This Friday, the Civil War drama Free State of Jones hits theaters. Starring Matthew McConaughey as well as his pretty stellar beard, it tells the story of Newton Knight, a man who orchestrated a rebellion against the Confederacy in Mississipi. Today a special five-minute preview of the film was released — essentially a full-length scene from the film — giving viewers an advanced look at what it has in store for them this weekend. And, in a week that has already given us one particularly memorable battle sequence, it manages to deliver in full.
The scene shows McConaughey’s Knight guiding a young soldier through a chaotic battlefield, attempting to find cover amidst a hail of gunfire. If his demeanor throughout the scene is any indicator, things would appear to be taking place near the tail end of the Battle of Corinth, after which Knight historically decided to break away from the Confederacy. It’s a well-orchestrated scene, depicting the battle not as a thrilling clashing of forces, but rather as a scrappy, chaotic ordeal completely devoid of glory. McConaughey’s performance in particular looks to be a strong one as well.
Free State of Jones hits theaters this Friday, going up against the impending Independence Day: Resurgence. It is directed by former Hunger Games director Gary Ross and also stars Keri Russell, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Mahershala Ali.