Halftime Leisure

Trailer Takes: Enola Holmes, She’s in Portland, Alone

September 18, 2020


Illustration by Egan Barnitt

Trailer 1 — She’s In Portland (2020)

Sophie: This movie feels so familiar and ordinary that it could have come from any script at a random Starbucks in Los Angeles. Two friends go on a road trip that will ultimately help them discover more about each other and themselves—definitely an overused storyline in Hollywood. I will say that the problem with this trailer is the dull plot, not the production of the film. After seeing the clips, I am fairly confident that the film will be visually gorgeous and aesthetic.

John: I’m definitely getting feel-good rom-com vibes from this one, although, given some of the scenes showcased here, I imagine that it’ll have some pretty low emotional valleys. The dialogue seems well written, though nothing outstanding, and the visuals were kind of engaging. All that I can say is that it hits all the beats—road trip, party in a faraway city, reuniting with the girl who got away—and maybe that’s all the movie really needs or is going for. I don’t think it’s really for me, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be an alright release.  

Anshu: While the trailer didn’t convince me that the movie is going to be any sort of ingenious, avant-garde masterwork, I don’t think that the movie really strives to be that. The road-trip self-discovery plotline is simple enough, and the hazy glow of sunlit scenes creates a relaxed, feel-good ambiance. And honestly, I think that’s all the trailer promises: a movie that lets you escape from your own life and feel like you’re going on a road-trip across a gorgeous coastline while experiencing various absurd and carefree encounters. I will say though, that I have a strong feeling that this movie doesn’t do much for the portrayal of women. The “she” that the title alludes to seems to be yet another instance of a grown man romanticizing the whole manic pixie dream girl ideal, and reducing her down to someone who can save him because of that. But I suppose we’ll see; maybe it’s just that the trailer doesn’t do a good enough job at portraying the women, and the movie will surprise us. 

Trailer 2 — Alone (2020)

Sophie: I honestly feel bad for everyone who worked on this film because the social distancing and physical isolation that is portrayed in the trailer is so relatable to Coronavirus that it will overshadow the actual film. However, I was more struck by the fact that President Snow from The Hunger Games (Donald Sutherland) and the werewolf from Teen Wolf (Tyler Posey) were starring in the same film. The 2013 version of myself that binge-watched MTV shows and was firmly team Peeta would be beside herself. Additionally, I am excited to see how they approach the psychological strain of an individual who has not only been isolated, but required to kill to stay alive could separate it from the average archetype of zombie-esque horror movies. Who knows if they will thoughtfully address this, but it makes the trailer stand out from a crowded genre. I am hopeful that this movie will be more edgy and ambiguous than other horror movies. 

John: “It’s been 42 days, I’ve been alone the whole time. I’m losing my mind.” Thanks Tyler Posey, as if we really needed to hear that right now. Trendy coronavirus commentary aside, this one did not grip me one bit. I was never a zombie person to begin with—in my opinion the whole genre has been saturated since at least 2010 when The Walking Dead completely flooded the film and games industries with gross-out undead plots—but maybe you are and can get something from this. As for me, I’ll continue trudging through 2020 without watching more apocalypse-centric media, thank you very much.

Anshu: Another zombie survival movie, but this one’s got Tyler Posey! At first glance, it didn’t look any different from the usual suspects in this heavily-explored genre. The plot seems to be somewhat run-of-the-mill based on the trailer, but I think the best thing to hope for in a zombie flick is that it isn’t poorly made, in terms of the special effects, particularly. And, honestly, I definitely don’t think this movie has that issue. The trailer was more memorable than those for other zombie movies in my experience, and, for me, that’s a big plus. I think there’s a decent amount of potential here for it to be an entertaining experience, specifically in terms of the possible directions that the film can be taken given the many distinct relationships.  I feel like there’s more than meets the eye here, and I’m curious to see if the movie will try something unique.

Trailer 3 — Enola Holmes (2020)

Sophie: Can I just say that I absolutely love character names that actually have significance and also create another layer to the plot? While the significance of Enola was given away within the first 10 seconds of the trailer by none other than Millie Bobby Brown herself, I am excited to see how this titular role will showcase Brown’s talent—especially since this character is such a change of pace from her reserved, quiet Eleven. Her fourth wall breaks and witty commentary give me early 2000s teen movies vibes which will either make the film super lovable or stale. Fingers crossed it is the former because the idea of a well-executed female lead who kicks butt—physically and mentally—might just make me quit Georgetown and join a detective agency. 

John: This trailer sold me on the film. I didn’t know that I needed a film about the fourth-wall-breaking, quippy, melee-fighting, badass younger sister of Sherlock Holmes (Henry Cavil), but now that it’s here, it’s all I want to watch. This is sure to be a fun romp, and period dramas with wacky premises are a surefire way to line up some quality comedy. While Millie Bobby Brown is unquestionably the star of the show here and her performance looks like it will be a ton of fun, I do have a side note: Henry Cavil as Sherlock. Did I see it coming? No. Am I here for it? Indeed I am. Anyway, that’s all that really needs to be said about the film: the writing seems fantastic, the editing seems snappy, and Brown’s performance looks like it’ll be right on point. 

Anshu: I got major Fleabag vibes in terms of the fourth wall breaks and Millie Bobby Brown’s cheekiness, which makes sense, since the director, Harry Bradbeer, worked on both. Of course, Enola lacks Fleabag’s self-destructive and nihilistic traits, but that is surely for the best. There’s a time and a place for that. But anyway, I digress. The first thing I gathered from the trailer was the emphasis on Enola’s (and frankly, Brown’s own) vibrancy and wit as a vehicle for elevating the plot and capturing the audience. And of course, the charming ensemble cast doesn’t hurt either. Most importantly, it’ll be interesting to see if the plot makes the movie memorable enough to potentially warrant a series, like the books it is based on, or if they end up relying too heavily on the strength of the cast that other aspects fall short. Strongly hoping for the former, because we could all use a bit more Millie Bobby Brown content in our lives.


Anshu More
Anshu is a senior in the MSB who most notably loves Frank Ocean and cut her own bangs in quarantine.

John Woolley
is a junior in the college studying government and journalism, and is Leisure Executive. He is a writer, musician, and wants you to know that Luigi is the superior Mario brother.


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