A rare, non-holiday Wednesday opening, Oliver Stone's latest film, World Trade Center, is set to make its big screen debut. It is the second film this year to deal with the tragic events of 9/11. The first film was the exceptional United 93, which dealt with the flight that went down in Pennsylvania. That one was a powerful piece of cinema that I was not prepared for; I thought I was, but I wasn't. Perhaps, I am more prepared now following that experience.
Oliver Stone is not one to shy away from controversy; quite the opposite, he seems to thrive on it. However, I have been hearing that this film does not attempt to introduce any conspiracies or hidden agendas, or personal thoughts on the situation. Rather, the film takes a look at the tragedy through the eyes of two of survivors, Port Authority police officers who survived after being buried beneath the rubble of the fallen towers. The film stars Nicolas Cage and Michael Pena as John McLoughlin and Will Jimeno, respectively. They were two of the first responders when everything happened.
The trailer alone is a strong piece of work. The preview highlights the everyday manner in which they went about their morning, just like any other day, and when the planes struck, how they went to work. I even found myself getting a little choked up watching it. This is not going to be easy to watch. I have faith in Stone, and although I am not the biggest fan of his work, he can deal with the big emotions that will be at work here. At the same time, Nicolas Cage has that long face that can subtly carry a lot of emotion, and should work wonders.
In addition to the trailer, Apple has a brief featurette on the making of the film. The clip features interviews with the stars, Cage, Pena, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Maria Bello, as well as the producers and Oliver Stone. The talk about how this is a positive tale of courage and survival, about how this event brought out all of the good in us as we all came together. On top of that, there are a number of interviews with those involved, including John McLoughlin and Will Jimeno. They have really put up a nice little site for the film.
World Trade Center opens nationwide today. It is being released through Paramount Pictures, it is rated PG-13, and is 125 minutes long.