Marc Bernardin
October 06, 2006 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Why wait to review the movies when we can grade the teasers?

Harsh Times
Two guys are driving through L.A. in a big sedan, beers in hand. One (Christian Bale) is a stone killer, while the other (Freddy Rodriguez) is trying to find his way. Smells like Training Day…and the lack of freshness doesn’t help it stand out. C+

This movie will have to go a long way to convince audiences it’s more than a Lord of the Rings clone or, worse, a Dragonheart sequel. But the beastie looks good, and having Jeremy Irons’ wearily aristocratic voice dripping all over definitely helps. B

The Good Shepherd
Everyone looks very serious here, from Matt Damon to Angelina Jolie to William Hurt. And they should, since this Robert De Niro-directed flick is about the birth of the CIA. But the proceedings look so grim, it feels a little like homework. B

Since there’s no dialogue, this trailer — featuring Mayans going to war — plays like a silent film, one with a really overactive score. And lots of violence. And people painted in that Braveheart blue. Intriguing, I’ll say that. B+

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