Styles is missing in action in the trailer. But so is most of the cast.
Instead, the new one-minute teaser sets the tone for the movie with enigmatic scenes suggesting the calm before the storm.
The clip ends with a group of cowering British soldiers, who are about to come under aerial attack, symbolized by the whistling of dive bombers.
“At the point of crisis, at the point of annihilation, survival is victory,” the screen reads.
Why Nolan cast Styles in the first place is a mystery. He may want someone to bait millennials into seeing the film, given their detachment from the material.
Dunkirk took place 76 years ago during World War II. The film focuses on the evacuation of more than 330,000 British troops from France in the face of the Nazi onslaught. The film has no U.S. angle, since U.S. troops were not involved.
Nolan also has kept under wraps Styles’ screen time and whether he’ll even have a speaking part. We do know he plays a soldier.
The film’s lead actors are Fionn Whitehead, Tom Hardy, Kenneth Branagh, Mark Rylance, Jack Lowden and Aneurin Barnard.
The Dunkirk evacuation was also the subject of a 1958 picture by the same name. Leslie Norman directed the British production, which starred John Mills, Richard Attenborough and Bernard Lee.
In perhaps a harbinger of the fate awaiting Nolan’s film, the 1958 version was a box office hit in Great Britain and Europe, but flopped in the United States.
Nolan must know he’ll never be considered a great director until he makes a war movie like Oliver Stone (“Platoon”) and Steven Spielberg (“Saving Private Ryan”).
Still, it’s probably shrewd to have someone like Styles in the cast. Consider it a form of insurance.
Check out the teaser below. The film debuts in July 2017.
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