The Coen Bros. Return to Comedy in ‘Hail, Caesar!’ Trailer

There are two kinds of Coen Brothers, and I’m not just talking about Joel and Ethan. Like the works of Shakespeare, the works of The Coen Brothers can be neatly divided into “comedies” and “tragedies,” and the only way to tell the difference is how depressed you are at the end of them. Because the Coens insert comedy into just about everything they do, but then sometimes they kill off most of the cast and destroy the personal lives of everyone else because life sucks when it isn’t being funny.

The Coen Brothers haven’t released a proper, balls out comedy since 2008’s Burn After Reading, and even that film had one hell of a body count so maybe it’s more appropriate to say that they haven’t gone completely silly on us since The Ladykillers in 2004. As such, we’re pretty darned curious about Hail, Caesar! 

Related: The Big List | The 50 Funniest Comedies of All Time

The press release describes it as “an all-star comedy set during the latter years of Hollywood’s Golden Age. Starring Josh Brolin, George Clooney, Ralph Fiennes, Tilda Swinton, Channing Tatum, Scarlett Johansson, Jonah Hill and Frances McDormand, Hail, Caesar! follows a single day in the life of a studio fixer who is presented with plenty of problems to fix.” 

The trailer premiered today, and it’s got its fair share of chuckles. But then again, the last time The Coen Brothers harkened back to old school Hollywood was that remake of The Ladykillers, which wasn’t very good, and before that it was the Preston Sturges-inspired Intolerable Cruelty, which stunk out loud. So for now, just watch the preview and decide for yourself how excited you are.

We’ll find out whether or not Hail, Caesar! rules when it arrives in theaters on February 5, 2016.


William Bibbiani (everyone calls him ‘Bibbs’) is Crave’s film content editor and critic. You can hear him every week on The B-Movies Podcast and watch him on the weekly YouTube series Most Craved and What the Flick. Follow his rantings on Twitter at @WilliamBibbiani.