For his latest feature, good ol’ Texan boy Richard Linklater will take leave of the Lone Star State and blaze a path northwards. He’ll first head to the Pacific Northwest, which sets the scene for the upcoming Where’d You Go, Bernadette, and then onward to Antarctica.
That’s the journey undertaken by the title character, a once-great architect reduced to a mostly housebound life as a full-time wife and mother. In the newly released trailer, Cate Blanchett plays her with a spiky wit that sets her apart from the squares (such as Kristen Wiig, her mommy nemesis) parenting the other kids at the school attended by daughter Bee (Emma Nelson).
She loves Bee and her husband Elgin (Billy Crudup), but can’t take much more of her provincial day-to-day, so she slips out a bathroom window on an otherwise ordinary afternoon. The 2012 novel forming the basis of this film focuses on her family’s efforts to track her down, which lead them to the iciest reaches of the globe.
It’s a odd story, with one foot in comedy and the other in existential drama. The trailer plays it as a feather-light adventure with sprinklings of humor at every turn, but the book placed a greater focus on Bernadette’s feeling of being trapped in her own life and requiring an escape.
But if anyone can manage that balance of tones, it’s Blanchett. It wasn’t so long ago that she married dry levity with middle-aged female crisis in Blue Jasmine, the film for which she won her last Oscar. Nobody reckons with the intimate horror of approaching your fiftieth birthday quite like her!
Where’d You Go, Bernadette comes to theaters in the US on 16 August. A date for the UK has yet to be set.
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