Have you heard of Beasts of the Southern Wild? Here’s a rundown of the film as told by Sundance:
Hushpuppy, an intrepid six-year-old girl, lives with her father, Wink, in “the Bathtub,” a southern Delta community at the edge of the world. Wink’s tough love prepares her for the unraveling of the universe; for a time when he’s no longer there to protect her. When Wink contracts a mysterious illness, nature flies out of whack—temperatures rise, and the ice caps melt, unleashing an army of prehistoric creatures called aurochs. With the waters rising, the aurochs coming, and Wink’s health fading, Hushpuppy goes in search of her lost mother.
I like to think that when some sort of crazy phenomena happens, I’m quick to investigate and see what the fuss is about. And while I had seen the trailer for Beast of the Southern Wild earlier this year, it took me longer than I thought to see it (I blame the month of March along with various other things). Winning a Golden Camera award from the Cannes Film Festival and a Grand Jury Prize winner for Most Dramatic Film at the Sundance Film Festival, this film has more than something to show for itself. I saw it last night, and with it fresh on my mind, I couldn’t help but dive a little deeper into what went on in the midst of making it. This movie isn’t out everywhere, so for those of you that have yet to see it due to lack of resources, start planning your road trip right now.
A couple of weeks ago, the Creator’s Project did a video on the making of the film with director Benh Zeitlin who “believes in making films that take them on terrific adventures and push them to life’s limits.” Okay first off, amazing, and second, seriously? What kind of incredible human thinks like that? The best kind. In the video, Zeitlin takes you through the ups and downs of the whole creation. Where they worked, how they worked, why they worked, everything. Not only did they work out of an old gas station in Monegut, Louisiana, but they took our favorite quote “Build the plane while it’s flying” to a whole new level. The script was written while they were casting and figuring out just exactly where they wanted to go with the movie, and they were creating the answers to their own questions as the movie was going on. People would ask Zeitlin and his film crew why they chose to live in a place that was literally sinking, and although they didn’t know exactly why, the answer comes out in this movie. Spot on. Zeitlin states in the video that this movie really came about when the community they built “joined arms in going up against something impossible.”
So without any knowledge of what to expect, or even knowledge on what the movie was about, I saw it. All I know is I was laughing, crying, taking notes, and panting throughout the whole thing. If you were to take the inspiration from Man on Wire, darkness and imagination from Where the Wild Things Are, love from We Bought a Zoo, and mix them all together, this movie could be the result. It’s one that makes you question so many things on so many levels, and really all you can do is breathe it out.
Do yourself (and the world) a favor and watch the trailer:
(Photo credit: Notebook)