Is this the 13 Hours / 13 Ghosts mash-up we’ve been waiting for?
Netflix has already established itself as a home to original series that succeed both critically and commercially, and they’ve been making strides towards duplicating that success with original movies. It’s a tougher game though with feature films as they lack the ability to draw viewers back for a next episode or season and instead exist as a one-off experiences.
That means the key to becoming a home for original movies that people return to again and again comes down to two factors: quality and variety.
Quality is a new challenge each and every time as some movies have it (Beasts of No Nation, 13th) and others are Happy Madison productions, and with that in mind it falls to variety to draw viewers back. It’s clear that Netflix knows this, and it’s nowhere more evident than in their upcoming slate of genre titles including IO, Wheelman, Bong Joon-ho’s Okja, and the soldiers vs ghosts thriller, Spectral.
Check out the first trailer for Spectral below.
If the premise of pitting modern-day military dudes against supernatural forces isn’t enough for you – well that’s on you – then you have to at least be sold on this cast. Bruce Greenwood, James Badge Dale, Max Martini, and Emily Mortimer are all terrific character actors, and dropping them into what amounts to a Michael Bay horror movie is just icing on the bullet and ectoplasm-covered cake.
Director Nic Mathieu’s feature debut was originally scheduled for a theatrical release before being pulled by Universal Pictures and scooped up by Netflix. Four writers are listed for the film, but while that’s rarely a good sign a closer look at three of their filmographies leaves me both hopeful and excited – George Nolfi (The Bourne Ultimatum, The Adjustment Bureau), John Gatins (Hardball, Real Steel, Kong: Skull Island), Jamie Moss (Street Kings motherfuckers!).
The trailer teases more of a dark and gritty thriller than simply Ghostbusters with a body-count, but I’m completely down for a deadly serious action romp featuring soldiers shooting ghosts. It’s pretty much impossible for me not to be.
Spectral premieres on Netflix worldwide on December 9th.