“Sometimes you have to change your scenery to change your life.” Here’s our first look at the drama from director Tom Tykwer, and the trailer gets off to a quirky start, with Tom Hanks channeling David Byrne amid puffs of purple smoke. Hanks stars in A Hologram for the King as a struggling American businessman who travels to Saudi Arabia to sell its king on a new technology: “the three-dimensional holographic meeting system.” Once there, our hero is stymied by endless Middle Eastern bureaucracy, a perpetually absent monarch and a suspicious growth on his back. Baffled by local customs and such — “the deserts and the camels and the tents!” — he gets help from a wise-cracking cab driver (Alexander Black) and starts a culture-clashing relationship with a Saudi doctor (Homeland alum Sarita Choudhury).
Sidse Babett Knudsen, Ben Whishaw and Tom Skerritt also star in the film, which will have its world premiere at Tribeca next month ahead of its April 22 theatrical bow via Lionsgate/Roadside Attractions/Saban Films. Tykwer wrote the screenplay from Dave Eggers’ 2012 novel. Have a look at the trailer, and tells us what you think.