At First Glance: “The Danish Girl”

Some films that are highly talked about, due to the story and who is set to star, have a lot to live up to in the trailer. If even these expectations aren’t met, then a lot of hope for the film dies right then and there. If one is fortunate, the film will go above all the expectations you had, or even the ones you didn’t that should have been obvious.

The upcoming Focus Features film “The Danish Girl”, looks to be a beautifully captured film that will tell an incredible story.

This biographical drama stars Eddie Redmayne (“Thomas & Friends: Sodor’s Legend of the Lost Treasure”, “Jupiter Ascending”), Alicia Vikander (upcoming “Burnt”, “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.”), Matthias Schoenaerts (“Far from the Madding Crowd”, “The Loft”), Ben Whishaw (upcoming films “Spectre”, “Suffragette”), Amber Heard (“Magic Mike XXL”, “3 Days to Kill”), Sebastian Koch (upcoming projects “Homeland”, “Bridge of Spies”), Emerald Fennell (upcoming “Pan”, “Call the Midwife”), and Adrian Schiller (upcoming films “Suffragette”, “Victor Frankenstein”).

The film is directed by Tom Hooper (“Les Miserables”, “The King’s Speech”) and written by Lucinda Coxon (“The Crimson Petal and the White”, “Wild Target”). It is based on the novel of the same name by David Ebershoff.

The film is expected to hit theaters on Nov. 27, 2015 in a limited capacity.Wide release probably in early 2016. It is also set to be screened at the 72nd Venice International Film Festival on Sept. 5 and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), which runs from Sept. 10 to 20.
I heard about this sometime around when Redmayne won his Academy Award for the spectacular “The Theory of Everything”, and have only heard the same drips and drabs as everyone else. The picture intrigued me as the look was created quite well that only certain features of Redmayne could be pulled out. Now, there’s the trailer. And while I’m not over the moon about it, much like “Theory of Everything”, I’m excited enough to want a little bit more than I got in the trailer. This year, like all the previous years it seems, will be a very competitive year when it comes to all the awards up for grabs.

To get it out of the way fast, as they’re the two to watch, Redmayne and Vikander already look amazing in this film. After seeing Vikander in “Ex Machina”, I have great faith that she’ll deliver a good performance. I’ll just leave it there. With Redmayne as her acting partner, she’ll no doubt have a lot to give and respond to which will make this film even better on all levels. Redmayne, well, if you saw him play Stephen Hawking than you pretty much know he has the ability to create a complex character. Yes, he’ll mostly be compared to (or is it with?) his most recent successful performance, but I think he’ll deliver well enough for people to be satisfied.

They’ll also, as it appears, have great chemistry and this will allow these characters to have such an incredible relationship. You see this pretty quickly and it grows. It too is captured beautifully and will probably be half the reason you keep paying attention. I was amazed, that even after Redmayne’s character reveals that he thinks he’s really a woman, Vikander is at first in shock, but later really opens to this and the relationship changes, but for the better and it’s just as strong as before. All that came to me in this first trailer, so I’m excited to see this, more or less, I hope, come to be in the finished film.

As this is a period piece, look and feel and setting are crucial to selling this film. If I can’t believe I’m in the early 1900s, then you’ve pretty much lost me already. That’s the great thing about trailers, be they teasers or full length. This film looks stunning. Gorgeous, although not as gorgeous as the upcoming film “Carol”. Still, I was amazed at how everything seemed to capture this time and country.

Once you hit September, it has been repeatedly said, it’s basically the start of awards season. That means a lot of dramatic films, with big name talent directing, starring and producing many films all vying for attention. Some are just films that build up a lot of hype and then fizzle in the final product or aren’t as good as previously thought. While it’s too early to say if this film will be good, or more of a character study snooze fest like “Foxcatcher”, I can say that I’m more excited than I was before. I’ll be eagerly awaiting any new footage and may even pay attention to some of what’s said about the film as it shows at various festivals later this year.


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