Midnight Showing: Spectre (2015)

The latest installment of Midnight Showing sees the guys head to the cinema to check out the newest film in the 007 franchise, the Sam Mendes-directed Spectre. In what is possibly Daniel Craig’s final foray in the immaculately-tailored suit of James Bond, we get what we usually would be craving: an origin story. However, when it comes to Bond, less may be more. Or, really, more may be more. More pure evil, more world-destroying weapons, more senseless beddings. Less petty personal Blofeld problems. Despite that, we’ll all forget the plot to the film in six months and be munching popcorn once again watching it together.

Spectre (2015)
Director
Sam Mendes
Stars
Daniel Craig, Christoph Waltz, Léa Seydoux, Ralph Fiennes, Monica Belucci

Curated by: The Bit Players

3.0

Aired Friday, November 20, 2015
The latest installment of Midnight Showing sees the guys head to the cinema to check out the newest film in the 007 franchise, the Sam Mendes-directed Spectre. In what is possibly Daniel Craig's final foray in the immaculately-tailored suit of James Bond, we get what we usually would be craving: an origin story. However, when it comes to Bond, less may be more. Or, really, more may be more. More pure evil, more world-destroying weapons, more senseless beddings. Less petty personal Blofeld problems. Despite that, we'll all forget the plot to the film in six months and be munching popcorn once again watching it together.

The Trailer Park, Volume 2 Suicide Squad, Joy, The Revenant, Spectre, Deadpool, The Hateful Eight

The Trailer Park will be The Bit Players’ periodic haven for discussing all of the biggest trailers of the moment. We take to YouTube and push a a group text to its reasonable limits to hash out our excitements and concerns based on the trailers alone, from those with a connoisseur-level appreciation for the art of trailers to others with a milder approach to the short clips that get us pumped for the movies we love. Enjoy our back-and-forth as we see these trailers for the first time and react to them together.

The Trailer Park will be The Bit Players' periodic haven for discussing all of the biggest trailers of the moment. We take to YouTube and push a a group text to its reasonable limits to hash out our excitements and concerns based on the trailers alone, from those with a connoisseur-level appreciation for the art of trailers to others with a milder approach to the short clips that get us pumped for the movies we love. Enjoy our back-and-forth as we see these trailers for the first time and react to them together.

Suicide Squad

Jarryd Baxter: Bonesaw is ready!

Jeff Pearson: I know nothing about the Suicide Squad. Someone explain why I should be excited about this besides getting to see Will Smith in the limelight again.

JB: I am in the same boat, Jeff. But it seems like that other boat is sinking. This trailer does not look good.

And I love Will Smith.

JP: I guess the appeal is the whole ragtag band of superheroes angle? This is probably just something that you have to have already been a fan of to care about, so I just don't. Give me Mystery Men any day.

Clark Carmichael: I just don't get what DC and Warner Bros are doing with this new slate of movies. It will either be an epic landing or a leg break at the femur. I mean, what are the odds that any of these movies are better than Man of Steel? The trailer for MoS was the single most excitement inducing thing in recent memory. These trailers are not that. I doubt the movies will be.

Anders Oster: As much as I love watching a good leg break at the femur, I'm hoping this will be good. I am actually very excited for this movie though. I am a huge fan of the Arkham video game series and this movie's villains are all ones that I have personally fought and ruthlessly crushed. I am most excited to see Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn because I can't imagine a more perfect person to embody that role. She's a friggin' smoke show and has those crazy eyes. Plus I hear there will be a Batman cameo and I can't help but wonder if it will be Ben Affleck trying to gain popularity for his potential Batman solo film.

JB: Smoke shows, femur breaks, and Will Smith? You guys are talking me into this.

JP: I'm just not convinced. Not even a femur snapping like a twig could save this one for me, I think. The only character I really care about is Will Smith. Just the dude, Will Smith; not whatever character he's playing. Even the Joker seems utterly uninteresting, probably given the fact that he just needed to be retired after Heath Ledger's iconic performance. No need to revisit that.

Maybe I just need to build a rapport with these cats in Arkham, like Anders. That might be the ticket.

CC: I agree with your sentiments on the Joker, Jeff. But it seems the world does not. All I hear anyone talking about is how awesome Jared Leto's casting is. I'm sure we all hope it is worthy of excitement, but I can't help but wince at this trailer. Comic book movies have probably seen their peak for quite some time.

