The first trailer for Ramin Bahrani’s 99 Homes, starring Andrew Garfield and Michael Shannon has been released. The film tackles the harsh pitfalls of the post-recession housing crisis.
Andrew Garfield, who was sorely missed in a solid dramatic role while he was playing Spider-Man (brilliantly), makes a welcome return to playing the kinds of characters he embodies so effortlessly. He delivered stunning performances in Boy A, Never Let Me Go and The Social Network.
He plays a struggling family man in 99 Homes, with a young child and wife (Laura Dern). After getting evicted from his home by the always electric Michael Shannon, he is forced to go to work for him in his corrupt operations, only to be sucked in deep. Without a means of escape, he begins a Walter White (Breaking Bad) like rise to the top, a mild mannered man turning into what he fears the most.
The trailer, despite hitting some effective dramatic beats, makes the same mistake a lot of trailers make. Afraid to not seem attractive enough, the marketing department has essentially laid out most of the major plot points from the film. Twists that would have elevated an already thrilling story have probably deflated it.
Bahrani’s film, like The Company Men, Too Big to Fail and Margin Call, tries to make sense of the economic collapse, with characters who have suffered the worst attempting to make better lives in a country that has seemingly forgotten them. ‘What did you think it was going to mean, working for a man like me’, snarls Michael Shannon’s psychopathic real estate broker. We sense a man broken by the recession.
Bahrani, born to Iranian parents in North Carolina, arrived on the scene in grand fashion with his debut film Man Push Cart, a deeply humanistic portrayal of a Pakistani man trying to make a living in New York City. Evoking the realism of Vittorio De Sica and his contemporaries, Bahrani’s films have all been acclaimed. Legendary critic Roger Ebert even declared him ‘the director of the decade’. 99 Homes, like his previous film At Any Price, starring Zac Efron debuted in completion at Venice.
‘America was built by bailing out winners; by rigging a nation of the winners, for the winners, by the winners’, declares Shannon. When a man’s survival is on the line, all bets are off.99 Homes stars Andrew Garfield, Michael Shannon and Laura Dern. It is directed by Ramin Bahrani and produced by Ashok Amritraj. Expect it to arrive in theatres on September 25.