Preview: Allied

Set against the traumatic background of World War Two, Allied looks set to be a tense spy thriller enhanced by the prestige of Brad Pitt and the considerable talent of Marion Cotillard. The film follows the relationship between intelligence officer Max Vatan and French Resistance member Marianne Beausejour, from their first encounter with each other in North Africa and the resultant passionate affair through to their reunion in 1940s London. Allied is directed by Robert Zemeckis, most famous for the cult classic Forrest Gump in 1994 and known as a pioneer of special effects – so some impressive recreation of wartime atmosphere can hopefully be expected.

Throughout the trailer Marion Cotillard undoubtedly steals the limelight, expertly portraying the two sides of her character. Alternatively a vivacious, glamorous socialite and a sharp, cool-headed and composed Resistance officer, she is the epitome of the wartime spy. In contrast, Brad Pitt’s character seems much more reserved; it’s difficult to glean much about Max Vatan from his appearance in the trailer, apart from a certain military competence and a talent for looking first thoughtful and then gravely concerned.

The slightly unusual pairing of Pitt and Cotillard is a refreshing take on the classic wartime espionage theme…

The danger and excitement of North Africa gives way to apparent marital bliss in London, before elements of paranoia and insecurity begin to creep in. The implication in the trailer is that one of the protagonists is a double agent, and a number of elements make it look more likely to be Beausejour than Vatan. We know that Cotillard is good at playing the femme fatale – her appearances in Macbeth, Inception and The Dark Knight Rises play tribute to this – so although this is an intriguing early hint, that plot-twist if enacted could seem a little predictable. Cotillard is in danger of being typecast and it would be interesting to see her doing something a bit different.

Overall, Allied looks promising; the slightly unusual pairing of Pitt and Cotillard – an old hand and a relative Hollywood newcomer – is a refreshing take on the classic wartime espionage theme. Paramount have announced a release date of 23rd November this year.

By Lydia Watson

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