First Trailer for Guy Ritchie’s “The Covenant” Finds Jake Gyllenhaal Paying a Battlefield Debt

The first trailer for writer/director Guy Ritchie’s latest film, The Covenant, is here, and it packs a punch. The film stars Jake Gyllenhaal as John Kinley, a sergeant deployed on his last tour in Afghanistan. Disaster strikes and John’s facing certain death, but he’s saved by a local interpreter named Ahmed (Dal Salim), who goes above and beyond to literally drag, push, and carry John to safety. His efforts are practically superhuman, and while John can barely remember a thing that happened, he knows he owes this man his life.

And that debt will need to be paid, as The Covenant finds Ahmed and his family in danger after his heroic effort to save John. Being an interpreter for the United States Military is a phenomenally risky job for a local, and what makes matters worse is that despite risking his life to save an American soldier, the American government won’t do the same for Ahmed. So, John has no choice but to defy his own government and go on a rescue mission. Needless to say, it’s an extremely dangerous, possibly suicidal decision, but as the trailer makes clear, John feels he has no choice in the matter.

This isn’t the first time Gyllenhaal has depicted a soldier, nor one suffering from mental trauma. Director Jim Sheridan’s Brothers found Gyllenhaal in a film that looked squarely at Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, while Sam Mendes’ Jarhead depicted the Gulf War as a meandering, isolating and often dull experience. The Covenant is an entirely different kind of film, part action-epic, part meditation on the costs of war and the role Afghanis played in helping the U.S. Military and the debt owed, but rarely paid, for their efforts. It’s also unique for Ritchie, a man who has crafted some of the more kinetic, exuberant films of the last two decades, but never a film like this. Unlike his previous efforts, The Covenant isn’t taking a comic approach to violence. In fact, it looks like a sober, if action-packed, war epic.

Check out the trailer below. The Covenant hits theaters on April 21.

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Featured image: Dar Salim (left) as Ahmed and Jake Gyllenhaal (right) as Sgt. John Kinley in THE COVENANT, directed by Guy Ritchie, a Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures film. Credit: Christopher Raphael / Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures © 2023 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Inc. All Rights Reserved.


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