Seven years ago, writer-director John Carney's musical drama Once became an indie hit as it explored the lives of two musicians and the emotional impact of creating music together. Carney's latest, Begin Again, explored similar themes, as evidenced by it debuting last fall at the Toronto International Film Festival under its original title Can a Song Save Your Life?.
"Many of the big decisions of my life were made with the record playing," Carney told THR last September, days after the movie screened. "What I would like to see people come away with for this film is music is integral to the way we communicate and the way we make decisions."
Like Once, Begin Again focuses on a music-making couple, this time played by Keira Knightley and Adam Levine, who move to New York as a songwriting team but soon break up. Knightley's Gretta is left to pick up the pieces on her own until she meets up with a down-on-his-luck music producer (Mark Ruffalo) who wants to produce her music. Instead of exploring the intimacy of making music, Begin Again, as its new title suggests, is about whether both can find retribution, and the newly-released trailer infuses that journey with humor, most memorably with a Jerry Maguire reference and Cee-Lo Green's cameo.