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Watch a Bear Eat Leo DiCaprio in THE REVENANT Trailer

Between TIFF and various early screenings, the word is out on most of the major releases set to debut before the end of the year. Excepting Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight, the biggest remaining question mark belongs to Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman follow-up, The Revenant. The Nerdist team took a look at the expressionist Western’s teaser trailer when it surfaced back in July, but with minimal dialogue included in the clip, the film has remained shrouded in mystery. Until today, that is: 20th Century Fox has unveiled a new trailer for The Revenant, and its fleeting snatches of script from stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hardy have begun to clarify the nature of this characteristically ambitious project.

Iñárritu reunites with his Birdman cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki for another fluid vision wrought in acrobatic long-takes—this time moving the action back in time a couple centuries and out of New York, into the unforgiving terrain of the unsettled West. DiCaprio plays real-life trapper Hugh Glass, who has a tough go of life on the range. First, his lips get all chapped and raw, which is just the worst. Then, just when things couldn’t possibly get more hopeless, he’s mauled by a bear and left for dead by his companions! Against all odds, Glass survives both the bear encounter and abandonment, and vows to take revenge on the men who have wronged him. (A “revenant” is an old-school term for someone who’s returned from the dead.) Hardy co-stars as one of the no-goodniks who agreed to strip DiCaprio of his worldly possessions before leaving him behind.

Birdman wowed audiences and cleaned up at the Oscars last year, but many critics were cool on its aftertaste of self-importance. The Revenant, however, seems like an entirely different kettle of fish. Between Lubezki’s dizzying photography and the visions of madness within the wilderness, serious Aguirre, the Wrath of God vibes dominate this new trailer.

What say you? Will this tale of brutality and desperation be a family smash this Christmas? Weigh in below!

Image Credit: Twentieth Century Fox

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