While Paul Greengrass essentially changed the visual language of action movie filmmaking with his entries into the original Bourne trilogy (Supremacy and Ultimatum)— some would argue for the worse, helping popularize the dreaded "shaky cam" — his roots have always been in harrowing docudrama chronicles of terrorism. Stretching all the way back to Bloody Sunday (which depicts the '72 shootings in Derry, Ireland) and The Murder of Stephen Lawrence (centered on the titular racially motivated slaying in Britain), Greengrass has made a career out of dramatizing some of the worst chapters in modern history.
Since bringing his style to America, Greengrass has helmed a pair of hijackings: United 93 — the absolutely heartwrenching account of the doomed September 11 flight — and Captain Phillips (which contains a career best performance from Tom Hanks). Now, the UK maverick has turned to Netflix to help bring 22 July to life, and it looks to be every bit as harrowing as the pictures listed above.
22 July is a recreation of the '11 Norway attacks — during which right-wing terrorist Anders Behring Breivik murdered 77 people — and the first trailer for the film promises all of the day's horror has been captured with Greengrass' unflinching attention to detail.
Take a look:
That's about what we expected, though I was surprised that the picture was shot in English (given it was filmed on location primarily with actors hailing from that country). This isn't a knock on the movie, mind you - as it appears to be just as tense as the rest of Greengrass' output - more of a passive observation. Netflix has been giving out bundles of money to filmmakers so that they can enact their personal visions, but they also purchased this movie and didn't directly fund it (which could account for the creative decision being more commercially-minded).
Anyway, 22 July debuts at the Venice Film Festival this week, before Netflix drops it on their service October 10th. We'll definitely have more for you then.