UPCOMING MOVIES 2009: OUTLANDER and Elba, Ali and Beyonce in OBSESSED

I’ve been going trailer crazy recently. Sampling trailers old and trailers new. under the “new” heading two trailers/upcoming films that have me (to differing degrees) interested are OUTLANDER and OBSESSED.
What drew my attention to OUTLANDER, beyond the premise of THE HIDDEN meets PREDATOR meets BEOWULF, is the international poster above (the US poster as usual lacks any creativity, being basically just a closeup of the stars face. Ala HANCOCK, TRAITOR, etc. Note to studios, the best way to sell an action movie, isn’t with a big face. Star or no, it just shows a staggering lack of creativity on the marketing department’s side). That said, having Jim Caviezel as your star is also a strong selling point. His work in Tony Scott’s DEJA VU opposite Denzel Washington, showed an actor who brings his A game.

So I watched the two International trailers for OUTLANDER, and it looks fun, if not exactly original. It’s heavily advertised as being from one of the producers of THE LORD OF THE RINGS, but this tale of an alien predator and prey that lands among the Vikings circa 700BC, is very much the three movies I stated above (THE HIDDEN, PREDATOR and BEOWULF) mixed together. That said if director/writer Howard McCain can offer a fresh delivery and spin, the film could rise above its obvious influences to be something enjoyable.

This will be Howard McCain’s first feature film. His made for TV movie, 1998’s PERFECT PREY, was very derivative of SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, but did show moments of style, and you can see the growth of that style in the trailer for OUTLANDER. We’ll see if that growth extends through the movie in total.

OUTLANDER (according to their website) is getting a limited release in theaters this coming weekend, so if you’re near a major city (DC, New York, LA, etc. Full list is here.)

So you can catch it on the big screen if so inclined. For the majority of you, this should be coming to a DVD near you, shortly. Innitial feedback sounds positive, so I think it’s worth a look.
Possibly, with the exception of THE WATCMEN, the best trailer I’ve seen so far for a flick in 2009 is OBSESSED. A thriller/drama it’s a reworking of FATAL ATTRACTION, but man that cast just has me wowed!

Idris Elba has that old-fashioned Leading man charisma, but unfortunately has not been given leading man roles. Though even in the largely supporting roles he has been relegated to, his presence brings a weight and gravity that elevates the films he’s in.

His films include: ONE LOVEonelove, SOMETIMES IN APRILsometimesinapril, WORLD OF TROUBLE (TV Pilot), DADDY’S LITTLE GIRLS, THE REAPING, 28 WEEKS LATER, AMERICAN GANGSTER, THIS CHRISTMAS, THE NO 1 LADIES DETECTIVE AGENCY, ROCKNROLLA, THE HUMAN CONTRACT, THE UNBORN (Speaking of the UNBORN, exactly what is this poster selling? :). Perhaps not the most comforting of signs, when a ghost flick has to resort to an ass shot to sell the flick. Not that I’m complaining, just mentioning it. :).


However, with the OBSESSED Idris Elba moves into leading man territory. And surrounded by stunners such as Beyonce Knowles, Ali Larter, and Christine Lahti, there aren’t many better roles… for a leading man.
The trailer looks fantastic. The film is directed by Steve Shill, his first feature film, but he has a lengthy resume directing episodes of some of the best television shows; and is written by David Loughery. If the film can live up to its preview, this film could be as good, if not better than the champ of homewrecking terror… FATAL ATTRACTION.

Film is produced by RAINFOREST FILMS (unfortunately their site appears to be flash only, so I won’t link to it. You guys know how I feel about FLASH only sites, it’s a definite no-no in my book. Note to rainforest, include an HTML entrance for people who don’t use FLASH for security reasons, or just in the name of being easily accessible to the widest number of people. It’s just good business sense) and distributed by Sony Screen Gems. So far no one has released a poster, but hopefully soon, and hopefully it will be good.

Now of course the preview could be completely misleading, and the film could be a stinker, ala Spike Lee’s MIRACLE AT ST. ANNA, but I’m hoping not. And giving the track record of the cast and the director, my money is on it being great. Let’s put it this way, I’m going to be in the theater when this flick, OBSESSED opens in April 2009.

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