Don’t let the title fool you: This isn’t a retelling of Shakespeare from the woman’s point of view. It’s a dark and unsettling drama that takes all the brutality, sex, and intrigue that the Bard would leave offstage and makes it viscerally clear. As described by the press release, the film follows a young woman (Florence Pugh) who is “stifled by her loveless marriage to a bitter man twice her age, and his cold, unforgiving family. When she embarks on a passionate affair with a young worker on her husband’s estate, a force is unleashed inside her so powerful that she will stop at nothing to get what she wants.” As the above trailer makes clear, some turbulent emotions are roiling inside the lead character, and the events that unfold are going to trigger them. (There’s also a full-length trailer for this film out there, but it’s one of those shitty ones that give away the majority of the story, so maybe best to ignore it.)
The film is loosely based on a 19th century novella called Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk District and has already been adapted into an opera, so it will be interesting to see what first-time feature film director William Oldroyd brings to the material, outside of relocating the setting from Russia to England. Early reviews have been largely glowing—as the trailer’s “the most radical movie of the season” copy implies—and the images shown here suggest a potent, Hitchcockian stew. We’ll get answers when Lady Macbeth opens April 28.