FIRST REFORMED Trailer
In First Reformed, a former military chaplain is wracked by grief over the death of his son. Mary is a member of his church whose husband, a radical environmentalist, commits suicide, setting the plot in motion.
Writer/director Paul Schrader returns to familiar territory with First Reformed, again using a troubled man as a way to examine troubled times.
It’s an approach he’s applied to several different time periods, most notably in his screenplays for Taxi Driver and Raging Bull, but here he’s taking on the present-day worries of religious and political violence. The wars, economic depression, and cultural strife that has arisen over the last couple decades has rooted itself deeply in American culture, making it unsurprising that Schrader has been drawn back to grand examinations of their cause and effect.
The film centers on a grieving chaplain played by Ethan Hawke, who in addition to struggling with the death of his son must counsel an alarming young couple. The pair have some extreme views and are willing to aggressively challenge those who disagree with them, bringing to the chaplain’s town the dangers that have grown more prevalent in the wider world.
With the trailer referencing Hawke’s character keeping a journal for one year, it appears that this story will have a ticking clock of sorts, slowly ratcheting up fear and distress into peaks like those seen in Schrader’s previous work. Given the writer/director’s experienced hand at this sort of story, First Reformed will almost certainly be one to see.
First Reformed is directed by Paul Schrader and stars Ethan Hawke, Amanda Seyfried, and Cedric Kyles. It will be released in the US on May 18th, 2018. Further release dates are not currently known.
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Read our SXSW review of First Reformed here.
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