like a dog! And the Queens barbershop trio (played by Murphy, Hall, and Clint Smith) is back too along with lusty Reverend Brown (played by Hall). The whole movie goes like that, with any attempt at a fully-formed story taking a backseat to a roster of familiar faces and places aimed at firing the nostalgia neurons of its audience. This isn’t to say it’s not fun to see, mind you. After all, how could it not be fun having Murphy and Hall back in makeup as the various characters they played in addition to their Zamundan alter egos, or to see John Amos and Louie Anderson back working at McDowall’s? But too often Coming 2 America feels like a checklist of familiar elements deemed necessary to bring back or risk the ire of longtime fans asking, “Hey, whatever happened to…?” (Sadly, we miss out on an encore from Eriq La Salle as Jheri-curled Darryl.) To some extent, this is understandable after thirty-plus years of that first film’s gags taking on iconic status, but the whole thing takes on a “Very Brady Christmas” vibe after a while, with the eager desire to replay familiar beats robbing the sequel of its freshness. Akeem having an American son he never knew about isn’t so much a natural outgrowth of where the original left off than a necessary sop to the sequel gods, to allow a different-but-similar refresh of the premise. It tells you something that the screenwriters felt it necessary to concoct an entire “lost” scene existing between the frames of the original (complete with some impressive Marvel-style de-aging CGI on Murphy and Hall) to make the essential story beat work, and even then it only does so because of the game efforts from both Murphy and Fowler (who I’ve enjoyed since his run on the short-lived CBS sitcom Superior Donuts). Both actors are great together and deserved a better canvas to act against. [ignvideo width=610 height=374 url=]