Ellen Page is quite a versatile actress and she often takes on a variety of different roles. In The East she plays a member of a group of anarchists (The East) who launch attacks on unethical major corporations. Brit Marling also stars as Sarah, an operative for a private intelligence company known as Hiller-Brood. Their job is to work for major corporations and protect their interests. Sarah is given the task of infiltrating The East by impersonating a new recruit to the group. Unfortunately a spanner is thrown into the works when Sarah falls for the leader of the group. Will she be able to complete her objective or will she abandon her job?
The East is one of those movies where the undercover agent gets in too deep and is then conflicted about their loyalties. This movie trope is well worn but usually always interesting. There is always a certain amount of tension that builds as the audience tries to figure out if the undercover agent will have his/her cover blown. Apparently the director Zal Batmanglij and Marling spent two months working with the peaceful anti-consumerist Freeganism movement. They then wrote the screenplay for the movie based on their experiences and by taking inspiration from the thriller movie genre. The main plot is interesting and a nice take on the undercover agent movie. Such movies are usually always about cops who infiltrate gangs or secret agents like James Bond.
The trailer itself is action packed and depicts members of The East attacking their targets with no remorse. Ellen Page also provides a nice narration explaining how militant the group are which is very effective. The East will use any means necessary to achieve their objectives so Sarah will have to watch her back and avoid blowing her cover. The trailer successfully combines tension with menace and shows the members of The East as a force to be reckoned with.
The film also has a good supporting cast including Toby Kebbell, Julia Ormond, Patricia Clarkson and Alexander Skarsgård. Brit Marling is a rising star and she delivered good performances in films like Another Earth and Arbitrage. She is also in Robert Redford’s The Company You Keep which is another movie that involves a rather hardcore activist group.
The East has all the ingredients for a good movie and hopefully it can live up to the promise shown in the trailer.
The film will be released on May 31st so have a look at the trailer and share your thoughts.