Mar 22, 2015

Trailing Off: "Pixels" (2015)

Welcome to the weekly column Trailing Off in which I take a look at a trailer from the past week and analyze its potential. This will be done using an obnoxious amount of analyzing and personal thoughts on the cast and crew as well as expectations. Coming every Sunday (it's called Trailing Off for a reason), I will attempt to highlight films ranging from new blockbusters to lesser known indies and give them their due. Partially to spread awareness, I do believe that there is an art to the sell and will do my best to highlight why these trailers matter or don't with approval (trove) or disapproval (trash). So please stop by, recommend some trailers, and I will see you next time.

Trailer in Discussion

Directed By: Chris Colombus
Written By: Timothy Dowling (Screenplay), Tim Herlihy (Screenplay), Patrick Jean (Story), Adam Sandler
Starring: Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Michelle Monaghan

- Preamble -

It is odd that while I cannot claim to have been a big Adam Sandler in the past few years, I have chosen quite a few of his films for this series. I previously did The Cobbler a few months ago, which received rather positive remarks from me. Now we are met with a return to big budgeted spectacle with Pixels. I know nothing about the film other than that the artwork looks oddly reminiscent of video games and other properties that may make me believe that this is just going to be a Wreck-It Ralph, but with live action elements and a lot of aloof humor mixed in. I still remember Sandler's Bedtime Stories, which may be the last time he was thrown into a CGI universe like this. It was effective enough, even if the look wasn't always consistent.
The odd thing is that maybe he is trying to rebrand himself after a string of failures. Sure, Grown Ups 2 was a fairly successful film that even inspired a podcast. However, it was still critically maligned and the middle ground between the satire he discussed in Funny People and his reality of doing hack work is a little harder to distinguish with each passing year. However, I do think that he was trying to mix things up with The Cobbler and is thus trying to do more interesting things with his career. I don't know what, but he could still have the ability to make a good movie.
The bigger aspect to be enticed by is the presence of Chris Colombus, who has been somewhat forgotten in recent years. After helping to launch the Harry Potter franchise, his work hasn't been nearly as high profile. Speaking as even within that series his films are considered the weakest, there's probability that he could be bringing some spectacle back. If not, he at least has the pedigree to shoot for the moon and do something interesting. He has made high budgeted family fare before. So who knows. This might pan out if the script is as good as the concepts behind it could be. I'm not thinking that it will be a marvelous project, but it should at least be worth a chuckle.

- Dissection -

I'll let this fan edited trailer from the Futurama episode "Tales of Interest" tell you why you should probably just watch Futurama instead of seeing this movie:

- One Sentence Sell -

Adam Sandler returns in a film that is mean to be a comedic look at fighting video games, but what is so interesting about it?

- Trash or Trove? -

I'm sorry. The general concept behind it could have been interesting, but I honestly feel like there isn't much going on that wasn't better done in that Futurama episodes. If this seems like a Futurama plug, it's because I feel like Futurama did it far more effectively in less time and with a smaller budget. Don't believe me? Watch Futurama for a bit and tell me that Futurama didn't do this better first.

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