Except for Marvel finishing their Infinity Gauntlet storyline, which has greater implications simply for its scope and vastness in film history.

JP: Yeah I keep thinking that maybe I'm just not the target audience for this (and I'm not), so that could be why this is the least compelling thing I've seen in some time, but with the total dud that was the Fantastic Four, it shows that America just isn't going to eat up whatever masked crusader nonsense studios put in front of them, either. I think all signs point to this being a completely underwhelming movie, both in terms of quality and reception.

Brian Urrutia: So I think this movie actually has some potential to be interesting if only because the premise. As Anders mentioned, this is no mere ragtag bunch of superheroes; these are bona fide baddies. They got kill counts to their name, the Joker has a rich history with audiences (I'm not super amped about Leto either but everyone on the internet sure seems so), nearly all have frustrated a generation of gamers in the Arkham series, etc. A movie that actually has villains as our central protags may bring some nuance to the ol comic-book movie genre. But the movie has to keep emphasizing their villainy and not let their central protag status morph them into empathetic anti-heroes where the drama is how well will they work together with an established hero, say Batman. DC seems to know this too. As Andie also pointed out, Batman makes a small cameo where he's duking it out with the Joker (looks like from the trailer). So if DC can stay true to their villainous protags, then this movie could be even cooler than that "The True Story of the Three Little Pig Books" from elementary school. The stakes are that high.

But do I think that this is going to be executed well enough to be a classic? No. No I do not.

I assume they'll use the same widget we get in most comic book movies: origin/flashback-->recruitment--->training montage-->first run in with antagonist goes wrong-->meeting of the minds in which the defeated protags appeal to sentimentality and restate their goals (real acting takes place here)--> (maybe if we are lucky we get another montage next)-->final boss defeated

JP: I'm going to print that checklist for when I see it to see how spot-on you are.

Just kidding, I'll never see this. 1/5.

BU: A hopeful 2/5 for me.

JB: Hopeful for a 2/5? I'm glad you're keeping expectations at an ambitious level. 2/5 for me as well; Will Smith gets the bump.

BU: Depending on how optimistic Andie is, this movie may get below a 3/5. It may get, like, a D. My favorite grade.

JP: Andie is giving this a 5, for sure.

JB: Mr. 5 Stars.

JP:

JB: I love that he personally fought that ragtag band of villains.

BU: Like, "Listen Bax, you know you gotta low ball this one because ol' Anders 'I give this movie as many stars as I have digits' Oster is going to drive our rating unreasonably high."

This is his battle.

CC: This trailer gets a 1/5 from me.

JP: Anders is going to be none too pleased when he sees this. We're effectively kicking the Suicide Squad while they're down, as he has already laid an impressive ass-whooping upon them. I actually feel kind of villainous myself.

BU: He's always down for a good baddie-beating.

JP: Well then he'll be pleased with our work in here.

AO: I am excited for this movie but I admit the trailer is not fantastic. Good enough for 3 stars from me though.

I'm expecting at least a four or a five from their next trailer.

JP: At least!

AO: The potential is there!

JP: Is there 4 or 5 star material even available for them to work with? They might have to start pulling clips from Ledger's Joker. Or at least your video game footage. Send David Ayer some clips of the cell phone Arkham gameplay video that you sent us!

Ratings:
Anders: 3
Brian: 2
Clark: 1
Jarryd: 2
Jeff: 1

Overall: 1.8/5

Joy

AO: I love the Christmas-themed "You Can't Always Get What You Want."

I'm excited for this sequel. Serene was super boring which makes sense I guess, so maybe Joy will be more fun.

JP:

AO: Thank you, Jefferson.

JP: Although the grammarian in me is itching to say your analogy falls short in presenting the adjectival form of "serenity." I guess this movie makes no sense as a sequel to Serenity, though.

JB: No one saw Serena. Nobody. Only Jeff in the world.

JP: I never saw it. I don't even think it was possible to.

JB: It isn't. Same with that Polar Bear movie. The Ruffalo one.

AO: I really want to know the exact number of people who saw Serena.

JP: Serena wasn't David O., was it?

AO: Because it has to be in the double digits.

JB: Came out over a year ago. Who saw it? No one. Zero.

AO: I don't think so.

BU: Serena — not David O.

JB: I'm very curious about the history of making that movie.

BU: That'd be real bad if he goes to making straight-to-video.

JB: Who had naked photos of whom? Studio exec? J. Law? Serena herself?

