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“The Green Knight” Trailer Highlights One of the Year’s Most Intriguing Films

“Oh, greatest of kings…let one of your knights try to land a blow against me. Indulge me in this game.” So says the Green Knight (Ralph Ineson), leveling the challenge that lies at the heart of writer/director David Lowery’s hotly-anticipated film. Who should take up the challenge but Gawain (Dev Patel), King Arthur’s headstrong nephew, a young would-be knight who might not lack courage, but he certainly lacks for epic tales to tell. In the official trailer for Lowery’s The Green Knight, we see the Green Knight issue the challenge, Gawain accepts, and then voila!—the latter delivers the killing blow, separating the Green Knight’s head from his body. But this is the only beginning of the story.

The Green Knight, it turns out, is not made of mortal stuff. The second part of his challenge was that after someone lands a blow against him, he gets to take his revenge a year later. Although Gawain decapitates him in the opening seconds of the trailer, the Green Knight survives, and rides off, laughing, holding his head. Intrigued yet?

This is the longest look yet we’ve had at Lowery’s film, and the vision displayed here is as haunting, beautiful, and beguiling as we’d expected from the director of the melancholy mini-masterpiece A Ghost Story. The mythical Green Knight isn’t the only wonder revealed here—there are giants, talking foxes, and more for Gawain to encounter on his quest. When he has a run-in with Joel Edgerton’s Lord, he explains the whole reason he’s taking all this on is “honor”—it’s why a knight does what he does, no matter how clearly fatal his decision is.

The Green Knight boasts a stellar cast. Joining Patel and Edgerton are Alicia Vikander, Sarita Choudhury, Sean Harris, Kate Dickie, Berry Keoghan, and Erin Kellyman (who just shined in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier).

Check out the trailer below. The Green Knight hits theaters on July 30.

Here’s the official synopsis from A24:

An epic fantasy adventure based on the timeless Arthurian legend, The Green Knight tells the story of Sir Gawain (Dev Patel), King Arthur’s reckless and headstrong nephew, who embarks on a daring quest to confront the eponymous Green Knight, a gigantic emerald-skinned stranger and tester of men. Gawain contends with ghosts, giants, thieves, and schemers in what becomes a deeper journey to define his character and prove his worth in the eyes of his family and kingdom by facing the ultimate challenger. From visionary filmmaker David Lowery comes a fresh and bold spin on a classic tale from the knights of the round table.

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