Film: Beasts Of The Southern Wild
Cast: Quvenzhane Wallis, Dwight Henry
Storyline: Wink treats his daughter Hushpuppy with tough love to make her stronger. Suddenly, he contracts a mysterious disease and the natural order of things descends into chaos. With her world unravelling as the aurochs draw closer and Wink’s health fading away, Hushpuppy goes in search of her lost mother.
Benh Zeitlin, in his directorial debut, takes us into a lost corner of the world where the fear of a natural calamity is prevailing. In this delta territory where even the survival-of-the-fittest theory doesn’t seem to fit, there resides a tiny six-year-old girl named Hushpuppy, with other people of her community. Within her lies an intrepid, intelligent girl who challenges herself to live by the side of her ailing father and connect the dots of the fragile natural world as she perceives it.
We hear the story in her voice-over. The camera captures visuals — from crude carcasses to oceanic landscapes — roughly but attentively. In this vulnerable, catastrophic world, where emotions and relationships seem to be fading unnaturally, a tribal child teaches us to accept nature as it is. Beasts Of The Southern Wild stands every right to be in competition at the 14th Mumbai International Film Festival.