Robert: So I remember seeing the first teaser image for Pixels and it was nothing more than a main cast line-up: Michelle Monaghan, Adam Sandler, Josh Gad, and Peter Dinklage and just that left me… intrigued. This isn’t one of those movies that I’m gonna be first in line for by any means, but the premise and the presence of Gad and Dinklage in lieu of Happy Madison (Sandler’s production company) regulars have me holding out for something better than what we’ve maybe come to expect. In just the trailer alone, the VFX are actually looking pretty solid and, while the trailer is currently just a spoon-fed plot, the Pac-Man scene at the end is pretty entertaining and I want to see more!
Becky: When I saw the announcement for this movie, I was actually really excited because I am a huge video game fan and have a special place in my heart for retro video games from my youth. Even the first few seconds of the trailer had me on the edge of my seat, but left me wanting anything but what I was seeing as soon as the cast came on screen. This movie had so much potential and even though I’m a fan of most of the cast, especially Peter Dinklage, Josh Gad and Sean Bean, I wasn’t seeing a parody-like feeling or even a good script in the preview. I either was hoping they would go super parody like Knights of Badassery or super serious like Pacific Rim -- I’m just hoping the actual movie is better than the first preview we were treated to. That being said, I will see it, just not in theaters -- I’d say a Netflix pick.
Robert: I think what we’re looking at with Pixels could also be an, albeit sorry, attempt at getting at that silly, but intense action tone we saw with Guardians Of The Galaxy. I know actors aren’t usually the ones that “save” bad movies, but as far as I can see Adam Sandler and Kevin James are the only real bad apples in the bunch, so I’m fingers-crossed that the supporting cast will lift them up and help craft some genuinely funny humor and physical comedy. The action is the other things that’s still keeping me from counting the film totally out of the realm of theater possibility; hopefully the variation in huge pixelated set pieces will keep the action moving and interesting, while lacing together some hopefully funny back and forth between the characters. We’re also looking at probably not totally homogenized characters like we usually get in Adam Sandler flicks, so not the straight and white deadbeat bros, but a bunch of geeks instead - so I think it’s safe to bet that that contrast will also make for some interesting (long shot, but also not overly pointed and generic) banter (at least I hope).
Becky: I’m not sure, Robert. I really hope you are right, but it really seems like a Grown Ups 2 again and that is something I didn’t even bother to see. But, I’m totally with you on the pixelated set pieces having real character and VFX that convinces you they are real, that part I’m just dying to see how they pull it off. I’m hoping we can see some strong female characters in this film as I know several female comedians/actors that would be perfect here, though I’m sure that Jane Krakowski will give us some lines reminiscent of her character Jenna Maroney (30 Rock). Only time will tell if this will be a good film, and I’m hoping they will release more than just one trailer so we all can more accurately gauge what it is really going to be like.
Robert: I would be quite keen to see a more extended look before the movie comes out - that’s another thing that makes me a little optimistic about Pixels: the marketing so far, or generally the fact that there’s been marketing at all. It’s not like Adam Sandler is still the hot 90’s comedy powerhouse he used to be, his last couple films have all been real stinkers. Usually with a bomb that the studio knows is a bomb, they’re SUPER careful about what they let out and the released trailer looks OK but like there could be more to the film than many could think. Which is EXACTLY what that first Guardians trailer did. It looked off the wall and people didn’t really know what to think of it, and then it came through. Who knows, maybe after this summer we’ll be pleasantly surprised and we’ll have another crazy runaway 80’s action throwback comedy success. Or we’ll have a mediocre team comedy with a cool video game fight or two. Only time will tell.
Becky: Thanks for holding out optimism and hope for this movie, Robert. I wont be a total movie grump and critic until I’ve actually seen it, but I’m not getting super pumped for this film until I see more. The one part of the movie that I am looking forward to is Peter Dinklage’s parts as he has never failed to make me laugh in any number of his comedic roles including Death at a Funeral, Knights of Badassdom, and his guest appearance on Saturday Night Live a few years ago. With the cast of this film is showing off some big names, I’m hoping a good performance is in play, but I’m siding more with the idea that it is going to be a mediocre team comedy with a few video game references thrown in for nostalgias sake.
Which Fanpup contributor do you agree with? Let us know in the comments below what you think of Pixels and our assessment of it below, and bonus points if you can name all the video game references in the trailer.