Divergent, out March 21, doesn’t seem to be garnering as much interest or as excitement as it should. The film adaptation of the first installment of Veronica Roth’s best-selling YA trilogy is admittedly working with a few disadvantages: a skilled but less-than-buzzworthy star in Shailene Woodley, perception that it’s a Hunger Games clone, and a high school-as-real life premise that’s more silly than scary.
The marketing team behind Divergent seems to be aware of its obstacles, because they released a fantastic new trailer yesterday that should finally pique audiences. The franchise’s high-concept world-building is now an asset: “One hundred years ago, after the war, our founders created a system that they believed would create lasting peace,” Tris (Woodley) explains, reassuring us that this grave new world boasts a logic of its own. The trailer focuses on Tris’ Dauntless tribe and exploits the latter’s inherently cinematic lifestyle: sleek black outfits, ostentatious tattoos, reckless risk-taking.
Best of all, an officious Kate Winslet — the actress in her most compelling mode — joins Woodley in the cast, which is largely populated by unknowns. (Though unseen in the trailer, Miles Teller, Woodley’s co-star in The Spectacular Now, plays Tris’ nemesis.) “The only way for you to survive is for each of you to claim your rightful place,” declares Winslet in her frosty blond bob. It’s a rousing sentiment, as well as a bleak one — and it’s the film’s creation of an urgently hopeful dystopia that’ll have us buying tickets on opening weekend along with the rest of the fan girls.
Watch the new Divergent trailer: