Fox Searchlight has released the first trailer for The Aftermath. If there is one thing that has seemingly been done to death, yet also seems to find a way to still be interesting much of the time, It’s World War II movies. In this case, we’re looking at the drama just after the war ends, which is something that isn’t explored nearly as often. Especially in the way that it’s being explored here, which layers in a scandalous affair to go along with the usual wartime drama.
The trailer kicks off with a couple reunited in the ashes of war and things are clearly a bit uncomfortable for what we assume are complicated reasons that go beyond just trying to recover from the worst war in human history. Things get even more uncomfortable rather quickly as this couple winds up moving into a luxurious house that the British government has taken from a local German man, who is still mourning the loss of his wife and trying to deal with his daughter at the same time. Then things get oddly heated in a way that nobody would likely expect from anything even tangentially related to WWII. Lots of layers of drama in here.
The Aftermath is set in Germany in 1946 just after WWII ended. Rachael Morgan (Keira Knightley) arrives in Hamburg, which is decimated, in the middle of winter, to reunite with her husband Lewis (Jason Clarke), a British colonel tasked with rebuilding the city. No easy task, as we see. But as they venture to their new home, Rachael is more than a little surprised to find out that Lewis has made an unexpected decision: They will be sharing the house with its previous owners, who consist a German widower (Alexander Skarsgård) and his daughter. Drama ensues.
James Kent (Testament of Youth) is in the director’s chair, but he had some help in the form of the legendary Ridley Scott, who serves as an executive producer on the movie. To what degree Scott was actually involved isn’t totally clear, but the trailer is happy to showcase his name and having a guy that talented involved in any capacity certainly can’t hurt anything. The movie is based on author Rhidian Brook’s novel of the same name. Brook also helped pen the screenplay, alongside Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse.
Many times, a movie like this, especially with this cast, might seem like Oscar bait. And maybe that was indeed the intention originally. But the studio is set to release The Aftermath on April 26, 2019, which is pretty far outside the typical awards season race. So this will probably just be, at best, an enjoyable pre-summer drama. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that sort of thing. Be sure to check out the first trailer for The Aftermath from the FoxSearchlight YouTube channel for yourself below, as well as the movie’s poster.