Unlimited Access. Try it Today! Your First 10 Days Always $0.99


Entertainment Movies

'The Giver' trailer: Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep in YA dystopia

As the popularity of "The Hunger Games" franchise and the anticipation of the release of "Divergent" can attest, dystopic young-adult stories are all the rage these days, on screen and on the page. Now the first trailer has been released for a big-screen adaptation of one of the genre's seminal books, "The Giver."

Based on Lois Lowry's Newbury-winning novel and directed by Phillip Noyce, "The Giver" is set in a future society free from pain, suffering and conflict but also characterized by conformity and an utter lack of feeling.

The Australian actor Brenton Thwaites plays Jonas, a young man chosen to be the Receiver of Memory, the lone person in his community who carries the knowledge of what the world was like before strife was replaced by sameness. Jeff Bridges (who also serves as a producer on the film) plays his mentor, the previous Receiver, who becomes the Giver when he passes on knowledge of the old world.

PHOTOS: 25 young adult novels turned into films

And as we know, a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

The trailer for the long-gestating movie, which you can watch above, opens with voice-over from Meryl Streep, who plays the chief elder and lays out the future society's manifesto: "From great suffering, great pain, came a solution: communities, where disorder became harmony," she says.

Beneath the surface of the seemingly ideal society, however, lurks something more sinister. Bridges' character tells Jonas, "The way things look and the way things are, are very different." He also warns, "I cannot prepare you for what's going to happen."

The movie also stars Katie Holmes, Alexander Skarsgard and Taylor Swift. The Weinstein Co. will release "The Giver" Aug. 15.


'Maleficent' trailer: Angelina Jolie flies high, plays with fire

Disney's Pixar planning 'Incredibles' sequel and a third 'Cars' film

Lena Dunham 'disgusted with' Woody Allen, won't denounce his work

Follow @ogettell

PHOTOS AND MORE PHOTOS: Faces to watch 2014 | Movies ENVELOPE: The latest awards buzz DOCUMENTARIES: 10 best of 2013, and a new crop in 2014

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • 'Dior and I' a stitch-in-time peek at haute couture creation
    'Dior and I' a stitch-in-time peek at haute couture creation

    They don't call it haute couture for nothing.

  • Review: 'The Water Diviner'
    Review: 'The Water Diviner'

    Russell Crowe's feature directorial debut, "The Water Diviner," stems from an honest impulse to dramatize ordinary people who honor their dead. Yet the results are narratively dishonest and emotionally a little cheap. A single performance lifts the film above the level of mediocrity; more on that...

  • Review: 'Little Boy'
    Review: 'Little Boy'

    "Little Boy" answers a question most tear-jerkers wouldn't have the nerve to ask: Can the bombing of Hiroshima be manipulated narratively, if briefly, into a position of warming our hearts?

  • Review: 'Ex Machina'
    Review: 'Ex Machina'

    A grandly ridiculous theatrical tradition born in ancient Greece, deus ex machina meant, literally, a god borne by a machine descending from the sky to determine a story's outcome.

  • Review: 'The Age of Adaline'
    Review: 'The Age of Adaline'

    Hollywood long ago ceded "love that stands the test of time" to the realm of science fiction and fantasy, so "The Age of Adaline" falls neatly into a genre that includes "The Time Traveler's Wife," "About Time," and even "Somewhere in Time."

  • Review: 'Clouds of Sils Maria'
    Review: 'Clouds of Sils Maria'

    Now 60, and always more of a wry classicist than a maverick, the writer-director Olivier Assayas is one of the steadiest and most reliable filmmakers in contemporary cinema. I like his latest, "Clouds of Sils Maria," a great deal; it's beautifully acted and has a few wise (if familiar) things to...