Walker Art Center

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Beasts of the Southern Wild

Directed by Benh Zeitlin, Area Premiere

In a forgotten but defiant bayou community cut off from the rest of the world by a sprawling levee, a six-year-old girl exists on the brink of orphanhood. Buoyed by her childish optimism and extraordinary imagination, she believes that the natural world is in balance with the universe until a fierce storm changes her reality.

Benh Zeitlin’s extraordinary debut feature exhibits a rare magic and lyricism that is sure to make it one of the best films of the year. Shot on Super 16mm film and employing non-actors, Beasts of the Southern Wild was the unequivocal darling of the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, winning the Grand Jury Prize and earning instant critical acclaim. Manohla Dargis called it “among the best films to play at the festival in two decades” (New York Times), and Todd McCarthy simultaneously proclaimed it “one of the most striking films ever to debut at the Sundance Film Festival” (Hollywood Reporter). Singular in style and story, this film is poised to make its mark on new American cinema for the 21st century. 2012, DCP, 91 minutes.

Beasts of the Southern Wild is presented in association with Fox Searchlight Pictures and Cinereach.


Major support to renovate the Walker Art Center’s Cinema and to preserve and digitize the Ruben/Bentson Film and Video Study Collection is generously provided by the Bentson Foundation.

Sound system provided by