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Danish writer-director Nicolas Winding Refn first raised eyebrows and drew notice Stateside for his bold and very violent biopic about the United Kingdom's most notorious inmate, Michael "Charles Bronson" Peterson in 2008's Bronson. When he teamed up with feminist heartthrob and fearless thespian Ryan Gosling for their shocking but earnest homage to classic Hollywood with Drive, critics were chomping at the bit to see this mysterious flick with a nameless hero, in part because of the pair's individual reputations for daring drama, and in part because of the stylish yet menacing marketing campaign.
Now, we're just months away from the release of Refn and Gosling's second collaboration, Only God Forgives, and the ad campaign is heating up. First we got a glimpse of a brutalized Gosling with this behind-the-scenes photo. Then the first poster put their marred leading man front and center in black and white. Color images of this look followed, and now we've got the film's first teaser. Check it out below:
Though we only get flashes of the new film in the teaser, the sense of menace it contains is clear between the tense music, disturbing imagery and the actors names over what appears to be a machete being raised for attack. Written by Refn, Only God Forgives centers on the conflict that arises between and American gangster (Gosling) and a Bangkok police lieutenant, a faceoff that will be settled in a Thai-boxing match.
Only God Forgives will open in Denmark on May 23rd. It's likely a U.S. theatrical release will follow, but we're still waiting to hear when.