American Animals

American Animals follows a group of dissatisfied young men as they plan out and execute an art heist– inspired at least in part by actual events. Featuring Evan Peters, (Warren), Barry Keoghan, (Spencer), Blake Jenner, (Chas) and Jared Abrahamson, (Eric), respectively, however, Peters is the standout star.
Peters has already proven time and again that he is amongst the best young actors in Hollywood– this is a testament to that. Peters is incredibly believable as Warren, a young man who wants his life to be more than it is, a man who is willing to go to great lengths for adventure and excitement; no matter the cost. Though throughout the film we witness Warren and the other characters become villains to an extent, but you can’t help but root for them.
The writing for the film is phenomenal, with scenes that stress both the humour and the tension of the film; a lesser film wouldn’t have been able to balance these elements. The emotional stakes are very well implemented if a little overdone at times, with them showing you the emotional cost not only of the victims but the criminals themselves.
More to the film’s praise the stylised editing works to strong effect, being not too dissimilar to something you would expect to see in an Edgar Wright film. What’s more the editing as a tool to show the differences in perspective between the people recounting the story is very interesting.
To conclude, what sets American Animals apart from other crime, heist films is it’s attention to character relationships and focus on the emotional impact actions have on the characters. Knowing nods to other genre greats like Reservoir Dogs make this an incredibly enjoyable ride. The blend of tension and comedy featured, maybe the films strongest pro. Very worthy of your time.
Reviewed by Luke

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