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About the Movie
The story of a teenager as he navigates his survival in the Melbourne underworld amongst an explosive criminal family and the detective who thinks he can save him.
Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews
- Reviews Counted: 157
- Fresh: 149
- Rotten: 8
- Average Rating: 8.0/10
Top Critics' Reviews
Fresh: The story meticulously unfurls like an apple carefully peeled in one long ribbon to reveal its rotten core.
Fresh: Writer-director David Michod creates a densely textured moral universe that makes good on his metaphoric title.
Fresh: It's a remarkable film: gritty, gut-churning, thrillingly acted.
Fresh: Dark and mesmerizing.
An engaging, intelligent crime drama with fantastic performances
Animal Kingdom is a fierce Australian crime drama. The film, set in Melbourne, centers on rising tensions between the city's desperate criminals and the hard-edged police on their tails. The audience follows a teenager 'J' (James Frecheville) as he enters and navigates this dangerous underworld. The supporting cast includes Guy Pearce (Memento, The King's Speech) as a senior cop attempting to turn 'J' against his family of thieves and Jacki Weaver as a crime-family matriarch as sweet as she is deadly. Weaver delivers a FANTASTIC, Oscar-worthy performance; her commanding presence haunts every scene, even ones she's not in. The entire cast is splendid. There is no weak link.
This film has been called the Australian answer to Goodfellas, and I can't disagree. There are strong similarities. Both films show the dangers and sorrows inherent to a life of crime, but they also don't deny the "high" which must draw individuals to such a lifestyle--the fleeting feelings of "importance" and "success" which lead these sad character to continue down illegal, sinister paths rather than truly considering and improving their situations. Debut writer/director David Michôd has made an auspicious debut with Animal Kingdom. He builds tension and explores his characters' criminal milieu with Coppola/Scorsese-esque flair, and he draws colorful, detailed, and poignant performances from his ensemble cast. I can't wait to see what he does next. Until then, we have the masterful Animal Kingdom to savor.
I Respect David Michod
Unlike the loquacious DotEyes guy, I'll keep it simple: This film was excellent. Great writing, direction, and acting--I mean really crisp on all fronts. This is a very rare sort of film to come about in these dark ages of entertainment where hype and perception are king. And not that he's going to read this, but David Michod, thanks. Thanks for not bs'ing like everyone else with a camera likes to do.
When this movie is available for rent, I will give it 5 stars. I've seen it before and it's great, but I want to rewatch this movie so I can watch Jackie weaver some more. At a 3.99 price. The end.
- Genre: Drama
- Released: 2010
- © 2010 Animal Kingdom Holdings Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved.