The film is based around an extensive interview Morris conducted with Bannon, and the clip opens with the filmmaker comparing the right-wing extremist to Lucifer in Paradise Lost. Morris even offers up a line from the Milton poem, which Bannon cheerfully completes — “Better to reign in hell than serve in heaven” — before adding, “I love that line.”
The rest of the trailer finds Morris trying to wrap his head around Bannon’s worldview, from the influence of movies like Twelve O’Clock High to the ways he weaponized Breitbart and its comments section to fuel the rise of Donald Trump. Morris also challenges Bannon on the racism and xenophobia that’s central to his philosophy and mission, though Bannon unsurprisingly tries to dismiss those accusations while touting an unspecified revolution.
American Dharma is structured similarly to The Fog of War and The Unknown Known, Morris’ documentaries on former Secretaries of Defense, Robert S. McNamara and Donald Rumselfd, and the respective wars they oversaw (Vietnam and Iraq). American Dharma is set to open November 1st.