Julianne Moore strikes a chord of romance and tension in the haunting trailer for her upcoming Paul Weitz-directed hostage drama Bel Canto.
Based on Ann Patchett’s novel of the same name, the film follows a Japanese mogul (Ken Watanabe) as he ventures to South America for a prospective business venture. While there, he attends a lavish party where his favorite opera singer Roxane Coss (Moore) is set to perform. During Roxane’s set, however, a group of gun-wielding, anti-government rebels storm the event and take hostages in the name of freeing their imprisoned peers.
After a few tense, bloody exchanges between opposing sides (and as media attention swarms outside the estate’s gates), the hostages and their captors form a peculiar bond, discovering their shared humanity in the process.
“We need to free our brothers and sisters. We will not surrender to these government criminals…. We need her now more than ever,” the guerrilla leader says in the preview, referencing the power of Roxane’s voice (dubbed by real-life soprano Renée Fleming in the movie), which he plans to project from inside their self-made fortress as a means to draw attention to their cause. “When they hear the beauty of your voice, perhaps they will find a solution.”
Originally published in 2001, Patchett’s novel was inspired by the 1996 crisis at the Japanese embassy in Lima, Peru, which resulted in the deaths of 14 members of the Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement, two soldiers, and one hostage.
Bel Canto opens in a limited number of theaters beginning Sept. 14, followed by an on-demand release on Sept. 21. Watch the film’s full trailer above.