If there's any immediate comment worth offering about the trailer for writer/director Rick Famuyiwa's upcoming fifth feature - the 2015 Sundance Film Festival darling Dope - it's that the clip makes the film look deceptively awesome. Retro style video game cut sequences overlay rapid-fire images ranging from social media postings to yearbook photos. There's a sense of hyperactive brio here, backed up by a Naughty By Nature classic. It lasts just one minute, but it's mesmerizing.
So, of course, there's no way that's what Dope really looks like. That would be crazy. Scattered throughout the preview, we see shots of real actors on real sets that are probably more suggestive of the film's actual aesthetic; none of those images tell us what Dope is about, but then again neither do the teaser's stylized flourishes. It's like watching a collaboration between Edgar Wright and Adam Leon set against an Inglewood backdrop.
Dope, as it were, is about Malcolm (Shameik Moore): a geeky kid with Harvard aspirations, who lives in a tough Inglewood neighborhood; by contrivance and circumstance involving a shoot-out at a night club, he ends up with a stash of drugs courtesy of the local dealer, Dom (played by rapper A$ap Rocky). Beset by Dom's rivals, Malcolm has to go on the run with his friends (Kiersey Clemons and The Grand Budapest Hotel's Tony Revolori) to stay alive.
You don't get much (well, any really) actual plot information for Dope from the trailer, but best to remember this is just a teaser. Or, if you would, consider it Famuyiwa's pitch to entice the many film buffs out there who didn't see Dope when it premiered at Sundance - where it earned piles of raves and an award for editing (along with a nomination for the Grand Jury Prize).
The film also features the talents of Zoë Kravitz (The Divergent Series: Insurgent), Keith Stanfield (Straight Outta Compton), and Oscar-winner Forest Whitaker (last seen in Taken 3, unfortunately). Whitaker is both the movie's narrator and big-name producer, as it were. However the masses end up responding to Dope when it reaches a multiplex near you, we can at least all agree that the teaser is pretty slick, yes?
Dope begins a limited theatrical release in the U.S. on June 19th, 2015.
Source: iTunes Movie Trailers