Sh*t’s getting real in this week’s hottest movie trailers. Real funny. Real scary. Real weird. And just… real.
True stories were a major motif this week. HBO dropped a trailer for The Wizard Of Lies, the tale of Bernie Madoff’s rise and infamous fall. Netflix introduced true crime fans to Casting JonBenet, a documentary-slash-drama about one of America’s most mysterious deaths. Churchill follows its eponymous subject in the lead up to D-Day.
On the funny front, the Baywatch trailer has no shortage of tight abs and humorous hijinks. Fear comes in the form of the American adaptation of Death Note and the tense thrills of Black Butterfly.
And the weird? That comes courtesy of our old friend Morgan Spurlock, whose latest documentary subject is a raunchy amateur wrestler and fruit enthusiast you have to see to believe. And then you still may not believe it.
The Wizard Of Lies
In 2008, stockbroker, investment advisor and financier Bernie Madoff made headlines around the world when he was arrested for perpetrating perhaps the largest financial fraud in U.S. history. Debuting in May, HBO Films’ The Wizard Of Lies examines Madoff’s (Robert De Niro) Ponzi scheme – his deception, lies and cover-up, all as the financier’s wife (Michelle Pfeiffer) and sons are catapulted into a harsh and unrelenting spotlight.
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is a darkly comic drama from Academy Award-winning director Martin McDonagh (In Bruges). After months pass without a culprit in her daughter’s murder case, Mildred Hayes (Frances McDormand) makes a bold move, painting three signs leading into her town with a controversial message directed at William Willoughby (Woody Harrelson), the town’s revered chief of police. When his second-in-command Officer Dixon (Sam Rockwell), an immature mother’s boy with a penchant for violence, gets involved, the battle between Mildred and Ebbing’s law enforcement is exacerbated.
The Handmaid’s Tale
The Handmaid’s Tale is the story of life Gilead, a dystopian society in what was formerly the United States, ruled by a twisted fundamentalism in its militarised ‘return to traditional values’. As one of the few remaining fertile women, Offred (Elisabeth Moss) is a Handmaid in the Commander’s household, one of the caste of women forced into sexual servitude as a last desperate attempt to repopulate the world. Offred must navigate this terrifying world – where anyone could be a spy for Gilead – with one goal: to survive and find the daughter that was taken from her.
A bright student, Light Turner, stumbles across a supernatural notebook that has the power to kill any person whose name he writes in it. Light launches a secret crusade to rid the streets of criminals and become a benevolent human god, but a deadly game of cat and mouse begins when a reclusive detective known only as ‘L’ begins to track down the young man, attempting to end his reign of terror once and for all.
Baywatch follows devoted lifeguard Mitch Buchannon (Dwayne Johnson) as he butts heads with a brash new recruit (Zac Efron). Together, they uncover a local criminal plot that threatens the future of the Bay. The reboot’s cast also includes Alexandra Daddario, Priyanka Chopra, Kelly Rohrbach, and Ilfenesh Hadera. Look out for appearances by the OGs, David Hasselhoff and Pamela Anderson.
Fargo Season 3
Set in 2010, the third season centres on Emmit and his slightly younger brother Ray Stussy (both played by Ewan McGregor). Emmit, the Parking Lot King of Minnesota, sees himself as an American success story, while Ray is more of a cautionary tale. Their sibling rivalry follows a twisted path that begins with petty theft but soon leads to murder, mobsters, and cut-throat competitive bridge. Season three of Fargo also stars Carrie Coon, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and David Thewlis.
Outside a mountain town grappling with a series of abductions and murders, Paul (Antonio Banderas), a reclusive writer, struggles to start what he hopes will be a career-saving screenplay. After a tense encounter at a diner with a drifter named Jack (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), Paul offers Jack a place to stay – and soon the edgy, demanding Jack muscles his way into Paul’s work. As a storm cuts off power to the isolated cabin, the two men begin a jagged game of one-upmanship that will bring at least one tale to an end.
May 23rd, 1944: as tensions mount in the 48-hours preceding D-Day, the now-beleaguered Prime Minister Winston Churchill, played by Brian Cox (The Bourne Supremacy, X-Men 2, Zodiac, War & Peace, Troy), must prepare a final attempt to crush Hitler’s encroaching army. With the entire war effort ultimately hinging on this decision, the stakes have never been higher and Churchill must wrestle his inner-demons to navigate the Allies to victory.
In 1996, Boulder, Colorado was rocked by the mysterious death of six-year-old pageant queen, JonBenet Ramsey. Two decades later, director Kitty Green returns to audition local actors, unpacking how each remembers and relates to the ill-fated Ramsey family. A darkly moving exploration of crime, guilt and personal bias, Casting JonBenet expertly blurs the lines between documentary and drama.
Bodyslam: Revenge Of The Banana
Ronald McFondle, Eddie Van Glam, and a band of like-minded social misfits make up Seattle Semi-Pro (“SSP”), a family of rock-and-roll wrestlers who revel in spoofing the pros. By day they are chefs, hairdressers, and delivery men, but by night these “cabaret combatants” put on raunchy matches while rabid fans chant obscenities and hurl beer cans at their heads. It’s all fun and games until new recruit Paul – a.k.a. “The Banana” – joins up and plays the role of villain far too well. Banished from the group, he swears revenge and uses the law to try to shut SSP down. McFondle and Van Glam must rally their troops and use every trick in the book to save their family. Morgan Spurlock’s latest documentary will surprise and delight you every step of the way.