Sound of my Voice: As a pair of documentary filmmakers infiltrate a cult run by a tattooed Brit Marling, things don’t go exactly as they expected, promising creepy results—and very creepy music. Offbeat and compelling, this is easily the best trailer for a movie opening this week.
Bernie: The unlikely pairing of Jack Black and Shirley MacLaine, in addition to the promise of dark humor about the funeral home employee who befriends and then possibly murders a salty, loaded widow, makes Bernie’s trailer one of the most promising of all the films opening this weekend.
The Broken Tower: While James Franco’s endless experimentation with various art forms, and seemingly limitless desire to test our patience, does get trying, his take on the life and times of underrated poet Hart Crane, who leapt to his death in the Gulf of Mexico from a steamboat in 1932, seems like a better bet than, say, Your Highness.
96 Minutes: Carjacking thriller 96 Minutes caught our eye thanks to high-speed car chases, wayward teenagers and plenty of film festival love.
The Giant Mechanical Man: As far as romantic comedies go, one about a sad zookeeper and a street performer who dresses like a robot doesn’t seem at all bad. Topher Grace’s creepy long hair might not have needed so much time in the trailer—why give away your scares up front?—but if the desire to see something wholesome strikes, this one doesn’t look half bad.
The Raven: A madman acts out the gruesome murders from the stories of Edgar Allen Poe while the writer himself (John Cusack) helps olden-days police to catch the killer. The Poe angle seems unnecessary for what otherwise seems a study, scary thriller. With little spooky competition in theaters this weekend, this is the slasher to beat.
Citizen Gangster: Bank heists are hard to pull off in the best situations, and unfortunately Felicity alum Scott Speedman isn’t exactly in those. With Citizen Gangster, his Edwin Boyd seems to spend a lot of time leaping over bank counters but otherwise lacks punch. Actually balancing a checkbook seems more likely than going to catch this one.
The Five-Year Engagement: Despite being written by Jason Segal, who did quite a nice job with The Muppets, and some of the team that was behind Bridesmaids, this Splenda-sweet date movie isn’t getting any favors from its trailer, which seems to show off the worst and most grating parts of the engagements, from listening to people dream about a dress to awkward events with families. We get enough of this in real life.
Safe: Jason Statham in a movie where he… is some sort of wronged ex-law enforcement type who uses his crazy skills to stay alive despite bullets coming at him from every angle. How many times has dude made the same movie?