Someone complained about the number of trailer writeups on this site, and I’m SORRY, but today is NOT helping. It’s not my fault! I mean, I have editorial control today, so it IS, but also, a million trailers dropped at once and I am FIGHTING for my LIFE. 


And in my defense, when I choose to cover a trailer, it’s because I have something specific to say in a larger context, like whether or not the binge model is best serving The Bear. Which is why I’m skipping the full trailer for Kinds of Kindness. It looks weird and I’m into it, and the only thing I have to add beyond what I said about the teaser is that the full trailer is giving more obviously f-cked up vibes. But it’s Yorgos Lanthimos, f-cked up is his bread and butter. Also, there’s a teaser for Moana 2. It looks like a Disney movie! 


But another trailer I DO want to talk about is for Wolfs, from filmmaker Jon Watts of Spider-Man fame, starring George Clooney and Brad Pitt as a pair of fixers reluctantly forced to work together. Lainey compared it to Mr. & Mrs. Smith, which is ironic, and the trailer, at least, is trading on Ocean’s 11 nostalgia with the cool guy crime vibes and the Sinatra of it all. Some people will watch this and carry on blithely, but for some us, it’s a reminder that Brad Pitt got Hollywood in the divorce, and this is why no matter what comes out of his many lawsuits happening on multiple continents, none of it will ever stick as long as he has the support of people like Clooney (and Ryan Reynolds, who featured him in Deadpool 2, and John Krasinski, who used his name as a credits joke in IF). 


I’m also scrutinizing Wolfs because it comes from Apple Original Films, the film division of Apple TV+. Apple, like Amazon, is one of the only streamers that is willing to give their movies proper theatrical releases, though after the rough run of Killers of the Flower Moon, Napoleon, and especially Argylle, they’re losing more than they’re winning. Allegedly, they’re happy with Killers and Napoleon which performed well in their second lives as premium digital rentals and their third lives as streaming exclusives. (Not for nothing, this is a good path for a film in the streaming age, to have a decent theatrical release followed by PVOD exclusivity and then, months later, streaming for “free” on the app.) Argylle, though, is an unmitigated disaster.


So what does that mean for films like Wolfs? Well, for now, Apple is still willing to give filmmakers real money to make movies with real stars which they will then put into theaters in a healthy wide release. But you wonder how long they’ll tolerate losses. Even though Apple, more than anyone, can absorb those losses, enough red on the spreadsheet makes everyone sad. With Pitt and Clooney, Wolfs SHOULD be a movie that can put butts in seats, but who even knows anymore. Movie Stars still matter—John Wick would not have blown up like it did without Keanu Reeves—but audiences are also fickler than ever. Or rather, more squeezed—for money, time, and a good experience. Once upon a time, Wolfs would be a $100 million no brainer, but now? I guess we’ll find out in September.