Beasts Of No Nation


D: Cary Joji Fukunaga

Netflix / Bleecker Street / Red Crown / Participant Media / Primary Productions / Parliament of Owls (Amy Kaufman, Cary Joji Fukunaga, Daniela Taplin Lundberg, Riva Marker, Jeffrey Skoll, Daniel Crown, Idris Elba & Uzodinma Iweala)

US/Ghana 🇺🇸 🇬🇭 2015

138 mins


W: Cary Joji Fukunaga [based on the novel by Uzodinma Iweala]

DP: Cary Joji Fukunaga

Ed: Mikkel E.G. Nielsen & Pete Beaudreau

Mus: Dan Romer

Abraham Attah (Agu), Idris Elba (The Commandant), Ama K. Abebrese (Mother), Kobinq Amissa-Sam (Father), Emmanuel Nil Adom Quaye (Strika), Kurt Egyiawan (2 I-C)

Set in an unnamed African country in the midst of a civil war, this adaptation of Uzodinma Iweala’s 2005’s novel follows the path of Agu, a young boy who is separated from his mother and sees his father shot by the government army before he becomes a child soldier for a rebellion headed by Idris Elba’s stern commandant.

The politics behind the conflict are filtered into the backstory as the majority of the film is shown from the perspective of Agu, who is easily manipulated into his actions under the pretence of revenge, whilst Idris Elba’s anonymous leader gets further corrupted by his own power which he doesn’t want to relinquish even when the fighting is done.

The final act feels a bit rushed and doesn’t quite tie everything up in a gratifying way, but it isn’t really a film that you’ll get much satisfaction or pleasure from due to the nature of the story being presented.

Filmed in Ghana, writer-director Cary Joji Fukunaga makes good use of the locations and, serving as the film’s cinematographer, has a good eye for some stunning vistas of the African landscape.


Beasts of No Nation
Beasts of No Nation