Well, neither The Magnificent Seven nor Storks could maintain their placement at the box office. Both were dethroned by Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children and Deepwater Horizon respectively. I'm most curious how recent controversy over comments made by Tim Burton affects the audience draw to Miss Peregrine. I just noticed that my hopeful Queen of Katwe has only made just over 2.5M$, which is a shame. Still looking forward to see it.

Now that I've finally caught up on trailers for movies coming out over the next couple of weeks, I'm actually able to share some newer trailers released this past month. Perhaps you missed some...

Arrival (11/11/2016):

Arrival looks like a very interesting "first contact" movie. At first I thought it was potentially a remake of The Arrival, starring Charlie Sheen, but it isn't. In the trailer we are basically shown the beginning stages of attempting to communicate with the alien race; the purpose of their visit, hostile or benevolent. Then there is a steady progression of clips explaining more details about the movie's plot. It's fairly well done, to be honest, I was afraid it may give away way too much information. I may have left out the fact that other UFOs arrive as well, but that may be revealed in the film from the get-go.

I think this movie looks great and I like many of the actors involved in the project which includes Amy Adams (Lullaby, Her), Jeremy Renner (The Immigrant, The Town), and Forest Whitaker (Southpaw, Taken 3). It will be nice to get some more of these sci-fi movies which are more slow burning and cerebral like Interstellar. I'm hoping another trailer in this entry proves to offer the same. As for Arrival, I'd be interested in seeing it in theaters.

Collateral Beauty (12/16/2016):

It's possible Will Smith (Winter's Tale, Seven Pounds) is making a successful comeback. I felt he dropped off the radar for a long while and/or made some bad project choices. Following along the lines of Concussion, I wonder if this film could make him an Emmy contender. Either way, this looks like a very powerful, emotional movie.

The acting and chemistry between the cast looks great, which will be important when it comes to tackling many of these life concepts binding us all; Love (played by Keira Knightley — Begin Again, Last Night), Time (played by Jacob Latimore — Ride Along, Vanishing on 7th Street), and Death (played by Helen Mirren — The Door, Arthur). Also starring in Collateral Beauty is Kate Winslet (Labor Day, Contagion), Edward Norton (Stone, Leaves of Grass), Naomie Harris (Spectre, Skyfall), and Michael Pena (The Martian, Ant-Man). This movie is sure to tug on those heartstrings, so best be prepared!

Passengers (12/21/2016):

The other sci-fi film I referenced above coming out this year, this one starring Jennifer Lawrence (The Devil You Know, House at the End of the Street) and Chris Pratt (Her, Movie 43). Where Arrival deals with the drama of coming into contact with aliens for the first time, Passengers focuses on a duo who are woken up prematurely from a deep sleep while in route to a new colonization program. The two of them have to figure out how to survive the rest of their days on the ship, as there is no way to place themselves back into deep sleep. To make matters worse, it looks like that are on a collision course with a sun.

While I do think the trailer begins to show a little too much of the movie's storyline, it does do a very good job at slowly revealing it. From where it's discovered they aren't on Earth, being woken from deep sleep, and ultimately that the entire safety of the ship and its sleeping inhabitants are in grave danger. Unfortunately, that's likely exactly how the movie progresses along as well. Hopefully they haven't shown all the way to the very end of the movie, where we catch glimpses of supporting cast Andy Garcia (Let's Be Cops, Rob the Mob) and Laurence Fishburne (Standoff, The Signal). Passengers also stars Michael Sheen (Masters of Sex, Kill the Messenger).

Fifty Shades Darker (2/10/2017):

I never jumped on the whole Fifty Shades of Grey bandwagon, but it was certainly a wide-sweeping bookselling phenomenon. When the movie came out, it seems to spawn a bunch of negative flack about the interpretation of its actual content. Assertions that it wasn't accurately representative of the BDSM lifestyle and portrayed a seriously dysfunctional, abusive relationship. Not only portrayed, but sensationalized. I'm very unfamiliar with the source material, so I've no real clue how true that all is. And I also wonder just how much it differs from many other popular books, movies, TV Shows, etc. I know it was enough to send rumors that the movie franchise would be halted.

Looks like the rumors were false! I only know a few people who saw the first movie, but they seemed to enjoy it. This movie looks to offer much more of the same. Except I'm not sure how keen I am at the supposed spirit/haunting aspect they seem to hint at in the trailer? Maybe it's in the books or it's misrepresented in the trailer? Not sure. This sequel sees Jamie Dornan (Shadows in the Sun, Marie Antoinette) and Dakota Johnson (Goats, Beastly) joined by Tyler Hoechlin (Teen Wolf, Hall Pass), Kim Basinger (Cellular, Batman), and Luke Grimes (American Sniper, Taken 2).

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (Changed to Salazar's Revenge?) - Teaser Trailer (5/27/2017):

I still love the original Pirates of the Caribbean movie. It's a movie I can watch multiple times and enjoy, not getting sick of it. I found it odd that it was based on a theme park and not vice versa, but I felt Johnny Depp (Chocolat, Sleepy Hollow), Orlando Bloom (Kingdom of Heaven, Troy), and Keira Knightley (Pure, Innocent Lies) — along with director Gore Verbinski (Rango, The Ring) — did an amazing job at bringing the world to life and the chemistry among them and the supporting cast (especially Geoffrey Rush — The Book Thief, The King's Speech) solidified the movie into the hearts of many children and adults alike.

The second installment wasn't terrible, but by the third I was disenchanted with the franchise. I had hopes that the fourth movie On Stranger Tides would revamp that love for the series, but honestly, I skipped seeing it. They've all had amazing trailers, and Salazar's Revenge is no different, but I'm extremely hesitant to give it a chance. Maybe because I will feel compelled to watch the entire series beforehand, which may be too painful for my tender, Jack Sparrow lovelorn heart. Even with much of the cast reprising their roles (the most surprising being Bloom, who I believe was absent from the last movie). Even with the addition of Javier Bardem (Eat Pray Love, No Country for Old Men) to the cast.

I may have to sit this one out and just wait for reviews. I'm that gun-shy about it.

On a side note, I worry Bardem may be heckled similar to Tom Hardy's portrayal of Bane in The Dark Knight Rises, being he is so hard to understand. At least for me. Then there's the whole Depp domestic abuse controversy that may or may not hinder his career... We'll see!

Did any of the featured movies interest you? Do you think the aliens visiting in Arrival come in peace, or have a nefarious agenda? What would you do if an alien race revealed itself to us? Do you feel that Will Smith is making a strong comeback? What are your thoughts on how the concepts of Love, Time, and Death connect us all? Do you think the Passengers trailer revealed too much of the movie's plot? Would you give up your life on Earth to begin anew in another colony on another planet? Are you a fan of the Fifty Shades of Grey book series? Do you feel the movie adaptations have been doing the source material justice? Which of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies is your favorite, if any, and why? Did you have as hard of a time understanding Captain Salazar in the teaser trailer as I did?!