Elle Fanning is a small-town teen with big dreams in the trailer for Max Minghella's Teen Spirit. Fanning stars as Violet, a shy teenager from the Isle of Wight who yearns to become a pop star and leave her home and broken family life behind. Aided by an unexpected mentor in the form of Vlad (Zlatko Buric) - a drunken "fan" who recognizes her potential - Violet enters a singing competition that will test her like nothing before in "a visceral and stylish spin on the Cinderella story" (per the film's synopsis).
Minghella, whom most people will recognize from his roles in The Social Network and The Handmaid's Tale (among other films and TV shows), made his directorial debut with Teen Spirit, drawing from his own original screenplay. The movie premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival earlier this year and is currently scheduled to hit U.S. theaters next spring. The film's marketing is getting underway ahead of then, starting with the trailer.
You can watch the Teen Spirit trailer below, courtesy of Bleecker Street and LD Entertainment (which are releasing the movie in theaters stateside). The film's supporting cast includes Rebecca Hall, in addition to The Last Kingdom's Millie Brady and Polish actress Agnieszka Grochowska as Violet's mother.
The Teen Spirit trailer does a nice job juxtaposing Violet's humble small-town life with her whirlwind experience after she enters said singing competition. It further succeeds at highlighting the film's musical side and includes a quick rundown of the many, many modern pop artists whose music is performed by Fanning at some point here. Early reviews for Teen Spirit at TIFF praised the movie for its energetic and stylized portrait of a young woman who just loves pop songs and is willing to do the work to make her dreams come true. At the same time, the film has been described as a glossy and formulaic take on the familiar story of a small-town kid with big dreams.
As far as directorial debuts go, however, it looks (and sounds) like Minghella mostly sticks the landing with Teen Spirit. Fanning is also impressing critics with her singing in the film, so it'll be interesting to see if others are as taken with her pop song renditions. Assuming word of mouth continues to be more positive than not, Teen Spirit may yet find success at the box office as counter-programming to all the big movies hitting the scene next spring (including, the superhero tentpoles Shazam! and Avengers: Endgame).
Teen Spirit opens in U.S. theaters on April 5, 2019.