The Movie: 7/10
I have a habit of thinking I have movies figured out before the story is fully revealed. I’m often correct, but NOT this time! That alone is a good reason to really love this movie. Beast is an exploration of that inner anger or creature we all have, it’s just that these characters might have different kinds of beasts inside!
It’s a brooding, quiet, calm, well paced movie. I know it might be boring to some people, which is understandable for folks who want a movie to go-go go-go go all the time. Beast takes its time telling us about our leading character. She’s slightly broken but not tragic. She’s quiet but a loudness is brewing. She has a troubled past but is drenched in a pretense by her family and surroundings that feel claustrophobic and suffocating at the same time. It’s crafted in a way that totally gives me creepy feeling about not just our leading character but almost all the people around her.
It’s got a murder mystery as part of the story, but that’s not really the story, it’s more of a distraction or a valve that’s about to open up whatever and whoever’s beast needs to be unleashed. I sound cryptic, and that’s kind of the point. It’s billed as a thriller, but I don’t really agree. I think it’s just a human drama with a thriller/mystery as a tool to bring all our characters to light.
I felt uneasy a lot of the time, which is good. I love movies that give me a physical reaction, like a scrunched face, raised shoulders, pushing my head back into my chair….it’s stimulating and whatever elements cause that I’m all in! Some scenes have music or silence that makes that intensity even more rich and palpable. If I like it so much why would I give it a 7 out of 10? Well, there are times I was taken out of the darkness and depth of a scene because it just felt a bit too much. The pouting or the brooding went a bit too far to hold the tension and became more like a caricature of a creepy character. It’s a hard balance to hold onto and sometimes it just felt like the editing could have had a bit more tough love:)
Overall I really enjoyed Beast. It surprised me, which is awesome, and it held my attention in a way that I haven’t had in a while, so that’s always fun for a Saturday afternoon movie retreat.
- The Making Of Beast (10 minutes) – A very short making of with awful sound quality, most of the talking head interviews here we done on top of a hill on a really windy day so it is very hard to hear. Topics covered are directing, photography and plot.
- Still gallery
- Blu-ray & UV Digital Copy
Audio & Video: 7/10
Beast comes to Blu-ray courtesy of Lionsgate and a subtle 1080P AVC encode. Beast is a gorgeous looking film and uses a variety of film techniques to give it that artsy style. I found Beast to be very sharp and full of shadow detail in the gloomy environments. If I had to complain about anything it would be some of the naturally lit shots are hard to make out. No macro-blocking or DNR was noticed during the entire run-time.
The 5.1 DTS HD-Master Audio track is subtle and inviting. Dialog is crystal clear and always centralized. The movie has no action sequences so it’s hard to judge dynamics but a car accident did come across as realistic and severe.
Overall Score 7/10