Steve McQueen‘s sex addiction drama Shame may be getting tons of attention for its too-hot-for-the-MPAA explicitness, but having just seen the film I can attest that in truth, it’s less sexy than it is emotionally devastating. And it’s that pain that comes across most in this brand-new U.S. trailer for the film, which sees Carey Mulligan singing what may just be the loneliest version of “New York, New York” ever recorded as Michael Fassbender has lots of sad, soulless sex. Watch the trailer after the jump.

There’s not much in the way of actual new footage in the trailer, but it’s worth watching just to hear Mulligan’s heartbreaking version of the usually cheery number. As a side note, this should prove even to those who’ve yet to catch Shame that Mulligan’s got pipes. Are you watching, Coen Bros.? You’d be crazy not to give her a chance to show them off in Inside Llewyn Davis.

The trailer also offers a good look at Fox Searchlight’s strategy to push Shame for awards despite its NC-17 rating. Note the pullquotes comparing the film to Last Tango in Paris and Midnight Cowboy — both acclaimed classics that also earned X ratings in the days before the NC-17 category was created. Midnight Cowboy is in fact the only X-rated film to ever win an Oscar, picking up Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Adapted Screenplay in 1969.

In his second collaboration with McQueen (after 2008′s Hunger), Fassbender plays a sex-addicted New Yorker who finds his orderly life disrupted by the arrival of his lively but troubled younger sister (Mulligan). Fassbender is brilliant as always, but Mulligan deserves equal praise. She’s played vulnerable tons of times, but never quite like this, and her chemistry with Fassbender is downright searing.

Shame hits U.S. theaters December 2. Head to Apple to see this trailer in HD.

Synopsis:

Brandon (Michael Fassbender) is a New Yorker who shuns intimacy with women but feeds his desires with a compulsive addiction to sex. When his wayward younger sister (Carey Mulligan) moves into his apartment stirring memories of their shared painful past, Brandon’s insular life spirals out of control.

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