As we slow down in our old age, we begin to ask questions about our passions – of what continues to drive us forward. Paolo Sorrentino’s (The Great Beauty) upcoming film seems to answer those questions.
Fox Searchlight has just released the pathos drenched trailer for Sorrentino’s film Youth, starring Oscar-winner Michael Caine and Oscar-nominee Harvey Keitel, along with Oscar-winners (and Academy favorites) Rachel Weisz and Jane Fonda. Give it a watch, above.
The opening moments of the trailer thematically encapsulate the entire project: a young boy – the representation of the coming generation – cannot believe his ears when he learns that a seemingly feeble old man composed a beautiful work of music. Centering Fred (Caine) and Mick (Keitel) – an accomplished composer and screenwriter, respectively – Youth tells the tale of two lifelong friends pondering their lives, their work, and the passion that has driven them over the years as they holiday together in the Swiss Alps. Fred has no plans to continue composing, to the chagrin of his persistent daughter (Weisz), while Mick feels compelled to complete his final screenplay to honor his creative muse Brenda (Fonda). Meanwhile, Fred consults with an actor in the prime of his career (Paul Dano) as he struggles with his next role.
In casting such seasoned veterans as headline actors, Youth aims to emphasize the notion that just because one has reached their twilight years does not meet they have nothing left to offer. It’s incredibly fitting, given the long, prolific careers of the headlining cast that have not flagged with the inevitability of age. The trailer juxtaposes imagery of the elderly – being herded around a supposedly relaxing retreat like sheep – with glimpses of Fred in moments of introspection, slowly learning to find his vigor once more, emphasizing the notion of “youth” as a state of mind.
Based solely on the trailer, it becomes patently obvious that Youth will take put audiences through an emotional wringer. Balancing mild humor with genuinely powerful moments, the film seemingly deplores the notion of cynicism, as Mick states bluntly to an unseen audience: “Emotions are all we’ve got.” The trope of aging one’s legacy has become commonplace over recent years in films such as Gran Torino and St. Vincent, especially among iconoclastic actors representative of the last generation.
That being said, the overall message of the film seems to possess a hopeful tone, indicating that while these men may have developed wrinkles and gray hair, they are nowhere near done.
Youth arrives in select U.S. theaters on December 4th, 2015.
Source: Fox Searchlight Pictures