Beasts of the Southern Wild

Movie review by S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media
Beasts of the Southern Wild Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 14+

Devastatingly moving drama has harsh truths, whimsy, wisdom.

PG-13 2012 93 minutes

Parents say

age 12+

Based on 8 reviews

Kids say

age 13+

Based on 18 reviews

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Community Reviews

age 15+

Tough and emotional, but worth watching

It took me a second viewing to appreciate this movie more, and man did it really help. Hushpuppy and her father, Wink, go through tough times and situations together, but they each try to help the other. What was tough about it was that Hushpuppy is only 6, and Wink is an alcoholic (there are a number of scenes where he is seen chugging alcohol), so he treats her roughly (he gives her some slaps), but really wants to help her make it through the tough times. Ultimately, Hushpuppy's friendships with others in her community, despite their intense poverty, gives her hope to move forward with her life and be strong. In addition to the issues mentioned above, there is also some disturbing peril with Hushpuppy (including being in a burning home), and language problems (including an f-bomb). The atmosphere is really depressing to experience, especially considering these people go through intense poverty, but I think that the messages of having a strong community make watching this movie a worthwhile viewing with mature teens. 7.1/10

This title has:

Great messages
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
age 9+

Beasts Of The Southern Wild (2012) Review by Shivom Oza – Stunning; Visually And Emotionally!

Winner at various International film festivals, notably Cannes and Sundance, Benh Zeitlin's ‘Beasts of the Southern Wild’ was screened at the 14th Mumbai Film Festival as a part of the 'International Competition' Category. The film is about a six-year-old child, Hushpuppy, and the story of her coming-of-age. The film, visually, is magnificent. Conceptually, it is an excellent debut feature. However, the film takes its time to grow on you. Hushpuppy and her father live on an island that is cut away from the rest of the 'developed' regions in the vicinity. They survive on sea animals, possess an almost-cannibalistic lifestyle and are perpetual go-getters. However, Hushpuppy's world comes crashing down as her home (or as she calls it, her 'bathtub') is caught amidst a storm. Nature shows her fury as not only do their permanent home and their other makeshift homes keep crumbling, but they get attacked by pre-historic creatures. The film, kind of, tries to portray this 'end-of-civilization' scenario, and does it very successfully too. To add to Hushpuppy's woes, her father has been diagnosed with a deadly disease. So, the little girl, who believes in the concept of 'THE UNIVERSE' being almost a part of an individual's being, takes it upon herself to battle these dangerous odds. In the meantime, she sets out to find her mother, whose love she has been deprived of since childhood. ‘Beasts of the Southern Wild’ is a wonderful attempt by a first-time director. Benh Zeitlin could have kept the narrative a bit more linear but then, in the end, when the pieces fall together, you have a good film at hand. The kid, Quvenzhane' Wallis, is exceptional and so is the rest of the cast. The music by Dan Romer and Benh Zeitlin too, is phenomenal. Ben Richardson has wonderfully captured the visuals, adding to the 'drama' of the film. The film is about the coming-of-age of the young girl. A tale exceptionally put together by a debutante director. Although, the film will take its time to grow on you, it will leave you with a smile. Shivom Oza

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

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