'Branded' Trailer Brings 'They Live' Into the 21st Century

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Roadside Attractions

The premise of 'They Live' is that aliens have taken over Earth and domesticate humans by using the media as mind control, and it's a narrative that's evergreen and well worth ripping off. The premise of 'Branded' is that corporations have invaded peoples lives unknowingly, and after watching the trailer for it you get the sense that the filmmakers wanted to take the ideas of 'They Live' further.

The film comes from newcomers Jamie Bradshaw and Aleksandr Dulerayn, who wrote and directed the film, and stars Ed Stoppard, and features familiar faces like Max Von Sydow, Jeffery Tambor and Leelee Sobieski. What's fascinating about this trailer is that it's obviously done outside of the studio system, and yet there is a scale here that is impressive, and a message that might be obvious, but (perhaps) needs to be said.

As fans of speculative science fiction, this may be a little bit too Andrew Niccol-ish, but it looks weird and interesting. How many films feature corporate logos are acting out scenes from 'King Kong?' It makes us curious if it works, and if they can make their commentary about the invasive nature of branding without making it feel like eating vegetables. But for a movie that's coming out of nowhere, it's definitely got our attention.

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