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Over the course of his career Robert Pattinson has largely been known for being a handsome actor playing handsome characters in big franchise films. Characters like Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter and Edward Cullen in the Twilight franchise gave the actor a certain image, an image that he appears to be doing his damnedest to shake these days. After his unrecognizable turn in last year's Good Time, Robert Pattinson is once again eschewing his babyface roots for his latest film, Damsel. The Western looks unlike what we normally get from the genre and finds Robert Pattinson trading in his pearly white fangs for a silver tooth and some old west grit. Watch the trailer for Damsel below.
I like how this trailer plays with an ominous tone like it is going to be a gritty Western for the first few seconds before we get a miniature pony and a guy wearing a barrel. Robert Pattinson looks quite entertaining here as the wide-eyed, clueless and overly optimistic pioneer Samuel Alabaster, who is trying to win the heart of Mia Wasikowska's Penelope, who doesn't appear to be entirely receptive to it. Pattinson is definitely playing against type here and the dynamic between him and Mia Wasikowska's rough and tumble character looks to be a highlight of the movie. The gun-toting and fierce Penelope doesn't seem to fit the damsel in distress the title would imply, showing that genre tropes are clearly being played with here.
This is a very interesting trailer, because Damsel appears to have the drama and action we generally expect from the Western genre, while also incorporating a fair bit of quirky deadpan humor, too. This doesn't look like a full-on comedy in the vein of Blazing Saddles or A Million Ways to Die in the West, nor does it look entirely serious. There is definitely plenty of goofiness going on here and I'm curious how the dramatic and comedic elements will work together. There is something undeniably charming about the trailer, beyond just the miniature horse, that indicates Damsel could be just the kind of fun movie that puts a smile on your face if it works. Damsel looks quite unique and original, not just for Robert Pattinson, but for what we are accustomed to with Westerns.
Robert Pattinson and Mia Wasikowska look to be having some fun in this film so hopefully that comes through. You can see the two actors, including Samuel Alabaster's golden tooth, in the poster for Damsel below.
Something tells me that this poster won't make its way to as many teenage bedroom walls as those from Twilight, but it is a solid poster that appears to sell what Damsel will be. Damsel is written and directed by David and Nathan Zellner, who will also act in the film. The two brothers previously worked together on Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter. Damsel rides into theaters on June 22nd. Check out our guide for some other under-the-radar movies hitting this summer and for everything else, take a look at our release schedule.