Philip Noyce’s adaptation of Lois Lowry’s beloved young adult novel The Giver hits theaters Friday, and The Weinstein Company is getting into the final promotional push. It’ll be a surprise if this is anywhere near as huge as the likes of The Hunger Games or Divergent, it’s a much more subdued marketing approach, but they appear to be banking on multiple generations who love the book—it’s even a core part of many curriculums across the country—to get people into theaters. Now they’ve released a handful of new clips for you to peruse.
The Giver is set in a bland dystopian world where, much like Pleasantville, everything is black and white until the kids stop taking their mysterious injections that apparently suppress the urges, if you know what we mean. When Jonas (Brenton Thwaites, The Signal), the receiver of knowledge—a young boy who hangs out with a grizzled, cantankerous man known as The Giver (Jeff Bridges)—learns the truth about this society, he entices the others to skip their daily doses, and see the world in bright color. They don’t know precisely what they’re missing out on, but they know they’re missing something.
In this first clip, Fiona (Odeya Rush) basically exposes their entire plan, narcing out Jonas to an evil looking Katie Holmes in the process. Snitches get stitches, man. You just know that hot on the heels of such a reveal, they’re (whoever they are in this particular instance) are going to come after Jonas hard, which is always the way, so you can’t help but think this moment comes right before shit gets all kinds of crazy.
This clip is a showdown between legendary actors as Meryl Streep’s sinister Chief Elder faces off with Bridges. There’s always one of these characters in every YA story, some member of the established order with a vested interest in keeping things the way they are. And from the look of things, the Giver has made what she considers some mistakes in the past and may be on a very short leash.
Jonas and Fiona aren’t the only kids in this world, but not every young person is as eager as they are to buck the status quo. From what this clip contains, the Elders are going to use that to their advantage and exploit them for all they’re worth, starting with Cameron Monaghan’s Asher.
And then they start stealing babies. You can only assume that they’re taking the kids to get them out of this rigid, oppressive society so they can grow up free and unfettered by the man, but they’re still stealing babies. Also, every YA story worth anything has to have a romance at the center, and you get a full blast of Jonas and Fiona sucking face at the end of this clip.
The Giver opens everywhere Friday, August 15.