• PG-13, 1 hr. 31 min.
  • Drama
  • Directed By:
    Benh Zeitlin
    In Theaters:
    Jun 27, 2012 Limited
    On DVD:
    Dec 4, 2012
  • Fox Searchlight

Opening

63% The Maze Runner Sep 19
65% A Walk Among the Tombstones Sep 19
42% This Is Where I Leave You Sep 19
82% Tracks Sep 19
93% The Guest Sep 17

Top Box Office

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35% The November Man $2.8M
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67% The Hundred-Foot Journey $2.4M

Coming Soon

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70% The Boxtrolls Sep 26
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—— Two Night Stand Sep 26
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Premieres Tonight

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New Episodes Tonight

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Discuss Last Night's Shows

91% Doctor Who: Season 8
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90% Outlander: Season 1

Beasts of the Southern Wild Reviews

Stanley Kauffmann
The New Republic
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What is also extraordinary is that almost all the people we see are actors. So this is not a documentary but a moving enactment by people who are themselves moved.

Full Review Source: The New Republic

June 17, 2013
Christy Lemire
Associated Press
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Beasts of the Southern Wild is sheer poetry on screen: an explosion of joy in the midst of startling squalor and one of the most visceral, original films to come along in a while.

Full Review Source: Associated Press

January 8, 2013
Dave Calhoun
Time Out
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A dreamy but strikingly immediate and frayed-at-the-edges, child's-eye view of life on the margins of America.

Full Review Source: Time Out | Original Score: 5/5

October 16, 2012
Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald
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A beautiful, strange tone poem about childhood and innocence.

Full Review Source: Miami Herald | Original Score: 4/4

July 20, 2012
Tom Long
Detroit News
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The atmosphere Zeitlin develops here is moist with promise and danger, and he moves back and forth between outright fable and pungent reality with an astounding sureness of vision for a first-time director.

Full Review Source: Detroit News | Original Score: B+

July 19, 2012
Calvin Wilson
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
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"Beasts of the Southern Wild" is a film to get lost in.

Full Review Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch | Original Score: 4/4

July 19, 2012
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
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Beasts is film as natural mystery museum.

Full Review Source: Denver Post | Original Score: 4/4

July 13, 2012
Liam Lacey
Globe and Mail
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Beasts of the Southern Wild marks one of the most auspicious American directorial debuts in years.

Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Original Score: 4/4

July 13, 2012
Moira MacDonald
Seattle Times
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"Beasts of the Southern Wild" stays with you long after you've watched it, like a vaguely troubling but beautiful dream.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 3.5/4

July 12, 2012
Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
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Beasts of the Southern Wild is like outsider art: patched together with found materials, conjured up by untrained artists (the actors), and evocative of a truly American attitude of eccentricity, boldness, transcendence.

Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer | Original Score: 4/4

July 12, 2012
Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
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It hews to no aesthetic or political party line. It is simply life, seen through the kaleidoscope eyes of a brave, imaginative child.

Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune | Original Score: 4/4

July 12, 2012
Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
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It's unlike any film you've seen.

Full Review Source: Arizona Republic | Original Score: 4.5/5

July 12, 2012
Peter Howell
Toronto Star
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It's as if you're looking out at new land you've never seen before, or an old one you haven't really paid attention to.

Full Review Source: Toronto Star | Original Score: 3.5/4

July 12, 2012
Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
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A film that plays less like a grounded, human-scaled story than a dilettantish piece of cultural tourism.

Full Review Source: Washington Post | Original Score: 2/4

July 6, 2012
Amy Biancolli
San Francisco Chronicle
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Its fertility and its terror stem from the same truth: To the young mind, there is no sealed barrier cleaving reality from fantasy. Not yet. The wall hasn't been built.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle | Original Score: 4/4

July 5, 2012
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
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Here is why some of us love the movies: They let you see with brand new eyes.

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 4/4

July 5, 2012
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
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The filmmaker comes from a perspective of great empathy and considerable skill. But he's a pile driver as a dramatist.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 2/4

July 5, 2012
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
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This film is a remarkable creation, imagining a self-reliant community without the safety nets of the industrialized world.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 4/4

July 5, 2012
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
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[An] extraordinary southern gothic.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

July 3, 2012
Charlie McCollum
San Jose Mercury News
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In filmmaking, as in Hushpuppy's world, everything must fit together just right. And in "Beasts of the Southern Wild," everything does.

Full Review Source: San Jose Mercury News | Original Score: 4/4

July 3, 2012
Richard Brody
New Yorker
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[Zeitlin's] as enraptured by his own imagery as by the poetry of the settings but never finds a distinctive form for his ambitious vision.

Full Review Source: New Yorker

July 1, 2012
Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
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Director Benh Zeitlin, working from a script by Lucy Alibar adapted from her stage play Juicy and Delicious, can't seem to get a visual rhythm going.

Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor | Original Score: C

June 29, 2012
Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com
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Spielberg will love this film, if he doesn't already. Zeitlin's ability to create a believable world out of seemingly impossible ingredients is just that good.

Full Review Source: Salon.com

June 29, 2012
Lou Lumenick
New York Post
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Movies that mix magic and gritty realism almost never work , but Zeitlin, who is making an auspicious feature directing debut, pulls it off with awesome results.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 4/4

June 29, 2012
Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
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The images recall Terrence Malick, but the film fills "atmosphere" into dry narrative holes where a story should reside.

Full Review Source: New York Daily News | Original Score: 2/5

June 28, 2012
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
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There's no trace of calculation, only artistic ambitions and hopes that have come to fruition in the year's finest film thus far.

Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal

June 28, 2012
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
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Beasts of the Southern Wild is a game-changer that gets you excited about movies again. Star Quvenzhané Wallis is a flat-out amazement.

Full Review Source: Rolling Stone | Original Score: 4/4

June 28, 2012
Dana Stevens
Slate
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Zeitlin's adoring gaze on the Bathtubbers' chaotic-yet-joyous way of life smacks of anthropological voyeurism: Rousseau's "noble savage" nonsense all over again, but with crawdads and zydeco.

Full Review Source: Slate

June 28, 2012
Keith Phipps
AV Club
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Beasts moves with a dreamlike pulse, and is never better than when it doesn't feel the need to move much at all.

Full Review Source: AV Club | Original Score: A-

June 28, 2012
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
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The movie is small, local, and idiosyncratic. Then again, it's also a thing of beauty and originality - and for that, sustained huzzahs are in order.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: A

June 27, 2012
Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
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Treat yourself to the experience of this perfect storm of a film, and the tiny force of nature that is Quvenzhané Wallis.

Full Review Source: TIME Magazine

June 27, 2012
Rex Reed
New York Observer
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Don't miss this one. A brave and inspired antidote to time-wasting mainstream movies, it is unlike anything you've seen before or will likely ever see again. In short, it is unforgettable.

Full Review Source: New York Observer | Original Score: 3.5/4

June 27, 2012
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
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The film doesn't self-righteously revile these characters, which is fine. But perhaps worse, it loftily treats them like something out of Rousseau...

Full Review Source: Newark Star-Ledger | Original Score: 2/4

June 27, 2012
Betsy Sharkey
Los Angeles Times
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An extraordinary new drama whose fierceness, like its 6-year-old heroine Hushpuppy, grabs on and won't let go.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 4/5

June 27, 2012
Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out New York
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Their surroundings-decimated cars converted into boats, kindly neighbors, a complete lack of pop detritus (save a Bulls jersey)-shriek of Screenwriterly Poetic Conceit.

Full Review Source: Time Out New York | Original Score: 3/5

June 26, 2012
Melissa Anderson
Village Voice
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In trying through incessant narration to make a six-year-old a prolix sage, Zeitlin can't avoid falling into sticky sentimentality.

Full Review Source: Village Voice

June 26, 2012
Claudia Puig
USA Today
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It is a beautifully acted, gorgeously shot work of potent emotional resonance, with a superbly evocative musical score.

Full Review Source: USA Today | Original Score: 3.5/4

June 26, 2012
A.O. Scott
New York Times
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This movie is a blast of sheer, improbable joy, a boisterous, thrilling action movie with a protagonist who can hold her own alongside Katniss Everdeen, Princess Merida and the other brave young heroines of 2012.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 4/5

June 26, 2012
Ella Taylor
NPR
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It is strikingly hardheaded in its perception that the picayune dilemmas hotly debated on the media-mommy blogs are completely beside the point for a whole underclass of kids who must be brought up tough and self-reliant in order to survive.

Full Review Source: NPR

June 26, 2012
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
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The movie comes across as a collection of competing themes and ideas that collide more often than complement one another and never fully gel.

Full Review Source: ReelViews | Original Score: 2.5/4

June 26, 2012
Glenn Kenny
MSN Movies
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Beasts is striking and affecting in all kinds of ways.

Full Review Source: MSN Movies | Original Score: 4.5/5

June 25, 2012
Robert Levin
The Atlantic
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A love letter to the people of the Bayou State, who have persevered in the face of apocalyptic tragedy.

Full Review Source: The Atlantic | Original Score: 3.5/4

June 9, 2012
Noel Murray
AV Club
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It's undoubtedly something extraordinary: like a live-action Miyazaki film, with Days Of Heaven narration, set in a dirt-poor community at an unspecified time of crisis.

Full Review Source: AV Club | Original Score: A-

January 25, 2012
Todd McCarthy
Hollywood Reporter
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An exceptional American independent feature that deserves the best efforts to tap audiences that would surely embrace it.

Full Review Source: Hollywood Reporter

January 24, 2012
Peter Debruge
Variety
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A stunning debut that finds its dandelion-haired heroine fighting rising tides and fantastic creatures in a mythic battle against modernity.

Full Review Source: Variety

January 21, 2012
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