Prehistoric Planet (Documentary)
If you’ve ever seen Planet Earth, The Blue Planet, or any other wildlife documentary narrated by David Attenborough’s calming voice, you know exactly what you are getting into. But this time there is a major twist. DINOSAURS! That’s right, you get the chance to follow the adventures of a bunch of different, very cool, Dinosaurs over an epic five part series. Bless CGI and digital animation. I once had a relationship that mainly consisted of the two of us smoking weed and watching wildlife documentaries while in bed. It didn’t last, but boy do I wish this series had been around back then.
Top Gun: Maverick (Action)
Only 36 years after the original Top Gun film, Tom Cruise is back in the role of loose cannon fighter pilot Maverick, and he looks to be in charge of a whole new team of fellow loose cannon fighter pilots. This movie is for two kinds of people: huge fans of the original Top Gun or huge fans of fighter jets. The trailer gives those people everything they need: Tom Cruise riding a motorcycle while smiling, Tom Cruise flying in a jet with a focused stare, Tom Cruise passionately talking up close to someone’s face, Jennifer Connelly’s eyebrows, and Tom Cruise at an airforce funeral palming golden wings into a casket. So there is absolutely no question that some shit is going to go down and jets are going to be involved.
Alex Garland, the director of Ex Machina and Annihilation, and A24 have teamed up to bring us what looks to be a scary, small town UK horror starring academy award nominee Jessie Buckley and Rory Kinnear. When a woman’s husband jumps (or does he fall?) off their balcony in the city, she goes on a solo vacation to the countryside. But from the looks of the trailer the countryside seems to be full of creeps, wretches, priests with bad hair, white faced ghouls screaming into mail slots and scraggly silhouettes that follow her into the night. Men looks terrifying, and since Alex Gharland did such an amazing job creating one of the scariest and most memorable movie monsters in Annihilation, with the bone-faced bear whose roar was the scream of a woman that it ate, I’m going to assume this movie is going to deliver.
On The Count Of Three (Comedy)
Jerrod Carmichael makes his directorial debut with this “pitch-black comedy” about two friends who have decided to end it all but have given themselves one last day to live. The opening scene in the trailer sets the tone immediately with Carmichael shutting down his friend (played by Christopher Abbott) attempting to play Papa Roach’s “Last Resort” on the car stereo on the day they are going to kill themselves. What follows is a montage of two guys, at the end of their ropes, making the most of living with zero consequences. With Tiffany Haddish, JB Smoove, and Henry Wrinkler all making appearances, this movie looks to be a heartfelt entrance into the feature film world for Carmichael.
The Kids In The Hall (Comedy)
Fans of Kids In The Hall will be excited that after 27 years Canada’s favourite sketch show is attempting a comeback, and I hope it hits the mark. But I do wonder if five white men in their 60s can manage to live up to the iconic, edginess of their 20-year-old selves. The trailer shows Dave Foley dealing with a Lorne Michaels-esque producer character played by Mark McKinney in a self aware send up explaining the return of the show after so many years (apparently a curse is involved?). But we quickly get a few glimpses of what The Kids In The Hall do best, which is big ridiculous characters in funny situations, all ending with an invisible gun bit that looks to be hilariously dumb. If you know Kids in the Hall then all I gotta say is, 10 bucks is 10 bucks.
This Much I Know To Be True (Documentary)
Andrew Dominik directs this feature length documentary showcasing the working relationship between musicians Nick Cave and Warren Ellis as they perform songs from albums Ghosteen and Carnage. The trailer starts with Nick Cave describing a small white statue of the devil as a baby, we then see him breath deeply at the beginning of an interview, and then we are shown Nick sitting at a grand piano in a dark studio backlit by flashing lights on the ground. What follows is beautifully cinematic performance footage mixed with engaging behind the scenes interactions as Nick Cave speaks over top of it all. If you don’t know a lot about Nick Cave, this trailer will make you want to learn more.
Read about Nick Cave’s immersive Stranger Than Kindness exhibition on now in Montreal until August 8.
The Pentaverate (Comedy)
In a month of reviews where old guys are bringing back vehicles that once brought them success, I am happy to say Mike Myers is not attempting a reboot! Instead he is introducing us to a new world, with new characters, and some great supporting cast with the new Netflix film The Pentaverate. Is he playing multiple roles? Of course he is. But this story that revolves around an old-time Canadian reporter who finds himself trying to uncover the mysteries of an ancient secret society is perfect for him to launch a whole new roster of absurd personalities. As long as he’s not asking people if he’s making them horny and doing multiple visual dick gags I think this has a chance of being a good return for him.
Wayne’s World (Comedy)
The feature film that launched Mike Myers into stardom and made “Bohemian Rhapsody” one of the greatest sing-along party songs of all time, still holds up to this day. Wayne’s World is a must see for comedy fans and remains the highest grossing movie to ever come out of Saturday Night Live. I personally saw it six times in theatres at the tender age of 11. Watch the trailer if not only for the classic “Hey Wayne” bike crash, which I will argue is still one of the funniest pratfalls in movie history. The neck brace really sells it.
Happy Trails to you…until we meet again.
Cameron Macleod is a writer and comedian living in Vancouver, BC