The Roaring Twenties! The words alone are enough to inspire most people break out the ol’ raccoon coat and start doing the Charleston—so imagine how excited we are at the prospect of a trip to America’s most glamorous decade, led by none other than Stephen King! Writer-director Zak Hilditch has turned King’s novella 1922 into a feature-length movie, and, judging from the trailer, it has more Jazz Age eye candy packed into each and every frame than any film since Midnight in Paris.
Molly Parker stars as a small-town flapper with big-city dreams, while Thomas Jane plays Scott to her Zelda, as their marriage is tested by the social and political changes that were sweeping the nation: women voters, prohibition, “talkies,” automobiles, the rise of mass media, and of course, the invention of a little cocktail called the “Hanky-Panky” at the Savoy Hotel in London. In the aftermath of World War I, all the old norms and boundaries seemed to have vanished: Practically the only thing that wasn’t allowed was listening to Vaughn Monroe’s 1944 recording of “The Very Thought of You,” which is heavily featured in 1922’s trailer, because not even the most liberated flappers and philosophers were emboldened enough to break the laws of time and space. The song wasn’t even written until 1934, when it was most famously recorded by Ray Noble and his Orchestra, with Al Bowlly on vocals.
Which is presumably what it’s doing in the trailer in the first place, because that same year, Noble and Bowlly also recorded “Midnight, the Stars and You,” which fellow Stephen King adapter Stanley Kubrick used to great effect at the end of The Shining. (In that film, Bowlly’s voice was meant to evoke a party at the Overlook on July 4, 1921, so if the makers of 1922 had ponied up for the original recording, their soundtrack choice would be a little less of an anachronism than Kubrick’s.) “The Very Thought of You” topped out at #6 on the charts in 1934, which means using Monroe’s version is the chronological equivalent of taking the #6 hit of 2007 (“Before He Cheats,” by Carrie Underwood), finding a recording from about a decade later (the 2015 a cappella version in Pitch Perfect 2, for instance), and then putting it in the trailer for a movie called 1995. In other words, the trailer’s soundtrack is the perfect embodiment of the footloose and fancy-free spirit that defined the Jazz Age. So take the Duesenberg to your favorite speakeasy, stock up on bathtub gin, and get ready to party like it’s, well, not so much a specific year, but old-timey days, you know?