There are some truly terrific thrillers and some wonderful period pieces out there. It’s rare, though, to find a film that’s capable of being both. The Two Faces of January, from Drive writer Hossein Amini and based on the bestseller by Patricia Highsmith, may just fit the bill. Set in 1960s Greece, the film follows a seemingly happy American couple (Kristen Dunst and Viggo Mortensen) who become embroiled with a shady tour guide (Oscar Isaac) after getting mixed up in a murder.
A new clip and featurette from the film were released today and they hint at a strongly acted thriller that makes an effort to look good, too. In the clip, Dunst’s character flirts with Isaac’s tour guide, who is clearly infatuated with her. It appears that she’s manipulating him, but to and for what end is unclear. Both actors look like they’re at the top of their game though, and Amini has definitely nailed the period feel.
Also released recently was a featurette that delves into how the filmmakers approached creating a ’60s feel for The Two Faces of January. “It feels like an old postcard at times,” says Dunst with a grin, “But it still feels fresh.” There was clearly a ton of effort poured into the costuming, makeup, lighting and set decoration on The Two Faces of January, and it shows.
Hopefully the story in The Two Faces of January will be as impressive as its appearance – and seeing as Amini was credited with the screenplay, I don’t see that being a problem. After all, Drive excelled with compelling, tense dialogue that never felt excessive, and The Two Faces of January is based on an acclaimed thriller from one of the most widely respected authors in the genre. I don’t see where it could go wrong.
All signs indicate that this will be one to keep an eye out for. Though no U.S. release date has been set for The Two Faces of January, that’s likely coming soon, seeing as the film has already premiered abroad.