Thursday, July 21, 2011

Animal Kingdom

I watched the Australian movie Animal Kingdom last night. The story focuses on a criminal family in Melbourne presided over by a matriarch. After his mother dies of a heroin overdose, she takes in her grandson, who is roped into helping his uncles out. When the family and police come to loggerheads, the grandson is caught in the middle, being courted by the police to turn state’s evidence. There was something rather unsettling about the movie. I’ve been trying to put my finger on it. I think it was because it was almost made like a documentary, though with very strong cinematography and no voice over. It didn’t try and put a glamorous spin on crime or the law. Rather it focused on the familial relationships, background pressure, paranoia, jealousy, manipulation, corruption and conflicting choices. The soundtrack and the lingering shots on everyday objects and cast members added to the whole ambience. Very subtly the tension builds, despite there being very few action sequences. An oddly compelling story, based very loosely on the notorious Pettingill family. Worth a look. Trailer below.

1 comment:

Margot Kinberg said...

Thanks, Rob - It does look good.