I have watched this trailer a few times and still have no idea what it's about. It seems plausible that these could be the same characters from Silver Linings OR American Hustle; flip a coin. I really enjoy these Russell movies but I'm done getting overly excited about them.

JP: I'm kind of in the same boat. It's way too vague to really deduce anything about the film. I guess that's the nature of a teaser, though. At this point it could be about anything.

AO: I liked the trailer a good bit even though I have no idea what it's about. Seeing who all is involved in this movie, they didn't have to try very hard in the first place. 4/5

CC: I can't wait for Joy. David O. Russell is a badass. And maybe that warps my view of this trailer but I'm giving it a 5/5.

JP: I'll definitely be interested to see a trailer proper for Joy. It may have been a bit premature to include the film in the Trailer Park series given the fact that almost nothing is revealed about the movie aside from disconnected shots of the actors, but since it's David O. Russell I felt like we had to. However, if we are truly grading the quality of the trailer rather than the presumed quality of the film (which I guess I've never really done given the fact that Suicide Squad's trailer very well could be a good trailer for a very terrible movie), I can't give it higher than a 3. I just have no idea what to expect yet.

JB: My last comments may seem a bit disparaging, but we should actually commend this trailer for not revealing too much. 3/5.

BU: 3/5.

Ratings:
Anders: 4
Brian: 3
Clark: 5
Jarryd: 3
Jeff: 3

Overall: 3.6/5

The Revenant

JP: Oh baby. Give it all the awards.

JB: I'm pooped. I can scarcely imagine the emotional toll that the entire movie will require. I'm all aboard. This one looks special.

JP: I just want to know, with what time is Iñárritu making this? Didn't he just crush 2014 with Birdman? Does he sleep? It's not supposed to be possible to do this.

AO: This movie looks amazing. Another prime opportunity for Leo to get hilariously burned come awards season. I'll get straight to the point here. 5/5. This trailer is awesome.

JB: He must be a machine. Leo is too. I am with you, Anders. It's an easy 5/5 and maybe the best trailer since Man of Steel.

Leo won't get humiliated this time. Crawling out of the mud is right out of the Descent playbook. If the results are akin to that of a blood bath in a cave, the Oscar is his to lose.

JP: I could watch this trailer over and over. Iñárritu and Emmanuel Lubezki teaming up for straight up action scenes gets my blood boiling. The way the camera follows Leo around during that final sequence and he shoots the dude down off his horse in the distance and the shot never skips a beat. Good god.

CC: The trailer of the year? Or simply showing us the movie of the year? Probably both.

AO: Pretty awesome. Loving all the trailer love. I'd still put Star Wars' 16/5 ahead of this perfect 5/5, but yes, Man of Steel's 25/5 is the best.

JP: I think it has the distinct quality of doing both. Like, this is just unfuckwithable footage it would seem, so any way it's edited together for a trailer is going to make it trailer of the year.

CC: A movie full of amazing-ness. I can't wait.

JP: I kind of agree that Leo isn't going to get his statue with this one. It seems too hyperviolent to get that kind of love despite the fact that I'm sure he will knock it out of the park.

CC: As long as Tom Hardy wins his supporting, I'm good. 5/5.

JP: I'm withholding my 5 for as long as I possibly can to just continue to gush over this trailer. Some serious firepower coming out of Mexico again. This, Birdman, Crimson Peak, the inevitable masterpiece Cuarón is cooking up.

My role in the Trailer Park is apparently to just find (and create) moments where clips from Always Sunny are appropriate.

AO: Someone has to.

JB: I recently saw that episode. "A botched necklift! She's dead as disco!"

Or maybe it was a different one, I don't know.

BU: I think Anders is right with saying this will set Leo up to get "hilariously burned" at the Oscars, especially once Tom Hardy wins for Best Supporting role. 4/5.

JP: You're not getting off that easy, Brian. What takes away that last star? This is easily a 5/5 for me.

Ratings:
Anders: 5
Brian: 4
Clark: 5
Jarryd: 5
Jeff: 5

Overall: 4.8/5

Spectre

JB: I'm not as invested in the 007 franchise as most of you guys, but I'm still pretty excited about this one. The villains in the Daniel Craig Bonds keep getting better and there probably won't be a let down with this installment. As for the trailer itself, it's good but not great.

