Trailer: Warren Beatty Is Howard Hughes In RULES DON’T APPLY


It has been a while since Warren Beatty has either been in front of or behind the camera so his return to both with Rules Don’t Apply is indeed a welcome one. Especially with what the newly released trailer below shows us of a farce set in the era of classic Hollywood. Sure this is territory that the Coen Brothers played with earlier this year in with Hail Caesar!, but Beatty appears to be going for a story that is a comedic love triangle between himself as Howard Hughes, future young Han Solo Alden Ehrenreich as a studio chauffeur and Lily Collins as a young, up-and-coming starlet. And with a parade of great actors known for both dramatic and comedic chops like Alec Baldwin, Annette Bening, Candice Bergen, Matthew Broderick, Dabney Coleman, Steve Coogan, Megan Hilty, Oliver Platt and Martin Sheen in the mix one has several good reasons to look forward to the films November 23 release.

The only problem is the poster that has been released for the film. It certainly doesn’t say “comedy” to me. The design suggests that the film is more of a drama than the trailer does. So why the disconnect between the two? One has to be the proper representation of the film. Is it a comedy with a terribly misleading poster or a drama with a terribly misleading trailer? Does the film land somewhere in-between?

Here is the official studio synopsis –

An aspiring young actress (Lily Collins) and her ambitious young driver (Alden Ehrenreich) struggle hopefully with the absurd eccentricities of the wildly unpredictable billionaire (Warren Beatty), who they work for.

It’s Hollywood, 1958. Small town beauty queen and devout Baptist virgin Marla Mabrey (Collins), under contract to the infamous Howard Hughes (Beatty), arrives in Los Angeles. At the airport, she meets her driver Frank Forbes (Ehrenreich), who is engaged to be married to his 7th grade sweetheart and is a deeply religious Methodist. Their instant attraction not only puts their religious convictions to the test, but also defies Hughes’ #1 rule: no employee is allowed to have any relationship whatsoever with a contract actress. Hughes’ behavior intersects with Marla and Frank in very separate and unexpected ways, and as they are drawn deeper into his bizarre world, their values are challenged and their lives are changed.


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About Rich Drees 7078 Articles
A film fan since he first saw that Rebel Blockade Runner fleeing the massive Imperial Star Destroyer at the tender age of 8 and a veteran freelance journalist with twenty-five years experience writing about film and pop culture. He is a member of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle.
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February 17, 2017 12:57 pm

I enjoyed every minute of this 126 minute movie. Great acting, a compelling story line (actually three intertwined stories), and a very satisfying ending. Beatty was incredible, he nailed Howard Hughes’s eccentricities without devolving into parody and satire, a totally believable performance. Also compelling were the perfomances of Ehrenreich, Collins, and Sorvino.