When I last posted about Ang Lee's Taking Woodstock, I called it a "gay-themed project" and speculated that the film might be about how the main character's involvement in Woodstock "served as redemption for giving up his own artistic ambitions and living most of his life in the closet." Now that I've seen the trailer, which you can watch below, that pompous description seems laughably wrong-headed. This won't just be "lighter" than much of Lee's previous work, as I also wrote; it's a full-on slapstick comedy, complete with a classic underdog storyline, and showdowns between hippies and uptight old fogeys.

Mainstream comedies tend to be under-directed. Even the Team Apatow films, while generally outstanding, don't exactly distinguish themselves formally or stylistically. But Lee is so damn deliberate and meticulous, with every shot and every cut calculated just so, that I'm really curious to see how he handles something this lightweight and apparently raucous. It certainly looks like a new Ang Lee mode; his last film that could be called a comedy was 1993's wistful Eat Drink Man Woman, and Woodstock seems to be worlds away from that film. Before that, Lee made a Taiwanese film called The Wedding Banquet that sounds like it might be closer, but I haven't seen it.

Anyway, I think Demetri Martin, who stars and introduces the trailer, is an extraordinarily funny guy (anyone seen his show on Comedy Central?), and how awesome is it to see someone other than Christopher Guest cast Eugene Levy in an actual movie as opposed to the latest direct-to-DVD American Pie "sequel"? This looks like fun; it's set to be released August 14th.