We the animals, the first fiction film from North American director Jeremiah Zagar, recounts the daily life of three pre-adolescent brothers of American and Puerto Rican descent who spend more time with each other than with their parents. In this poetical coming-of-age movie, we see the story unfold from the naïve point of view of the youngest brother, Jonah, who shares with the viewers a fascinating world full of possibilities with infinite elements to discover. While his two older brothers, Manny and Joel, grow up following the more authoritarian model displayed by their father, Jonah breaks away from his family and enters an imaginary world of his own that will often clash with his harsh reality. The bond that united the three brothers is failing as Jonah’s path becomes more and more clear to himself.
One of the most surprising elements about We the Animals is the filmmaker’s choice to depict reality in a very oniric manner. The protagonists’ sensations and vital experiences are used to set free the montage and present a visual, almost impressionistic, lyricism full of emotions. The story of this dysfunctional family that fights to survive transmits a unique humanity and closeness through its characters. This adaptation of the homonymous novel by Justin Torres has earned Zagar the Innovator Award at Sundance, five nominations at the Independent Spirit Awards this year and various honours. In short, We the Animals is a powerful and heartfelt film, one of the best of the year.
2018: National Board of Review: Best independent films of the year
2018: Independent Spirit Awards: 5 nom. including best first film and cinematography
Runtime: 94 min
Direction: Jeremiah Zagar
Screenplay: Geremy Jasper
Cinematography: Jeremiah Zagar, Daniel Kitrosser
OST: Nick Zammuto
Cast: Raúl Castillo, Evan Rosado, Josiah Gabriel, Terry Holland, Isaiah Kristian
Subtitles: Pascale Trencia
Contact: The Exchange