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The new film by director Ang Lee, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, has one of the oddest titles in recent memory. If you were only going by the title, you’d have no idea what the movie was actually about. However, now that the first trailer has been released, you can see who Billy Lynn is and why he’s walking at halftime. While it does involve a football game, it goes much deeper than that.

The trailer does, in fact, open up at a football game halftime show, specifically one for the Dallas Cowboys. They’re honoring returning soldiers, however, while the people in the audience are getting fireworks and cheerleaders, what we hear is a somber rendition of David Bowie’s “Heroes,” letting us know that Billy Lynn’s Halftime Walk isn’t necessarily a celebration for Billy Lynn himself. What we’re actually seeing is a man who has seen the worst parts of war, coming to terms with his life now that the horror is over. It’s a touching and emotional story, something that we know Ang Lee is very capable of delivering.

While Billy Lynn himself, Joe Alwyn, is brand new to the big screen, he has plenty of veterans backing him up. Vin Diesel, Steve Martin, and Kristen Stewart all play roles in the film. The most interesting name on the marquee, however, may be Chris Tucker. He’s only glimpsed briefly in the trailer, as the one guy in a sportcoat inside a limousine full of soldiers in dress uniform. It’s been a few years since we’ve seen Tucker on screen, and we’re very curious about what he’s brining to Ang Lee’s latest..

In addition to trying to tell an emotional story, Ang Lee is trying to do so with the cutting edge of technology. Recently, Billy Lynn’s Halftime Walk was screened at the Future of Cinema Conference in its intended format: 3D, using a dual laser projector, at 4K resolution and at 120 frames per second. Putting all of these technical achievements together, the film is promising to deliver a dramatization of war on screen in a way that we’ve never seen before. Of course, that also means that viewing a trailer online will never be able to convey the movie in the way that Ang Lee wants you to see it.

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What do you think of your first look at Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk? You’ll be able to take the walk as well, when the film is released November 11.

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May 12, 2016
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