First Glance: “Persuasion”

The hard-working Dakota Johnson stars in the upcoming Netflix Original “Persuasion”, an adaptation of author Jane Austen’s final novel. First published in 1817, “Persuasion” was initially well received but has since earned a healthy fanbase. This latest take on the beloved story is directed by Carrie Cracknell and co-written by Ronald Base and Alice Victoria Winslow.

Johnson plays Anne Elliot, a seemingly happy young English woman with plans on marrying her love, Navy Captain Frederick Wentworth (Cosmo Jarvis). But then she’s persuaded by her blue-blooded family to give him up. Years later she finds her self torn between a dashing suitor played by Henry Golding and Frederick who re-enters her life. The period setting looks well realized and the cast (which also includes Richard Grant, Nikki Amuka-Bird, Mia McKenna-Bruce, Ben Bailey-Smith, among others) hints at a fresh new take on the literary classic.

“Persuasion” premieres July 15th on Netflix. Check out the trailer below and let me know if you’ll be seeing it or taking a pass.

Movie Poster Spotlight: “Prey”

Yesterday I shared the first full trailer for “Prey”, the next installment in the shaky “Predator” franchise. This film is actually a prequel that shows the technically evolved alien hunter combing Comanche territory some 300 years ago. I have to admit, the trailer looks pretty good. I say that as someone who adores the 1987 original film but hasn’t cared for any of the follow-ups. I’m really hoping this one turns out different. It’s streaming only release is a little worrisome, but I like the looks of it so far. And the new poster only excites me more. It’s simply but really clever, especially for those of us who knows that isn’t green paint under the warrior’s eyes.

DIRECTOR – Dan Trachtenberg

WRITER – Patrick Aison

STARRING – Amber Midthunder, Dakota Beavers, Dane DiLiegro, Stormee Kipp, Michelle Thrush, Julian Black Antelope

RELEASE – August 5, 2022

First Glance: “Black Adam”

The next installment in DC’s Extended Universe has been a long time coming. The anti-hero Black Adam was originally scheduled to be the villain in 2019’s “Shazam!”. Instead, the producers chose to give him his own movie with Dwayne Johnson set to star and produce. After a significant COVID-19 delay, the movie is finally set to release this year with Jaume Collet-Serra attached to direct. And now we have our first full trailer.

5,000 years after being imbued with the powers of the Egyptian gods, Johnson’s angry Black Adam is freed from his earthly tomb and sets out to unleash his special brand of justice. But not only does the movie focus on Teth-Adam, but we also get Doctor fate (Pierce Brosnan), Hawkman (Aldis Hodge), Atom Smasher (Noah Centineo), Cyclone (Quintessa Swindell), and Isis (Sarah Shahi). What a cool batch of supporting superheros. And Black Adam is a fascinating character himself. If the movie gives him the edge he deserves, this could be a lot of fun.

“Black Adam” is scheduled to release October 21st. Check out the trailer below and let me know if you’ll be seeing it or taking a pass.

First Glance: “Prey”

John McTiernan’s 1987 action classic “Predator” has long been a favorite of mine. It’s one of my favorite action films of the 1980s and it remains my favorite Arnold Schwarzenegger movie. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for the sequels that followed. Hollywood has tried several times to bring the series back to life, but they’ve never come close to the greatness of the original. But now they’re giving it another shot. This time by heading 300 years into the past.

“Prey” from director Dan Trachtenberg centers around a young Comanche woman who goes head-to-head with the alien predator who has come to earth to hunt. Amber Midthunder plays Naru, a Comanche warrior who is dismissed as weak by those from her own tribe. But when the predator threatens her people, it’s Naru who must step up and protect her own. The first full trailer looks wild and it gives hope that we may finally get a “Predator” movie worthy of the first one. Interestingly, 20th Century Studios is releasing it straight to streaming which is cause for concern. Still, it looks like a lot of fun.

“Prey” premieres August 5th exclusively on Hulu. Check out the trailer below and let me know if you’ll be seeing it or taking a pass.

First Glance: “Beast”

Idris Elba protects his daughters from a man-eating lion. That’s the kind of popcorn entertainment I can go for. And that’s what we get in the upcoming feature film “Beast” from Icelandic director Baltasar Kormákur. The movie offers up a fun and meaty (no pun intended) role for the effortlessly charismatic Elba, and the first trailer gives us a good taste (ok, pun intended there) of what Kormákur is going for.

Elba plays a widowed father who takes his daughters to South Africa where he and their mother first met. While there, he takes them out on a safari led by an old friend (Sharlto Copley). But their fun day of site-seeing turns bad after they’re attacked by a ferocious lion. Soon the group is trapped on the reserve where they encounter other predators besides the deadly cat. As the trailer shows, the film quickly turns into an all-out survival thriller with Elba doing everything he can to protect his girls. Sure it looks a little silly, but it also looks like the kind of entertainment that can be an absolute blast. I’m in.

“Beast” hits theaters August 19th. Check out the trailer below and let me know if you’ll be seeing it or taking a pass.

First Glance: “Vengeance”

Texas takes center stage in the upcoming film “Vengeance”, a new comedy thriller written and directed by B. J. Novak. It’s the directorial debut for “The Office” alum who also stars alongside Issa Rae, Boyd Holbrook, and Ashton Kutcher. It’s yet another film halted by COVID-19 but now set for its full release via Focus Features.

Novak plays a New York City journalist and podcaster who travels down to the heart of Texas to investigate the death of an old flame who he barely knew. While he supposedly just wants to discover the truth, he soon finds himself teaming up with the girl’s brother (Holbrook) who is much more interested in seeking revenge. Hijinks ensue as Novak’s ‘fish out of water’ character tries to fit in with the locals. The culture-clash elements are definitely present and look to feed much of film’s dark comedy. There’s some real potential here.

“Vengeance” hits theaters July 29th. Check out the trailer below and let me know if you’ll be seeing it or taking a pass.