There’s something about June. No, not a sequel to There’s Something About Mary, which will probably appear in two to three years when Ben Stiller and Cameron Diaz have finally squandered all public goodwill on unwatchable rom-coms, but there’s actually something about the month of June. It’s when the weather normally transitions from utterly miserable to just about bearable in this country, and it feels just that fraction more wasteful to be spending the few sunny days that we have inside a dark room full of seats and a big screen, even if it is air conditioned. (Watch now, as I have probably jinxed the whole thing and condemned the country to thirty days of storms.)
So it does feel that films released in June somehow have to make just a little more effort. It’s normally the lull in Blockbuster Season, which kicks off in May and is now biding its time until the onslaught of spider-men, ice ages and men with pointy helmets clogging up multiplexes everywhere in July. Now, June might also be the month this year that Prometheus has been unleashed upon the world, but if there’s anyone not utterly worn out by the endless procession of marketing which has both raised and unfairly directed expectations for the film itself, then you’re a hardier character than I am.
But my selections for June still have plenty of variety – there might not be space aliens or men dressed as bats, there are black and white horses, a freakish looking hedgehog, a stovepipe hat and R-Patz himself. If that’s not value for money, I don’t know what is.
The Turin Horse
Managing to best even Ridley Scott’s impressive visuals, the most striking trailer of the month features is supposedly the last feature from Hungarian director Bela Tarr, and if you’ve ever seen any of his previous work in a cinema, award yourself ten bonus points. In the year when a black and white film walked off with the Best Picture Oscar, there’s never been a better time to get your black and white horse film into distribution. Anyone with black and white meerkat films in the pipeline, you’d better get a wriggle on, these fads never last long.
A Fantastic Fear Of Everything
My attraction to this film has become somewhat perverse, as the word of mouth from those I know on Twitter that have seen it is astonishingly bad in the main. I don’t know what compels us as humans to look at the accident on the other side of the carriageway as we’re driving past, but that same instinct is driving me to understand what the bloke from Kula Shaker and the guy with red on him have managed to cook up. Ideally, the more awful, the better.
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
I’ve seen this trailer twice now in cinemas, and both times it elicited an identical response. People seem generally interested in the setting, there’s the usual buzz and background murmuring, the odd bit of excitement as the trailer ramps up towards the end… and then the title card reveals itself, and when the words “Abraham Lincoln” and “Vampire Hunter” appear on screen, there’s a lot burst of incredulous disbelief, as several hundred people who hadn’t heard about this (and who still laugh at the Orange mobile ad every single time) go “WTF?” as one voice. Oddly satisfying.
I discussed my formative experiences with David Cronenberg a few months back, and ever since the first time I saw The Fly Cronenberg has been on my list of directors who simply need to make a film and I’ll be there. His last couple have been good without being great, and apart from a naked fight and Keira Knightley’s impersonation of the Giger alien downhill skiing they had nothing to really make them stand out. This looks satisfyingly like a return to crazy, ideas filled, off-the-wall Videodrome-era Cronenberg, and that makes me very happy. Kristen Stewart hasn’t yet risen above her Twilight role, despite getting all shouty in Snow White and the Huntsman, so let’s hope Robert Pattinson gets more to do here.
I was going to put Polisse in here, but couldn’t think of a single thing to say about the trailer. Sure, it looks good and all, but… So at the last minute I swapped it out for this one instead, the latest from William Friedkin, with a great big NC-17 warning on the front of the trailer. That kind of insane last-minute decision making is just the way I roll.
You wait ages for a film about Le Havre, then two come along at once. In case you missed it, the other one was called Le Havre. Bit of a giveaway in the title, there. This one also notable for the horrified reactions in the YouTube comments sections of those who’d seen it, and obviously aren’t in the target demographic.