The first series of ‘True Detective’ established true cinematic excellence with that six minute tracking shot and remains firmly cemented in our memory. It was Cary Fukunaga, who directed all 8 episodes of the first series and drove the HBO TV drama into it’s cult status.
Written, shot, directed, and produced by Fukunaga, ‘Beasts of No Nation’ is a debut for the director on Netflix, who are also making their first foray into feature films with the movie reportedly being picked up at $12 million.
Already tipped to be a strong Oscar contender, ‘Beasts of No Nation’ is an unforgiving portrayal of a civil war starring Idris Elba as a sinister commander of a rebel army who indoctrinates a child soldier played by newcomer Abraham Attah. Fukunaga is realistic about the burden, responsibility and power of a film such as ‘Beasts’ – “Child soldiers is a tough one because there’s no one policy that can just end it. Movies do have the power to create awareness and positive change.” Although the film was shot in Ghana, the actual location portrayed in the film is an unnamed West African country.
Based on a critically acclaimed debut novel by Nigerian writer Uzodinma Iweala published in 2005, the film adaptation has also premiered to critical acclaim at Venice Film festival and recently at Telluride and Toronto International Film Festivals.
‘Beasts of No Nation’ is expected to see a global release through Netflix and small independent cinemas on October 16, 2015 but since Netflix have circumvented traditional theatrical film dealmaking by ensuring a simultaneous release across the big and small screen – some big screens will be boycotting the film.
Britain this week will be hosting the arms trade fair and attending will be a number of nations that have been using child soldiers in war zones. The urgency of this issue and the films release is timely to say the least.