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With confident pacing, a smart script, and a top-notch cast, Animal Kingdom represents the best the Australian film industry has to offer. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

In this gritty Australian crime drama, young Joshua "J" Cody (James Frecheville) is taken in by his extended family after his mother dies of an overdose. This branch of the Cody clan, overseen by J's scheming grandmother, Janine (Jacki Weaver), is heavily involved in various criminal activities, and they quickly indoctrinate the boy into their way of life. However, J is given an opportunity to take a different route when a cop named Leckie (Guy Pearce) seeks to help him leave the family fold.

Cast & Crew

Ben Mendelsohn
Andrew "Pope" Cody
Joel Edgerton
Barry "Baz" Brown
Guy Pearce
Det. Senior Sgt. Nathan Leckie
Luke Ford
Darren Cody
Jacki Weaver
Janine "Smurf" Cody
James Frecheville
Joshua "J" Cody
Dan Wyllie
Ezra White
Anthony Hayes
Det. Justin Norris
David Michôd
Screenwriter
Liz Watts
Producer
Bec Smith
Executive Producer
Vincent Sheehan
Executive Producer
Adam Arkapaw
Cinematographer
Luke Doolan
Film Editor
Antony Partos
Original Music
Jo Ford
Production Design
Janie Parker
Art Director
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News & Interviews for Animal Kingdom

Critic Reviews for Animal Kingdom

All Critics (163) | Top Critics (47) | Fresh (154) | Rotten (9)

Audience Reviews for Animal Kingdom

  • Jan 10, 2016
    Damn fine Aussie crime drama
    Super Reviewer
  • Jul 25, 2013
    Many directors wish they could give birth to their feature length careers like Michôd could with <i>Animal Kingdom</i>, an intense look to a criminal world seen through the eyes of a 17 year old confused soul. The decision of choosing his perspective instead of using anybody else's remains clear since the first 15 minutes: "When my mom died, this is the world I just got thrown into". The introductory voiceover opened the entire film; I just wished it also had finished it, so that we did not forget who's perspective we were dealing with since the beginning, and to see whether if 'J' had developed a new mentality in this disturbing world. Several films have been done about crime families in the past, but not in this fashion, because whereas they treated the members as family members, the "family" concept had seldom been portrayed in such a literal and realistic way, even suburban, so the whole mood seemed more familiar rather than alien to us. That makes it all the more scary. 76/100
    Edgar C Super Reviewer
  • May 11, 2013
    An intense, gritty depiction of a family whose life is dominated by crime and drugs, and how the youngest of the bunch (James Frecheville) is unfortunately faced with turning his uncles in after they commit a violent crime in retaliation to a corrupt police force. A cold-blooded Aussie thriller that features some powerful acting, especially Jacki Weaver as the matriarch of the bunch, and Ben Mendelsohn as one of the brothers who possesses a psychotic streak. It is a film that contains a lot of interesting twists and subtlety, as well as some pretty violent actions that successfully catch the viewer off guard. A simply riveting film that remains arresting throughout, with one of the more shocking endings I can recall.
    Dan S Super Reviewer
  • Aug 03, 2012
    An intriguing tension filled film, 'Animal Kingdom' is a strong debut feature from David Michod that draws you in with its darkly brooding characters. The film itself felt like a mix between 'Snowtown' and 'The Wire'. It was similar to 'Snowtown' with its central idea and setting but the constant feeling that no one is safe is reminiscent of 'The Wire'. The film is shot rather conventionally but is filled with imagery revolving around the title. Although the idea isn't original what is original is Animal Kingdom's spin on it, relating a criminal family to a pack of lions. Overall, although unoriginal 'Animal Kingdom' is a worthwhile watch with strong performances and an interesting spin on a much used subject.
    Cameron S Super Reviewer

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