“Animal Kingdom” is a 2010 Australian crime drama. After his mother dies from an overdose of heroin, 17-year-old ‘J’ moves in with his grandmother, the matriarch of a notorious crime family consisting of her three sons – J’s uncles … (an armed robber in hiding, a drug dealer and a villain in the making who follows the lead of his older brothers). It is a violent movie – but not in the “blood and gore” sense – it is the way that the movie violates your senses as it depicts how the family acts and interacts – it is alarming, sudden and shocking. It will show you a slice of crime-family life that is realistic and gritty.
Jackie Weaver was nominated for an Oscar for her excellent portrayal of the matriarch, she deserves that nomination but I would have liked to have seen more of her character as her true mettle does not reveal itself until relatively late in the movie – and her habit of kissing her sons on the lips is rather unsettling! Fabulous work is contributed by Ben Mendelsohn, Joel Edgerton, Guy Pearce, Luke Ford, Sullivan Stapleton and James Frecheville also. Each of these actors provides a character that is truly striking, unique and totally believable. The script was inspired by a true crime family of Melbourne, Australia. It is very, very good.