Since 2002, director Paul Greengrass has been alternating between two very different types of films: On the one hand, you have his hyperkinetic spy thrillers — represented best by his collaborations with Matt Damon on the Jason Bourne films — and on the other, you have his unflinching attempts to document catastrophe — United 93, Bloody Sunday, Captain Philips — that are generally pretty successful at what they set out to do. Now, he’s back with 22 July, a new film documenting the 2011 terrorist attack and mass shooting in Norway and its aftermath. As you might expect, it looks about as upsetting and somber as a film about an awful tragedy should be, and this preview will probably ruin your day.
Watch it here:
If you’re curious about the events the film depicts, we highly recommend you check out Åsne Seierstad’s One of Us, which is about as well-documented a book about a tragedy as Dave Cullen’s Columbine. But we’re sure that Greengrass and company will give you something more fulfilling than the CliffsNotes with this film. It is also a Netflix release, which is kind of surprising, given the typical quality of their output.
Here’s a synopsis via Netflix:
“In ’22 July,’ Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Paul Greengrass (‘Captain Phillips’, ‘United 93′) tells the true story of the aftermath of Norway’s deadliest terrorist attack. On 22 July 2011, 77 people were killed when a far-right extremist detonated a car bomb in Oslo before carrying out a mass shooting at a leadership camp for teens. ’22 July’ uses the lens of one survivor’s physical and emotional journey to portray the country’s path to healing and reconciliation.”
22 July will have its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival on September 5, and it’ll be screening several days later at TIFF, which is where we’ll hopefully see it. Otherwise, it’ll hit Netflix streaming on October 19.