Bustling with ideas and resplendent visuals…

 ‘Beasts of the Southern Wild’ is a must-see film – tickets available for Wed 24 April, book yourself a treat NOW. If you’ve never been to FILMBOX, now is the perfect time! Members can book tickets now and non-members can book from 15 April (click image to your right for trailer)

Dir: Benh Zeitlin; starring: Quvenzhané Wallis, Dwight Henry (2012, USA, 12A cert, 93 min)

Above: 30-yr old New York-born co-writer and director Benh Zeitlin.

Few American debuts in recent years have announced a talent as singular as that of Benh Zeitlin, the blazingly gifted director and co-writer of ‘Beasts of the Southern Wild’. A contained explosion of imaginative feeling, this dippy and spectacular plunge into magic realism has been picking up prizes around the world, and won the Camera d’Or award for best first film at Cannes. It bustles with ideas, resplendent visuals and a battered yet proud humanity. On all fronts, it’s simply unmissable.

Much of the attention has focused on the remarkable lead performance of Quvenzhané Wallis, six years old when it was shot: she plays Hushpuppy, doughty resident of a deprived and isolated bayou community called the Bathtub, on the coastal side of Louisiana’s levees. Her mother has left, and she lives only half in the care of her sick father (Dwight Henry), whose rusted-out shack is a distance away from the trailer she sleeps in.” Tim Robey (Daily Telegraph – 18/1/13) http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film/filmreviews/9617493/Beasts-of-the-Southern-Wild-review.html

Benh Zeitlin’s debut feature is part film, part hallucination: a ripe and gamey piece of what you might call Apocalyptic Southern Gothic, ambitious and flawed but sprinting with energy. It’s set at the time of the Katrina catastrophe – though it could as well be happening hundreds of years in the future, when much-prophecied climate calamities have come to pass. At other times it looks like some sort of modern-dress re-enactment of the distant biblical flood… ‘Beasts of the Southern Wild’ is a vividly poetic and maybe even therapeutic response to one of the most painful and mortifying episodes in modern American history, second only to 9/11. After Katrina, the television public in the US were astonished to see news coverage that looked like a charity appeal for a very poor country. But nobody in this film wants your charity. What’s interesting is its defiant, libertarian streak” Peter Bradshaw (The Guardian 18/10/12)

http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2012/oct/18/beast-southern-wild-review

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