It’s the film that the director, stars, and executive producer do not want you to see, but that’s not going to stop the studio marketing machine from showing us clips, posters, and trailers for Paul Schrader’s CIA thriller Dying of the Light.
Protests from the director and stars Nicolas Cage and Anton Yelchin are due to the producers taking over the film after Schrader offered a less than stellar cut – and although they are required by their contracts to not disparage the film, they have nonetheless made their objections very known. Though what the public sees will unlikely be Schrader’s cut, we are still going to see something – and the first clip gives us a bit of a taste.
Nicolas Cage is Lake, a veteran CIA operative who has been forced to retire, an event we catch our first glimpse of in this clip. When his protege (Yelchin) discovers that his former boss’s arch-nemesis has resurfaced, Lake goes off on a journey in pursuit of his enemy. It may not sound like the sort of film to spark production mayhem, but this is a Paul Schrader flick after all.
In this first clip, we see Lake being forced to vacate his office, an order which he takes with all the grace one would expect from a disgruntled Nicolas Cage. Is there great drama to be found in Cage shouting and throwing things? Perhaps in context, but not so much here. In fact, it looks like Nicky is a step away from full Cage Rage.
We will probably never know what Schrader’s cut of Dying of the Light would actually look like. Whether that is a good or bad thing must depend on your feelings towards the director, but as it is I have to say that I’m not overwhelmingly optimistic about the current state of the film. If this clip is any indication, it might be one to avoid.
Dying of the Light will hit theaters on December 5.