Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash garnered immense acclaim at Sundance and only improved its stellar rep after being included in the Cannes Directors’ Fortnight. By all accounts, it’s one of the very best musical dramas in recent memory, thanks to its tight direction, thrilling story, dramatic tone and wholly compelling performances from Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons. And with its participation in the Toronto International Film Festival now set, something tells me that we’re going to be talking about Whiplash all the way up until its theatrical release in October.
An extremely tense and compelling new trailer for the movie is making the rounds online, keeping the focus squarely on Simmons’ vicious and ruthless band conductor and Teller’s struggling musical prodigy. Both performances look superb, and Chazelle’s script seems primed to provide a terrific showcase for both actors.
If I’m counting correctly, Teller has had exactly two great roles so far – in Rabbit Hole and The Spectacular Now – but Whiplash looks set to restore the actor’s leading man cred after his somewhat disappointing performances in That Awkward Moment and Divergent. Additionally, Simmons hasn’t been given a vehicle for his considerable talents in some time, so it will be great to see the often undervalued actor hold the spotlight here.
The trailer also makes much of Teller’s musical abilities – in case you were wondering, yes, the actor does actually play the drums.
Melissa Benoist, Austin Stowell, Jayson Blair, Kavita Patil, Michael Cohen, Kofi Siriboe and Paul Reiser all co-star in Whiplash, which Sony Pictures Classics will be distributing in the U.S. on October 10th.