This Week in Trailers: ‘Twilight,’ ‘Transylvania,’ Time Travel, and More

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Every Friday here at Flavorwire, we like to gather up the week’s new movie trailers, give them a look-see, and rank them from worst to best — while taking a guess or two about what they might tell us (or hide from us) about the movies they’re promoting. This week, we’ve got the teaser for the (hopefully) final Twilight movie, along with new films from Jenna Fischer, Chris Pine, Adam Sandler, Val Kilmer, Aubrey Plaza, Jesse Eisenberg, and more. Check ’em all out after the jump, and share your thoughts in the comments.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2

Here’s what’s enjoyable about being (as I’ve confessed before) utterly ignorant of the entirety of the Twilight empire: You can see a brief teaser trailer like this, which is pitched specifically to the “Twi-hards,” and take it as utter, absurdist nonsense. “We’re the same temperature now” is a line in a movie? Why is the not-pale guy wearing a flesh suit? Why is Kristen Stewart glaring at deer in the woods? Take it out of context: this assemblage of random images looks like the demo reel of a crazy person. Try walking up to someone on the street and explaining the sequence of events to them. (“The girl’s in the woods, and it’s her chance to shine, and the guy with the abs thinks she’s like herself, and the other guy says they’re the same temperature, and she’s gonna eat that deer!“) They’ll have you committed. It’s fun!

Hotel Transylvania

Good Lord, even in animated form, Sandler still can’t get away from David Spade and Kevin James. Kids are presumably the target audience for this one, and they’ll probably enjoy it just fine; anyone who knows anything about movie comedy, meanwhile, will wonder what kind of cajones it takes for Sandler and crew to attempt a gang-of-classics-monsters comedy in a world where Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein is readily available.

Rise of the Guardians

Anyone else a little creeped out by a Santa Claus that growls “And so… we will fight“? Do we really wanna see a movie about Santa, the Tooth Fairy, the Easter bunny, and the Sandman mounting up and going into battle? Is this some kind of bad dream? What the hell’s going on here?

People Like Us

Most of the (virtual) ink on People Like Us thus far has focused on the wild incongruity of a serious family drama coming from Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci (Kurtzman directed, they co-wrote with Jody Lambert), whose credits include the “screenplays” for the first two Transformers films. But these guys also wrote several episodes of Alias, a show just as heavy on drama as action, so they can clearly do the serious stuff; they also wrote Star Trek, so they can clearly do films that aren’t repulsive. It’s hard to tell whether People Like Us will fit either of those descriptions, though; we like everybody in it, but it does look an awful lot like one of those movies where the whole movie hinges on a secret (in this case, Banks and Pine’s connection) that there’s no good reason not to tell. We’re putting this one in the “we’ll see” column.

House at the End of the Street

Timing is key when it comes to movie promotion, so yes, this probably would be the best week to release a trailer for Hunger Games leading lady Jennifer Lawrence’s next starring vehicle, which finds her going the Elizabeth Olsen route and fronting a haunted house movie in a white tank top. It’s a fairly inventive little trailer, though, with some creepy images and neat tricks built in. That said, we’re wondering if the jangled chronology is just for the trailer, or part of the film itself; all that backwards stuff could get irritating if stretched out over an entire feature.

The Giant Mechanical Man

Jenna Fischer, Chris Messina, Malin Akerman, Bob Odenkirk, Lucy Punch, Topher Grace, Harry Crane from Mad Men — Lee Kirk’s indie rom-com has an ensemble cast so stellar, so solid, that we’re almost willing to overlook the fact that we could probably walk through the entire film, beat by beat, based on this trailer. Still, we don’t go to romantic comedies for shock and surprise; we go for the laughs and the charm, which this group has in spades.

Free Samples

Jess Weixler is an actor we were expecting to hear more from after her breakthrough role in Teeth a few years back — though, in all fairness, that film was probably more of an acquired taste. (Go look it up. We’ll wait.) She’s a genuinely interesting performer, with a gift for investing seemingly insane situations with a down-to-earth believability, so it’s good to see her making some waves again; she was terrific in the SXSW film Somebody Up There Likes Me, and here’s her next film, which is playing at Tribeca. Sure, it looks a touch on the precious side, but we’ll go along with it, and it’s nice to see “Academy Award nominee Jesse Eisenberg” keepin’ it real in a little indie flick.

The Fourth Dimension

There are three types of filmgoers: those who don’t know who Harmony Korine is, those who think he’s a visionary genius, and those who would rather get run over by a truck than watch another of his preening, self-indulgent messes. Your author is squarely positioned in the third camp — and yet, I’m intrigued by this utterly oddball trailer for a three-part anthology film featuring contributions by Korine, Russian filmmaker Alexsei Fedorchenko, and Polish-born Jan Kwiecinski. Maybe it’s just my weakness for trailers that get your attention but don’t tell you anything; maybe, in this case, there’s nothing to tell. But when the Tribeca Film Festival comes to town next month, I’ll be seeing a film that Harmony Korine was involved in, and that’s something I never saw coming.

Sleepless Night

Nothing’s more fun than when a foreign filmmaker shakes up the tired old conventions of the American action film with a shot of fresh energy — that’s what Tom Tykwer did over a decade ago in Run Lola Run, that’s what Gareth Evans did more recently in The Raid, and by all reports, that’s what French director Frédéric Jardin does in this action extravaganza, which wowed audiences at Toronto and Fantastic Fest. As is often the case with foreign films pitched at mainstream American audiences, the voice-over is unbearably corny. But we’re very excited to see exactly what “Die Hard meets 24 by way of Taken” looks like.

Safety Not Guaranteed

One of our favorites of Sundance and SXSW finally gets a trailer, so you can see what we’ve been raving about. And this is a good, solid promo: it sells the premise, puts in a few of the jokes (that grocery store scene only gets better), and hints at the pathos without giving up the whole movie, which is sweet and sharp and just plain wonderful.