JP: Just seeing this trailer fills me with all kinds of mixed emotions. On the one hand, it looks awesome. On the other, it reminds me I still have like 23 Bond movies to watch. Which is not appetizing.

CC: Appetizers are, by definition appetizing, Jeff. I agree though that the trailer is good, not great.

JP: Seeing the trailer on the big screen, with that massive Bond theme, got me pretty well hooked.

JB: I'm so jealous that we didn't have that trailer for our Rogue Nation visit. I was going to praise the trailer for not revealing too much, but I'm not sure if that's true. Do we know what's going on in the trailer? Do we ever know what's going on in a Bond movie?

JP: Bond movies themselves don't reveal too much; it's as if they're trailers for longer, more sensical movies yet to be released.

JB: I'm interested in seeing those movies.

AO: I'm definitely completely on board and excited for this movie obviously. I really like the trailer just because I get to finally see Christoph Waltz as Blofeld and see many of the other characters. Looks like there will be some awesome action sequences and cool gadgets too. An the music as usual will be great. Still it seems like it could have been better. Trailer 1 had it going on. Trailer 2: 4/5

JP: I can't imagine how rapey James Bond would be in those extended versions.

AO: I'm sure everything they ever cut were Bond-bedding scenes. There's probably an Inidana Jones-style warehouse somewhere just chock full of those.

JB: Until we find those and make a trailer from them, Bond is getting a 3/5 from me.

BU: 4/5 from me. I feel like this movie will finally incorporate all the consequences and plot elements of previous Daniel Craig Bond movies.

JP: Are Daniel Craig Bond movies noticeably better or different than the previous incarnations? I wonder what influenced that.

AO: Oh yeah, I think they are for the most part. I think the desire to make a good movie is a heavily influencing factor...

JP: What's the point of that?!

AO: I've had the same question during these Daniel Craig Bonds. Hopefully we'll finally find out.

JB: The desire to make a good movie? What a novel idea.

AO: Novels are bad. So this is definitely a bad idea. They've raised their standards too high. They can't keep making awesome movies forever and when they don't, we might see the end of the Bond franchise. Which is absolutely terrifying. I fear the day they stop churning out Golden Fingers and Eyes.

This movie will be awesome though.

JP: But the Bond franchise is founded on bad movies. When they can't keep making good movies, that's when the real franchise kicks back off. This is just a dormant period we have to endure.

CC: I agree, Jeff. These "good" movies are boring.

JP: The most ridiculous part of the Bonds I've seen so far in my (admittedly minimal) research so far was the one where the baddie dumped gas all over Fort Knox and all of the soldiers started dropping like fainted goats. You put "Entrance to the Gladiators" over that and you've got silent comedy gold. I guess I can't count on moments like that in Spectre, though, so I'm going to give this one a 3 as well.

CC: The Spectre trailer gets a 2/5 from me. It doesn't have me as excited as it should.

Ratings:
Anders: 4
Brian: 4
Clark: 2
Jarryd: 3
Jeff: 3

Overall: 3.2/5

Deadpool

JP: *Eyes go blank as another superhero movie trailer plays*

BU: Oh, is this the one where Van Wilder becomes an assassin?

JP: Huh. On a figurative level that basically describes every single superhero movie, doesn't it?

BU: It does when it stars Ryan Reynolds, Jeff! Word on the boards is that this was "the role that he was born to play." And I actually think they're right. He plays Deadpool for about 20 minutes in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, basically eclipsing every other performance in the movie. And I know we all think it's because that movie was awfully bad (Clark can confirm), but Reynolds just feels like the perfect snarky, lethal guy. Yes?

CC: I am not super excited for this but I will still go see it in theaters anyways. At least it will be rated R. That's something different I guess. Can you tell I'm lukewarm on this?

What I really want is for Marvel to announce the Infinity Wars movies will be rated R and feature heavy blood, guts, nudity, cursing and irreligious acts. THAT would be exciting.

JP: Ah, the old 'TV-MA HBGNCIA'

The IA is always the toughest to get.

CC: Yeah, but it is the sweetest.

BU: Has Disney ever released an R-rated movie? That may hold up the Infinity Stones folk from pushing that violence and nudity envelope.

JP: I seriously dread the two minutes I have to lose watching this. I was really tempted to just drop some vague snark and rate it without ever watching.

Related question: who do you think will be the first to do a full podcast episode without having watched the movie?

CC: Great question. Easy answer: Anders. Movie: Jaws.

