There's a Battle of Wits Over Keira Knightley in 'A Dangerous Method' Trailer

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Back in the 1970s, David Cronenberg solidified himself as a master of horror, specifically of the venereal variety. While his taste for fantastical, bodily mutilation seems to have subsided in recent years, his work has always contained a hefty helping of impassioned creepiness.

But his latest, "A Dangerous Method," appears to pull no punches -- the first trailer has debuted on Empire and cranks that off-kilter sexuality up to eleven.

The movie stars Michael Fassbender and Viggo Mortensen (now a three-time Cronenberg vet, previously starring in "The History of Violence" and "Eastern Promises") as the famed psychiatrists Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud (respectively), who find themselves in a bitter feud over a beautiful female patient. Keira Knightley plays Sabina Spielrein, who began as Jung's patient until the two fell in love. Freud catches his former student in the web of deceit and exploits him for his own gain. The threesome's entangled relationships form the core drama of "A Dangerous Method."

The movie is based on the play "The Talking Cure," by Academy Award-winning writer Christopher Hampton, which in itself is based on the non-ficiton book "A Most Dangerous Method." If that doesn't sound particularly rousing wait until you see the trailer. The short spot is chock full scenes that pop, with Fassbender, Mortensen and Knightley doing what they do best: acting the hell out of their parts.

"A Dangerous Method" will premiere at this year's Venice Film Festival and make its way into theaters sometime before the end of the year -- ready to sweep up a few Oscars, for sure.