It’s not often we get a script from Joel and Ethan Coen that isn’t also directed by the duo. Suburbicon director George Clooney, however, is an inspired choice to handle their material. And that’s not just because he’s starred in several of their films and understands their style, but also because he’s a fine director in his own right, having achieved accolades for his work on 2002’s Confessions of a Dangerous Mind and 2005’s Good Night, and Good Luck.
The domestic thriller’s story is pure Coens, with a home invasion in 1950s suburbia leading an otherwise milquetoast family man played by Matt Damon down a path of violence, blackmail, and madness. The intensity is leavened by the Coens’ off-kilter sense of humor, which is well on display in the film’s trailer, which you can watch above.
Julianne Moore, Oscar Isaac, and Josh Brolin join Damon on the impressive cast list. The Coens’ have apparently been shopping the script around for nearly two decades; Clooney told Yahoo Movies that he was offered Isaac’s part back in 2001. “There are some similar themes to Fargo and Burn After Reading,” he noted. “Hapless characters making really bad decisions. The original script took place in the 1980s and didn’t have the Mayer family as neighbors so it was more of a comedy-thriller. We thought we’d like to make something a little less funny and a lot angrier. It seems like a good time for a film that feels angry.”
Suburbicon arrives in theaters on October 27th, though it’s also due for a screening at the Toronto International Film Festival in September.