Beasts of the Southern Wild shows the other side of Hurricane Katrina. The Bathtub is a fictional town in the southern bayou, separated from New Orleans. Separated from any outside contact, the town lives off of the land. While they have some electricity, they teach the children how to survive for themselves.
Hushpuppy (Quvenzhané Wallis) is a tiny, incredibly strong six-year-old girl. Her mother left when she was much younger, and has been raised by her tough father (Dwight Henry). His main job in life is to teach her to live when he is gone. Watching this tiny girl fend for herself is astonishing.
The movie switches gears when the storm comes. While most people flee the town, destined to be ripped apart and flooded, Hushpuppy and her father, Wink, stay behind. With a small community made even smaller, the group learns to live off less than before.
This is a story about family, community and strength. It takes you back to a time when humans weren’t the king and shows how society has ruined our relationship with nature.
This movie was beautiful. Wallis is outstanding, her monologues were brilliant, and her relationship with Henry was touching. Henry played Wink with brutal strength and heartbreaking weakness. You find yourself cheering them on in the wild, even when help comes, the shelter seems less friendly and completely foreign.
The parallel story with the aurochs was also incredible. The beasts were enormous and startling. Matching their journey with Hushpuppy’s was genius.
The sets and music on this film were also amazing. The raft made out of the back of a pick up truck, the houses were incredibly interesting. The music was heartwarming and fit perfectly with every moment. I needed it the second I left the movie and cannot get enough of it.
This is a sensational film that should be seen by everyone. For Benh Zeitlin‘s first film he does an incredible job and it will be interesting to see what he does in the future.