In this week’s batch o’ trailers, we get a sneak previews of: a superheroine going dark (very dark); Michael B. Jordan getting the eye of the tiger; the next Harry Potter side franchise and a new Transformers spin-offs; and the final season of House of Cards before the Netflix show comes tumbling down to a close.
Girl (Hailee Steinfeld) meets robot. Robot turn into car. Car go vroom. Other robots turn into jets, etc. Things go boom. This Transformers spin-off isn’t rocket science, people. It barely looks like a movie. Opens Dec. 25th, a.k.a. Christmas, because there was no coal left to put in your stocking.
Ah yes, the trailer as training montage. The second official promo clip for this follow-up to the stellar 2015 Michael B. Jordan joint finds our man hitting the heavy bag (literally) and getting called out on TV by none other than Viktor Drago, a.k.a. Ivan Drago’s son. Yes, this time it’s personal; cue a lot of eye-of-the-tiger fortitude, advice from Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky Balboa and loads of sparring/speedwork/sweating. It hits theaters on Nov. 21, i.e. not soon enough for us.
You don’t kick off your trailer with a dirge-like cover of the Doors’ “The End” unless you’re going to bring some serious doom and gloom, and this first look at the latest X-men joint — mining a classic comics storyline involving Jean Grey (Sophie Turner) going a little power-mad — suggests we’ve got a superhero bleak-buster on our hands. The usual X-suspects (Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Nicolas Hoult) are present and accounted for; Jessica Chastain joins as a side villain who we’re assuming is the Hellfire Club’s White Queen, but it’s all TBD still. It was supposed to open on Feb. 14 (because what says Valentine’s Day more than a mutant gone crazy?); Fox has now moved it to June 7th.
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
Young Dumbledore! Johnny Depp in dripping-with-evil mode, with a bitchin’ platinum ‘do! Ladies turning into snakes! Blue flames and flying things and sea monsters and Zoe Kravitz with a sultry accent! So many spells and CGI! The final trailer for the second of J.K. Rowling’s Potter-prequel trilogy looks like it’s edging toward darkness in the same manner that the Harry & Co. series did. If nothing else, this is one compelling sneak preview. Opens Nov. 16th.
House of Cards: The Final Season
It runs a little under a minute, but the final “teaser” of Netflix’s political drama — which, perhaps you’ve heard, has had a wee bit of drama go on behind the scenes — crams a lot of info into its compact frame. “My first 100 days as President have been … difficult,” says new commander-in-chief Claire Underwood (Robin Wright), before we hear her describe her husband’s death, see Greg Kinnear yell at her, see her model some serious Tammy-Faye-Baker-level mascara mishaps and are assured that whatever her late spouse told us “the last five years — don’t believe it.” The end begins on Nov. 2nd.
Who’s up for a kinder, gentler Kids, relocated to Hell-Ay and directed by Jonah Hill? The Moneyball actor’s directorial debut is not some sort of Apatovian romp, but a look back at a SoCal kid named Stevie (Sunny Suljic, of Killing of a Scared Deer and House With a Clock in Its Walls fame) and the crew of skaterats he runs with during the title’s time period. Also starring Lucas Hedges, because God forbid there’s a movie this fall he does not show up in; seriously, 2018 is the Autumn of the Hedgeaissance. Opens Oct. 19th.
Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2
The first trailer for Disney’s sequel played up the meta-comedy (So many princesses! So much intercorporate snark!); Trailer No. 2 emphasizes the new movie’s action sequences, with Ralph (John C. Reilly), Vanellope (Sarah Silverman) and a racer named Shank (Gal Gadot) whizzing around a whole new virtual world. Don’t worry, there’s still a Rick-roll gag and some Dark Net digs. Opens Nov. 21st.