Most adaptations of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein famously feature a scene that doesn’t appear in the novel. It’s an infamous moment when an angry mob chases the “monster” through the streets. We don’t know if that exact hunt will happen in the next film to take inspiration from the sci-fi horror classic, director Yorgos Lanthimos’ Poor Things, but we doubt it. Not because we’re positive it won’t take place, but rather because his creation is far more likely to dance through the streets instead of running. The film’s newest trailer focuses on the growth of Emma Stone’s Bella Baxter, a woman who must learn how to live so she can truly live.

Even if we didn’t know this movie comes from the director of The Lobster and The Favourite we think we’d probably be able to guess he’s behind it. This visually stunning film looks weird and surreal, but also entirely humanistic. And it’s themes of individualism, family, feminism, bigotry, love, and self-discovery should make for a rich story. Plus it has Willem Dafoe playing a mad scientist with a reconstructed face. That’s more than enough to get us into a theater seat.

What exactly is happening here? This is the film’s official synopsis from Searchlight Pictures.

From filmmaker Yorgos Lanthimos and producer Emma Stone comes the incredible tale and fantastical evolution of Bella Baxter (Stone), a young woman brought back to life by the brilliant and unorthodox scientist Dr. Godwin Baxter (Willem Dafoe). Under Baxter’s protection, Bella is eager to learn. Hungry for the worldliness she is lacking, Bella runs off with Duncan Wedderburn (Mark Ruffalo), a slick and debauched lawyer, on a whirlwind adventure across the continents. Free from the prejudices of her times, Bella grows steadfast in her purpose to stand for equality and liberation.

MArk Ruffalo and his mustache holds Emma Stone in a puffy dress in an image from Poor Things
Searchlight Pictures

Poor Things also stars Ramy Youssef, Jerrod Carmichael, and Christopher Abbott. It dances its way into theaters this fall, September 8. If it lives up to the promise of this trailer there won’t be any angry mobs leaving the theater.

Originally published on June 8, 2023.