‘Athena’ Trailer: Romain Gavras Helms Cop Revenge Drama as a Greek Tragedy

Gavras' latest film is set to premiere at the 2022 Venice Film Festival before launching on Netflix September 23.
Athena Netflix

Justice will be served as anarchy erupts following a murder at the hands of a rogue police officer.

Romain Gavras’ “Athena” tells an all-too-timely tale of cop corruption, militant protests, and the intersection between nationalism and personal duty. The film premieres at the 2022 Venice Film Festival on September 2, followed by a September 23 Netflix release.

Per the official synopsis, after the death of his youngest brother following an alleged police altercation, Abdel (Dali Benssalah) is called back from the frontline to find his family torn apart. Caught between his younger brother Karim’s (Sami Slimane) desire for revenge and the criminal dealings of his older brother Moktar (Ouassini Embarek), he struggles to calm the rising tensions. As the situation escalates, their community Athena is transformed into a fortress under siege, becoming a scene of tragedy for both the family and beyond.

Gavras directed, produced, and co-wrote the feature along with Ladj Ly (“Les Misérables”) and Elias Belkeddar (“My Days of Glory”). Matias Boucard serves as the director of cinematography. Gavras’ previous two films, “The World Is Yours” (2018) and “Our Day Will Come” (2013), both debuted at film festivals, with “The World Is Yours” premiering at Cannes and “Our Day Will Come” at SXSW.

Gavras previously helmed the “No Church in the Wild” music video for Jay-Z and Kanye West, as well as M.I.A.’s “Bad Girls” and “Born Free.”

Like “Our Day Will Come,” Gavras’ “Athena” is billed as an “immersive modern” Greek tragedy, as even referenced in the title.

“We conceived of it and choreographed it almost like an opera, but always in a very realistic way so that the choreography isn’t felt,” Gavras told Deadline. “There is a heightened reality with very strong symbolism — almost mythological shots — layered onto the present to create a sort of timeless war.”

Gavras added of the film’s Netflix release “When you do a film for a platform, you don’t have the right to be tiresome one single second. I think you have to catch people and not let them go,” saying that the streamer “really let me do and pushed me to do the film we wanted to do from script stage.”

“Athena” is produced by Iconoclast with Charles-Marie Anthonioz, Mourad Belkeddar, Jean Duhamel, and Nicolas Lhermitte. Co-writer Ladj Ly and writer/director Gavras also produce the feature.

“Athena” premieres September 23 on Netflix.

Check out the trailer below.

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