Listen, I wanted to be down with the new “Annie” remake. I like Quvenzhané Wallis — who doesn't? I like Cameron Diaz, too — especially in vampy, unhinged mode. (Say what you will about “The Counselor,” but she's going for broke in it.) Casting her as Miss Hannigan made so little ostensible sense that you figured there had to be some secret, counter-intuitive payoff there. And director Will Gluck made “Easy A,” so at least the man knows sparky. (“Friends With Benefits,” not so much, but forgive, forget, etc.) And finally, nostalgists may wince, but John Huston's 1982 “Annie” is kind of a bloated, out-of-its-time relic — there's ample room for improvement there.
But this… this. It's only a trailer, so I don't wish to leap to any conclusions, but let's just say that Huston's film also left ample room for deterioration, and Gluck appears to be exploring those options. Stylized performances can suffer in teaser format, so maybe whatever Diaz is trying makes some sense in context; it certainly doesn't here. (Nice escape there, Ms. Bullock.) But the edit can't be misleading us too drastically about the cheap-looking design and shonky framing, while every sample provided of the script's 21st-century updates sounds off-key. We'll see. For now, however, the words “This Christmas” sound distinctly like a threat for Columbia's planned holiday release. Hey, there's always the Golden Globes.
Do you hold out any hope for the new “Annie?” Watch the trailer and share your thoughts in the comments.