By Francesco DeLuca

Here we get a look at Jeff Nichols’ fourth film, Midnight Special, a sci-fi chase film with a home-run cast of Michael Shannon, Joel Edgerton, Kirsten Dunst, Adam Driver, and Sam Shepard. The film is said to revolve around Roy (Shannon) and his efforts to protect his supernaturally gifted son Alton (Jaeden Lieberher) from Shepard’s extreme religious group, while also being pursued by government officials like Adam Driver.

“I think you’re a weapon…and the ranch thinks you’re their savior.” – Adam Driver


Immediately I was attracted to the tone of the trailer, which begins with Alton emerging from under bed sheets with goggles and hearing protector earmuffs on before being picked up by Roy. A cut reveals Joel Edgerton’s character pulling his shirt over a concealed gun, strange cardboard contraption in hand. All this occurs while an amber alert on TV fills the background. 

The next 30 seconds or so follows comments from Adam Driver, Sam Shepard, and a woman on Alton’s condition, intercut with small clips showing destruction, and others showing a speeding car with Alton in the backseat, turning off the road before its headlights go out. 

Glimpses of Alton’s power can be seen, as his eyes glow and explosions, both on land and in the sky, presumably are caused by these abilities. 

The trailer does a tremendous job utilizing a subtle, ominous score throughout, slowly building before cutting out entirely, and only heavy breathing is audible before Alton says, “dad…it’s okay.”

Overall, the trailer left me with a ton of questions, as a good trailer should. How did Alton get his powers? What does the government want from him? What does the religious group want from him? If Roy is his father, why does the broadcast say Alton has been abducted? What’s with the goggles?

I think the movie will be full of suspense and mystery, and I’m excited to see where the plot goes throughout the course of the film. They boy’s apparent eccentric attitude (maybe it’s just the goggles) is a facet of his character than I’m intrigued by, and I think that extra layer past the fact that he has superpowers is an important one.

The film, originally scheduled for a November 25, 2015 release, was pushed back to March 18