Trailer Mash

The latest 'Mission: Impossible' and 'Sherlock Holmes' films clash in our weekly look at opening movies

In a trailer that looks more like a YouTube tribute video, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol takes all your favorite stunts from 15 years of Mission: Impossible flicks and ramps them so far up the redonkulous scale that it weakens your brain to watch them. Remember how MI2 opens with Tom clinging by his fingertips to the side of the Paramount mountain? Then on the Petronas Towers? This time it's the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. Remember the Motorbike Fu in 2? Now there's Car Fu.* Remember how Tom rode the explosion blast wave on the Eurostar in MI1? Then on a bridge in MI3? This time it's from the explosion that destroys the bloody Kremlin. Remember Emmanuelle Béart? Now there's Jeremy Renner. *With grateful thanks to Joe Bob Bridges for the portmanteau phrase "'Your Noun Here' Fu."

Before you watch the trailer for the new Robert Downey Jr. Sherlock Holmes movie, close your eyes and imagine how director Guy Ritchie might up the ante after the success of his earlier steampunked version. Yet more over-cranked hi-octane action that suddenly shifts to slo-mo? Downey in a dress? Moriarty in mutton chops? A corset-clad female worthy of Holmes played by a fashionable European actress? No shit, Sherlock. The real mystery is where Kelly Reilly, returning as Mrs. Watson for less than one second of this trailer, has been hiding since last time.

Roger Corman figured out early on that for a cheap thrill, American audiences will merrily overlook cheap production values. As though involved in some academic study, he has never lost money proving this thesis over and over again. Over those years, Corman also became a one-man film school for half of American cinema. And "by mistake he actually made a good picture once in a while," as Jack Nicholson puts it in one of a myriad of great one-liners that pepper this trailer for Corman's World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel.

The best thing that may be said of this teaser for Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-Wrecked is that it's duration is less than the length of time it takes to read this sentence, should you choose to do so in the voice of Alec Guinness after a large gin.

Since his mesmerizing, Oscar-winning Hollywood debut in Quentin Tarantino's otherwise hideously overrated Inglourious Basterds, Christoph Waltz has failed to set international cinema alight. The Green Hornet and Water for Elephants will not feature big in his obituary. But in this trailer for what is essentially a play on film, he is a hoot as Kate Winslet's husband alongside John C. Reilly and Jodie Foster as the other couple involved in some hilariously escalating argument about their kids. Waltz's Hollywood career may so far be carnage, but Carnage may save his Hollywood career, oh yes, at least according to this trailer.