Summary: This gritty cinéma vérité drama seems to inspire love-it or hate-it reactions. Either way, it’s a memorable little film that offers, as its heroes, a rugged but fun-loving group that doesn’t just march to a different drummer from the rest of us. They’re their OWN drummers.
Conclusion: The dreamlike drama Beasts of the Southern Wild will not be everyone's cup of tea, but this little movie stands out as one of the boldest and most original of the year. Fox's Blu-ray combo pack isn't anything out of the ordinary, the feature presentation not quite as polished as those of bigger contemporaries and the extras lending some fitting insight to this unorthodox and highly interesting production.
Conclusion: 'Beasts' is one of the most powerful films you'll see all year, which includes one of the most commanding performances ever given by a child actor. This is a gem of a movie and deserves to be discussed and dissected by those who see it. It will challenge you to think and feel in a way that movies rarely require of their audience.
Excerpt: I originally went into Beasts of the Southern Wild with no idea as to what I was going to see. I had only heard about it being very well received at Sundance and Cannes, but little in the way of what the film was actually about. Vague descriptions used key words like “fantasy” and “Katrina”, but I still did not have much of an “in”, before sitting in my seat getting to watch the film for myself.
Excerpt: Hushpuppy, a slow-to-smile 6-year-old girl played by Quvenzhané Wallis, lives in the Bathtub, a proudly independent pocket of Louisiana where a handful of residents exist on what nature and the scraps of civilization provide. Some of the Bathtub’s residents, like Wallis and her troubled, ailing father (Dwight Henry), dwell in trailers mounted above ground to fight the rising tides, and eat food culled from the animals that live alongside them, or pulled from the ocean,...
Excerpt: At Sundance this year, first-time filmmaker Benh Zeitlin won praise for his imaginative fantasy tale set against the backdrop of a Post-Katrina New Orleans, while his 6-year-old ingénue Quvenzhané Wallis was the talk of the festival. The accolades carried on through Cannes, where the feisty feature was heralded in particular for its majestic cinematography.
Summary: A surprise hit at Cannes and Sundance, Benh Zeitlin's Oscar-tipped debut is a film about children that's most definitely not for children. Meandering and confusing but brushed with magic, it pits six-year-old heroine Hushpuppy (Quvenzhané Wallis), against dangers both real and imagined, acknowledging the fact that, to a child, they are one and the same.