Bleecker Street has released a new trailer for the upcoming drama Breathe, which marks the directorial debut of Andy Serkis. Based on a true story, the film stars Andrew Garfield as Robin Cavendish, a young man who in 1958 contracted polio and became paralyzed from the neck down, requiring a respirator to breathe. At the time, mobility for patients on a respirator was non-existent, and we watch as Cavendish struggles to live through his new condition and as his wife, played by Claire Foy, pushes him to adapt and innovate according to his new situation.
The choice of material is a curious one for Serkis with which to make his directorial debut, but I caught the film at TIFF (read my review here) and it is a handsomely crafted tearjerker. Working with cinematographer Robert Richardson, Serkis conjures some truly gorgeous imagery and does a swell job handling the great performances from Garfield and Foy. My major issue with the film came down to the story, as it was almost too nice to the point that the film lacked dramatic stakes. The Cavendishes, as portrayed in the film, are almost always cheerful and upbeat—which is certainly a neat thing, but in the context of a film it becomes a bit monotonous.
Regardless, Breathe is definitely worth checking out for the performances and Serkis’ work behind the camera, and you may find it works better for you than it did for me. Check out the new trailer below. Tom Hollander and Hugh Bonneville also star. Breathe opens in theaters on October 13th.