Even after three vastly different feature films (see: Moon, Source Code and Warcraft), writer-director Duncan Jones has already cemented his status as one of the more exciting directors working in the industry today. His latest project, Mute, heralds another creative shift.
Lifting inspiration from Casablanca and Ridley Scott’s seminal Blade Runner, Mute is pitched as a far-future sci-fi pic set against the Berlin of 2052. Alexander Skarsgård, Paul Rudd, Florence Kasumba and Justin Theroux are among the enviable cast and today, Entertainment Weekly has brought forth a trio of neon-drenched images for Jones’ latest.
Embedded above, here we get our first look at Skarsgård’s silent bartender, Leo Beiler (Skarsgård), a reticent character simply looking to make ends meet in the city where “east crashes against west.” However, his girlfriend Naadirah (Seyneb Saleh) has gone AWOL, sending Beiler onto the bustling streets of the German capital, where he comes into contact with Rudd and Theroux’s wise-cracking American surgeons.
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Dripping with film noir sensibilities, Duncan Jones has previously described Mute as a “thriller with a very weird tone,” teasing that “it goes very dark, then it also goes very darkly funny. It’s science-fiction urban, so it certainly owes some of its influence to Blade Runner.”
What’s more, Berlin is a city that holds a tremendous sense of modern history, one that bubbled to the fore right around the time that the infamous Berlin Wall came tumbling down in ’89, so it’ll be fascinating to see how Jones plans to tap into those underlying cultural divides.