The U.S. trailer for Stan & Ollie includes critic pull quotes that praise director Jon S. Baird's biographical drama. Stan & Ollie has been on awards season predictors' radars for awhile now, and not just because it's a memoir about the Golden Age Hollywood comedy duo Laurel and Hardy. Baird's movie was also written by Jeff Pope, who was nominated for an Oscar in 2014 for cowriting Philomena with Steve Coogan. The latter even costars here with John C. Reilly, who's already having a nice year between his celebrated performance from The Sisters Brothers and the positive response to his animated sequel, Ralph Breaks the Internet (which opens in theaters today).
Stan & Ollie is more of a memoir than a biopic, in the sense that it takes place in the early 1950s and doesn't attempt to cover the entirety of its namesakes' career together. Rather, the movie follows Stan Laurel (Coogan) and Oliver Hardy (Reilly) as they embark upon a variety hall tour of Britain, with their glory days on the big screen well behind them. Along the way, the pair must deal with such obstacles as dwindling crowds at their performances and Oliver's failing health - not to mention, "the long-buried ghosts" of their past, as the film's U.S. trailer calls further attention to.
Sony Pictures Classics has now released the U.S. trailer for Stan & Ollie online, ahead of its debut in theaters. This is the second preview that's been released for the film overall (after the "main" Stan & Ollie trailer), but the first unveiled since the movie premiered at the 2018 BFI London Film Festival in October. Take a look in the space below.
As evidenced by the pull quotes in this new trailer, Stan & Ollie has gotten a largely positive response from the critics who've caught it on the festival circuit (where it's screened at both the 2018 BFI festival and AFI Fest last week). The film is sitting at 92% Fresh after 25 reviews over on Rotten Tomatoes, with both Coogan and Reilly having earned praise for their performances as the titular duo. Similarly, the actual movie has been applauded for the way it examines the challenges that Laurel and Hardy faced because of their lifelong partnership - as well as the effect they had on the pair's non-professional friendship.
Coogan and Reilly aren't the only cast members who've gotten attention for their efforts in Stan & Ollie, either. Shirley Henderson (the Harry Potter films) and Nina Arianda (Goliath) have also been commended by critics for their turns as Lucille Hardy and Ida Kitaeva Laurel - the titular duo's wives, who are even described as being "a formidable double act in their own right" in the film's synopsis. However the movie ends up faring this awards season, it sounds as though Stan & Ollie is one that film buffs may want to check out, when it arrives just in time to qualify for next year's Oscars in December.
Source: Sony Pictures Classics
- Stan & Ollie (2018) release date: Dec 28, 2018