Critic Reviews

86

Metascore

Based on 44 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
Director Benh Zeitlin and his co-writer Lucy Alibar, a playwright whose "Juicy and Delicious" was the inspiration, have created characters that are wondrously indelible, distinctive of voice and set them inside a story that will unleash a devastating hurricane, and a flood of emotions, before it is done.
100
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.
100
There's no way you won't be captivated by Wallis, chosen ahead of 3,500 candidates to play the tiny folk hero who narrates the story. Her performance in this deceptively small film is a towering achievement.
100
There's no trace of calculation, only artistic ambitions and hopes that have come to fruition in the year's finest film thus far.
100
The film is its own beast, and it's a rare one.
100
Beasts of the Southern Wild transports us to places that are peculiar and dangerous and magical, and makes us feel weirdly at home.
100
It's very much an art piece, to be sure, but it feels like a genuine one that, while meditated, speaks fluently and truly for the place, people and culture it so indelibly depicts.
100
Sometime miraculous films come into being, made by people you've never heard of, starring unknown faces, blindsiding you with creative genius. Beasts of the Southern Wild is one of the year's best films.
100
It's a beautiful, strange tone poem about childhood and innocence, set in a strange but still recognizable world where the polar ice caps are melting, crayfish shacks float down rivers and enormous aurochs, an extinct breed of bison, are sloughing their way toward our tiny, adorable narrator.
88
It's unlikely there will be a film as visually stunning or poetic this year - or perhaps any year - to rival Beasts of the Southern Wild.
85
The success of this exuberant, affecting debut feature from director Benh Zeitlin depends on his ability to universalize the particular, in this case by drawing us into the perspective of a six-year-old girl living in squalor and feeling and uncertainty in the Louisiana bayou, then telling our own story from behind it.
40
Winds up feeling like a form of emotional tourism. The images recall Terrence Malick, but the film fills "atmosphere" into dry narrative holes where a story should reside.

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