Rebel in the Rye delves into the story behind one of the most famous novels of all time. JD Salinger appears to have led a testing life, returning home from World War II to counter traumatic stress disorder and then frustrations with a dull lifestyle. His excitable, narcissistic intolerance of the mundane drives him to succeed, with his college tutor Whit Burnett noticing great potential. It tells a taxing personal story of a man, which ultimately arrives at the publication of The Catcher in the Rye.
Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max) plays Salinger in perhaps his biggest role to date. From the trailer recently released, the British actor looks capable of enveloping a complex character, showing how fast he is becoming a Hollywood regular. He is joined by Kevin Spacey, who plays demanding Burnett. It is an interesting duo; one which celebrates both youth and experience, and the chemistry they strike could be a key feature of the movie.
The movie seems to capture all the chaos and colour of America in the early 1900s. The music, bars and cars pinpoint the time Salinger lived, and it looks like an exciting time. The glamour of American culture, however, is brutally interrupted by the outbreak of World War II. This forces Salinger into anguish and the experience aggrieves him. Though without his time at war, perhaps Catcher in the Rye would not have taken shape the way it did.
A displeased father and an elegant love interest fill in the gaps, adding a more human element to the plot. Victor Garber (Titanic, Argo) plays Sol Salinger and Zoey Deutch (Why Him) plays Oona O’Neill. Some iconic figures in American cultural history look to pop up.
Danny Stronger (Empire) directs. Rebel in the Rye is produced by those who created Silver Linings Playbook, Milk and American Beauty. A story that has been untold could very well be worth telling. An insight into one of the great American authors should be intriguing.
Rebel in the Rye will be released September 2017