JP: Only explanation for the 4? Didn't want to seem to eager?

CC: Yeah, he went first. He didn't know we were all 5s. 4 is the safest number. It's a proven fact.

JP: #Jawsgate. Anders is sweatin'.

AO: I stand by that 4. And I'm also standing by this 5 for Deadpool. I agree 100% with Joe on this one. I think this is truly the role he was born to play. And seeing TJ Miller in this is awesome too. After watching the hilarious original short film of Deadpool killing everyone in an SUV on YouTube earlier this year, this trailer was a great follow up. I can't wait to see this character and this movie.

JP: Notice he didn't say he watched Jaws...

AO: My lips are sealed. Unlike Jaws' lips when he eats seals.

BU: Ohhhhhhh!

JP:

BUT JAWS NEVER EATS A SEAL! HE IS PULLING THE WOOL OVER OUR EYES WITH WIT!

CC: Also unlike Seal's lips when he opens his jaws. #Jawsgate.

JP:

JP: My head hurts. That trailer was terrible. 1/5.

JP: Usually I tend to side with Bax when it comes to these kinds of movies, but in this case I couldn't disagree more. It's the SOUL that hurts after watching this trailer, not the head. 1/5.
Actually, 2/5. The inclusion of "X Gon Give it to Ya" is deserving of another star.

JB: Yeah I guess we're just not on the same page, Jeff. I had it at 2 stars before that song.

JP: I mean DMX is no Ja Rule, but...

BU: Every thug needs a ladaaaaayy.

CC: Deadpool trailer gets a 4/5 for me

JB: Lukewarm? And a 4? This MCU grade inflation is worse than Jawsgate.

CC: The trailer! Not the actual movie. And it's not MCU. Geez.

BU: 4/5 from me too! Water's warm.

Ratings:
Anders: 5
Brian: 4
Clark: 4
Jarryd: 1
Jeff: 2

Overall: 3.2/5

The Hateful Eight

AO: I imagine this will be another 5 star movie for me and I can't wait to see Kurt Russell in this, but the trailer just doesn't quite do it for me. As excited as I am for this movie to come out, the trailer didn't do anything to increase my anticipation.

CC: This will be amazing. Mark my words.

JP: Did you watch the wrong trailer by mistake, Anders? This looks amazing.

AO: 3 out of 5 stars. Unsubscribe.

JB: I guess I am just numb from the Revenant trailer, because this doesn't get me going either. It looks beautiful and I'm sure the movie will be good (maybe great). But much like Anders, this trailer, nor anything else, has done anything to increase my anticipation of a new Tarantino movie. It's been pretty high since the moment we heard of its development. 3/5

Though I am pretty excited for the reprise of the most under-appreciated comedic actor of this or any generation.

BU: Couldn't say it better myself, Andie and Geri. 3/5 stars (for the trailer though I'm sure the movie will be a 5/5)

CC: Two words: Kurt Russell. Can't-stop-won't-stop. Tarantino gets it. The trailer is a 4/5 and the movie will be a 5/5.

JP: I'm so in the camp rooting for the Captain Ronaissance.

It seems like there's some crazy reverse logic when it comes to grading these trailers, though. Like if the movie is going to be great (seemingly) then the trailer is graded on its own merits, but if it's an obviously total shit movie, then the trailer is almost collateral damage of its shittiness.

JB: Well, yes and no. Sometimes we get a great trailer for a bad movie (Man of Steel), for which the trailer might be judged on its own merit. But more often we get a bad trailer for a pretty good movie, and the movie suffers unjustly. Here, we have neither I suppose. We have potentially good movies with good trailers, and undoubtedly bad movies with bad trailers.

JP: It's a real chicken/egg situation.

JB: Let's not forget the purpose of movie trailers for the studios. And I think Anders is right - best trailer should be a category at the Ocsars.

JP: Anyway, I dig this trailer a lot. I'm unable to separate the source material from the edit offered, I suppose. This thing is a 5/5 for me. It looks absolutely ridiculous, fun, beautiful, like some crazy snow-covered western version of Cantebury Tales or something. I'm all in.

JB: Please tell me we have time to cover the new Will Smith flick!

Jeff - "Maybe next time..."

JP: Hopefully by that time we'll have a Bad Boys 3 trailer, too.

JB: We can dream.

Ratings:
Anders: 3
Brian: 3
Clark: 4
Jarryd: 3
Jeff: 5

Overall: 3.6/5