Trailer Park Tuesday: "Black Panther," "The New Mutants," "My Friend Dahmer," and "Castle Rock"
Superheroes, serial killers, and Stephen King!
Before we talk about what’s coming to a theater near you, we really have to talk about what’s coming to a living room near you: a new Stephen King omnibus T.V. series! It’ll be on Hulu sometime in 2018, so we all have plenty of time to emotionally prepare for a whole lot of of scares:
It’s pretty clear that between movie adaptations IT and The Dark Tower, to say nothing of Netflix’s Gerald’s Game and 1922, the “King” of horror is experiencing somewhat of a revival (though one could argue he never really went anywhere in the first place), and this star-studded episodic storyline seems to weave together threads from many of his works of fiction —deep cuts and cultural touchstones alike. Castle Rock is a small Maine town chock full of big secrets and strange occurrences, and we cannot wait to see how the stories set in this sinister place (The Dead Zone, Cujo, and Needful Things, to name just a few) get translated into an episodic format. Will it be more Tales from the Crypt, or more Twin Peaks? One thing we know for sure is that the really, really, really ridiculously good-looking Bill Skarsgard has taken off the Pennywise paint (thank goodness) and stepped into the role of...well, we’re not sure exactly who in the King canon he’ll be playing, but he will be joined by the likes of Jane Levy, Melanie Lynskey, and Sissy Spacek! This show is going to be many things, but it definitely WON’T be appropriate to watch before bed...
...Now, onto our regularly scheduled Trailer Park:
From Sun Ra and Janelle Monae to An Oversimplification of Her Beauty and Blade, we’re huge fans of all things Afrofuturist. So basically, the holidays have come early for us this year, in the form of this first full-length trailer for Marvel’s newest franchise foray! We first met Black Panther/T’Challa (played by the king of the biopics himself, Chadwick Boseman) in Captain America: Civil War, and Black Panther picks up where that movie left off: with T’Challa returning home to his homeland of Wakanda, which due to huge deposits of vibranium and a stalwart practice of isolationism has become one of the most technologically advanced (and mutation-prone) nations in the world. This means we get to see Wakanda in all of its futuristic glory —and the future looks very, very cool.
We get so many epically exciting visuals from this 2-minute teaser that it’s almost too much to process! We’re treated to expansive (and sometimes sunset-drenched) vistas and glittering cityscapes alike, and from filigree crowns to leather harnesses and metallic stacked chokers, to say nothing of the makeup, this trailer serves some serious l-o-o-k-s! And we would be shockingly remiss if we didn’t talk about the soundtrack: In this trailer alone, we’re hearing both Vince Staples and Gil Scott-Heron. It’s safe to say there’s going to be some action sequences set to serious bangers. Black Panther will be tearing into IMAX and 3D in mid-February of next year. Until then, we’ll leave you with this geeky fact: Though Wakandan is based on the South African Xhosa offshoot of the Bantu languages, it was Boseman himself who came up with the Wakandan accent!
The New Mutants
We’ve been watching X-Men movies since 2000. Do you think the message of the franchise is getting through? By that we mean, are any of us less xenophobic, less mistrustful, or more tolerant of the Other (whatever that may mean to you) as a result? Asking for a friend.
Anyway, with this the franchise is genre-jumping into teen horror — think Stephen King meets The Fault in Our Stars, or maybe those deliciously trashy Christopher Pike novels some of us grew up with, or even John Hughes movies from the same era as the original comics — with a cast that includes Game of Thrones’ Maisie Williams (with a great haircut) and Elysium’s Alice Braga (as a millennial-facing Nurse Ratched, apparently). Most of the action seems set in a sinister science facility with shades of reform school or juvenile hall. Ugh, we love asylum horror! This preview promises needle pricks, mind tricks, and plenty of other medical squick. What we don’t see is much in the way of any mutant powers. We meet Magik, Mirage, Sunspot, Wolfsbane, and Cannonball, but it looks like they’re making us wait until next year (or the second trailer) for the really good stuff.
My Friend Dahmer
Uh, have you seen interviews with Jeffrey Dahmer? Ross Lynch, who apparently was some sort of Disney Channel dreamboat until approximately the moment this trailer dropped, is NAILING it as the adolescent version of one of America’s most infamous serial killers. And that’s not all: Anne Heche and Vincent Kartheiser appear in supporting roles as Dahmer’s troubled mother and object of early obsession, respectively. These kinds of “making a monster” stories are always extra-chilling when they’re based on true events, and this guy straight-up ate people, so it’s hard not to keep from shuddering the whole way through this teaser. It’s also hard not to be constantly reminded of the deeply troubled masculinity continuum (which includes monsters like any of the recent headline-earning mass-murderers, the Columbine killers, Elliot Rodger, and Marc Lépine), on which Dahmer is a very particular point. It seems young Jeffrey was hardly the “nice quiet guy” who “kept to himself”, but that to some, his brand of insanity came off as absurdist, anti-establishment rebellion. In other words, he was a bit of an edgelord. Tellingly, he committed his first murder (of 17, that we know of), at the age of 18, as if in some adolescent climax of trauma. In true serial killer fashion, the preview hints at animal cruelty (which may be too much for some of us to bear, to be honest) and erotic fixation, and the requisite, really terrifying shed. We’ll get the grand tour of said shed, no doubt, when My Friend Dahmer opens in theaters starting November 3rd.
Do you love previews? We sure do! Join us next week and every week in the Trailer Park, for hot takes on the coolest Upcoming Releases (popcorn not included).