Sunday, August 5, 2012

Beasts of the Southern Wild - Movie Review

Since my guilty pleasure is reading Entertainment Weekly, I often read about and get interested in a movie and wait for it to come. Such it was with "Beasts of the Southern Wild".

It is clearly a favorite with the critics =getting A+. 4* etc.
I have been told "you like everything" but apparently not. And I usually like the 'arty' films but not this one. Perhaps the camera technique distracted too much.

This is the story of a young 6 year old girl named Hushpuppy played by Quvenzhane Wallis. This is a remarkable performance of a young girl and a ragtag group of people who live in the "Bathtub", a group of islands on the wrong side of a levee in the Gulf of Mexico. This group of people are as far away from what we know as civilization than any group I have seen in film. They drink hard and support each other in hard times after the storms and the attempts by officials to 'rescue' them. They live in derelict shacks crowded with junk and animals that serve as pets and food. Hushpuppy lives with her father who tries but fails to take care of his young daughter.

As much as I admired the performance of the young actress, I did not like this movie. The overcrowded set and poverty got to me. The story was too filled with what I think were philosophical statements that only were confusing.  Most significantly I really disliked the photography technique.

If you know me or read my blog reviews you know that I dislike the unsteady and extreme close-up style of filming that is so popular these days. In addition to this, the director added a new technique of -in focus, out of focus, in focus out of focus filming that was very unsettling.

I think this is going to be a like or leave it movie. IMO- leave it.

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