Lady Bird—Greta Gerwig's Oscar-nominated coming-of-age story starring Saoirse Ronan—may technically be a "period piece," since the thing is set in 2002 or whatever, but that's not exactly what the phrase calls to mind. True period films are full of elaborate sets and meticulous costume design, not just flip phones and some puka-shell necklaces. Saoirse Ronan made a name for herself starring in that kind of period movie, first in 2007's adaptation of Ian McEwan's novel Atonement and then in 2015's Brooklyn. Now, it looks like she's headed back to the genre again.
On Thursday, Bleecker Street released the first trailer for Ronan's new film, On Chesil Beach, and the thing looks beautiful, delicate, and nothing like Lady Bird.
On Chesil Beach is adapted from an Ian McEwan book, just like Atonement, but this time, McEwan's plot centers on a pair of buttoned-up, British newlyweds in 1962—played by Ronan and Dunkirk's Billy Howle—struggling with their new marriage and narrow-minded, mid-century views on sex.
The trailer focuses on the couple's honeymoon and Ronan's struggle to consummate their marriage, eventually turning to a sex manual for advice, but not finding much. "Have you actually forgotten that we were married today?" Howle's character shouts as his wife falls into tears in one scene. "We’re man and wife, that’s what you promised."
Variety heaped praise on On Chesil Beach after it premiered at TIFF last September, calling it "a lyrical and rapturous film" and comparing it to the brilliant, Oscar-nominated romance Call Me by Your Name. The review also praised the direction from first-time director Dominic Cooke, writing that the film "marks one of the most impressive debuts of a director since Tom Ford made A Single Man."
On Chesil Beach is set to hit theaters May 18, and if it's really anything like Saoirse Ronan's Call Me by Your Name, we're here for it. Give the trailer a watch above.
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