Is there life after death? It doesn’t explicitly say so in this trailer, but The Discovery apparently posits that, yes, there is, and here’s some math showing how. When we previously reported on the upcoming Netflix film, all we knew about it was that Jason Segel had joined the project to play Rooney Mara’s love interest, a man who “somehow scientifically proves that there’s an afterlife.” (Robert Redford, Jesse Plemons, and Riley Keough are also part of the cast.) Mara’s character also reportedly has a “tragic past,” but if the above trailer is any indication, her present is looking pretty damn troubled, as well. The strains of Roy Orbison’s “Only The Lonely” kick things off, paired with images that conjure up your standard twee indie romantic drama, albeit one populated by very famous people. Which lasts for 30 seconds, when the music shudders, and everything starts to get very unsettling.
It’s a great trailer, revealing almost nothing while suggesting a mood of creeping dread and nightmarish intrigue, thanks to some evocative imagery, like Mara rising up from the waves. It’s not surprising the plot is unusual and mysterious, given the film comes from the writer-director team of Charlie McDowell and Justin Lader, who also created delightful indie puzzlebox The One I Love. It involves technology, death, and great actors, which is also a description of Johnny Depp’s relatives trying to pretend they enjoyed Transcendence. The Discovery premieres on the streaming service March 31.