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Bradley Cooper Reads The Mind Of Cate Blanchett And More In Guillermo Del Toro's Final Nightmare Alley Trailer

Some people might think that, for the most part, 2021’s movie rundown is pretty much finished. Though if you pay attention to the awards season chatter, or even if you’re just looking out for Spider-Man: No Way Home, you’d know December is a pretty big month. It’s about to get bigger, as Guillermo del Toro’s final trailer for his latest film Nightmare Alley shows Bradley Cooper reading the mind of Cate Blanchett, and a whole lot more, in bloody detail.

As Searchlight Pictures is positioning this film for an awards qualifying run, the promotional machine is starting to rev up rather fiercely. Our latest look at Stan Kenton (Bradley Cooper) includes everything from a lie detector test to good old fashioned noir movie seduction. The one thing you won’t find in here is the del Toro staple of supernatural monsters, and that’s for good reason. In the world of author William Lindsay Gresham’s source novel, humanity is the beast, and its denizens can shed blood just fine without any powers. 

This is a slicker, meaner beast than the previous trailer we saw for Nightmare Alley, which brooded a little more as it laid the foundation. With the introductions to the world of Stan Kenton, and his transition from carnival performer to high society adviser already established, it’s time to throw some threats into the pot. Bradley Cooper’s ambitious huckster certainly gets his share of warnings from multiple parties, with varying degrees of anger being presented. 

On one hand, the ever busy Cate Blanchett cryptically warn him of keeping the right people happy, with a cool and icy demeanor. Which is a perfect juxtaposition from Richard Jenkins, who gets a bit fiery with his insistence on results from his mind reading friend. Nightmare Alley wouldn’t be a film noir if it didn’t have its slimy protagonist pinned into a corner every so often, so this tracks. 

Marking Guillermo del Toro’s first directorial effort since 2018’s Best Picture winner The Shape of Water, his departure from the world of fantastical monsters is as slick as you’d expect. Going hard on the noir aspects, as it fulfills a lifelong dream of his in the world of filmmaking, Nightmare Alley looks like a dream that promises a swift passage to Hell. In a world like the one we’ve just gotten a glimpse at, such a prospect is probably seen as a kindness among the cruelest of people. 

Nightmare Alley will invite viewers into its web of deceit, only in theaters, on December 17th. Don’t be afraid to check out the 2021 release schedule, as there’s plenty more where this came from in the next month. Though considering that other trailer that dropped earlier this week, it wouldn't take a mind reader to guess another anticipated December release. 

Mike Reyes

CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.