James Franco's going back to his roots.
The trailer for Palo Alto, based on the actor's collection of short stories, is online (via Vulture) and finds Franco starring as a soccer coach who initiates a relationship—and quite possibly a lot of trouble—with youngster Emma Roberts.
"I'm older and I know that there aren't a lot of good things around and I know that you are really good," the 35-year-old actor's creepy character, Mr. B, tells his much-younger star player in the brief teaser.
Beyond Mr. B's creepy come-on to his team's striker, there's more to the tale than that. The film also follows a bunch of high school boys "looking for trouble," as a title card notes, apparently by doing whippets and committing other teenage mischief.
The film, adapted and directed by Gia Coppola—yes, the 25-year-old granddaughter of Francis Ford Coppola—feels like a tribute to her filmmaking aunt, Sofia Coppola, with its lilting musical score and montage of fresh-faced young people living out privileged lives in this wealthy suburb.
Val Kilmer shows up as a teacher, possibly not as bad a one as Franco's character—though he does go to the trouble of rewriting Roberts' character's paper—as does Gia's great aunt, Talia Shire, in an unspecified role. Playing one of the teens in the ensemble, by the way, is Kilmer's 18-year-old son Jack, who bears a close resemblance to the Top Gunner.
Palo Alto is scheduled to premiere at the Telluride Film Festival this weekend. No word yet on a general release.