The Beasts of the Southern Wild *****

Down on the Louisiana bayou, situated on levee territory is a bayou shrimping community, self-contained and long forgotten by the outside world. Its inhabitants don’t rightly know this fact or care. Each member of the community tends to his own but if need be, a helping hand to others will be given. Miss Bathsheba (Gina Montana) is one who gives back to the community every day, especially to children. She is the community school teacher educating her students about natural selection, Global warming and ecological changes that could bring more change to their little community than desired. Her daily message, “Learn to live with one another and adapt!” Every day of teaching Miss Bathsheba sends her class home with the words, “Ya’all learn how to survive.” Six-year old Hushpuppy (Quvwnzhane Wallis) let’s Miss Bathsheba’s words go in one ear and out the other, while laughing with her classmates as they try to make sense of the warning. They’re just kids! And, love their teacher as she them. Miss Bathsheba’s knows that while they are still children, they are called upon to live as adults, caring for their messed-up families in the slums of the bayou. She is well aware that education and encouragement from a mentor will be their guide for survival.

A mighty storm hales the levee territory pushing a large portion of the community to seek higher ground. Hushpuppy and her father, Wink (Dwight Henry) along with his moonshine drinking buddies make a pact to wait out the beasts of the winds, rains and horrific noises of clatter to protect their frail homes. In the midst of the storm Wink becomes deathly ill while their home is sinking. Hushpuppy is frightened! How can she survive? How does she adapt? Where does she go for help? She understands that the universe needs to fit together somehow but witnesses her world collapsing around her from a chain of events taking place caused by a storm, a sinking habitat, and Wink’s illness. Hushpuppy must lean into Miss Bathsheba’s teachings and her environment to tame the Beasts of the Southern Wild. (Karen Pecota)

Starts December 20

Original language: English