Six years ago, Amandla Stenberg made her big debut alongside a fresh-faced Jennifer Lawrence in The Hunger Games, a feature film adaptation of a popular Young Adult series about a determined teenage girl who started a revolution in a dystopian society. Now, Stenberg is ready to lead her own youth movement in The Darkest Minds, yet another YA novel-turned-movie that hopes to capture some of Katniss Everdeen's magic at the box office.
But with Jennifer Yuh Nelson at the helm — and the very-real teens who are currently at the forefront of their own revolution making headlines — The Darkest Minds feels incredibly of the moment. "The only people who would ever help us are us," one teen says to another in the newly released trailer.
Set in a dystopian future where the majority of children were wiped out by a mysterious disease and those who survived developed superpowers, the film follows Ruby (Stenberg), a 16-year-old girl who happens to be "among the most powerful." A girl with her destructive abilities could make for a powerful weapon, which obviously puts her at risk.
After escaping a government camp where superpowered children like her are detained and assigned colors based on their abilities — Red (pyrokinesis), Orange (mind control), Yellow (power over electricity), Blue (teleknesis), and Green (heightened intelligence) — Ruby joins a group of scrappy teens on the run and headed "to a place where kids can live together on the outside," otherwise known as East River. But is this teen utopia as good as it seems?
Of course, they have to evade the government, and the fearsome bounty hunter (Gwendoline Christie) who turns escapees in for money, if they ever want to find out. Judging from all of the explosions and car chases, that's easier said than done.
At least there's some good, old-fashioned romance (and all of the angst that comes with it) to take Ruby's mind off the impending war ahead.
The Darkest Minds hits theaters August 3, 2018.