American Honey: LFF Film Review

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American Honey has been receiving critical acclaim since its debut at the Cannes Film Festival so obviously I was excited to watch it and I can now say I fully understand the hype.

It is a coming-of-age drama-cum-road movie starring newcomer Sasha Lane as Star, who escapes from her tough homelife and joins a crew of youngsters travelling around the U.S. selling magazines door-to-door. Star isn’t particularly good at the job and is regularly at odds with her boss Krystal (Riley Keough), especially over her sort-of relationship with Jake (Shia LaBeouf).

American Honey doesn’t have a great deal of plot, but it is full of beautiful moments that I soaked up. I adored the story and watching Star’s journey. I strived for her to do better, get away from that crew, the drink and drugs lifestyle, ditch the crazy guy (Jake) and have a normal homelife she deserves. I was fully invested in her story.

The moments observed in the film just felt so real and honest. Most of the mag crew are not actors and this brings a sense of realism and like they truly are a bunch of friends. Lane was picked off a beach by director Andrea Arnold and given this is her first ever movie, I’m so impressed. Her performance is raw, unflinching and she is captivating onscreen. Her chemistry with LaBeouf is piping hot and their sex scenes are very steamy and, again, realistic.

The main down side is the running time. There is no need for it to be two hours and 43 minutes long. It’s very excessive considering the lack of plot and certain scenes, such as them listening to hip-hop in the van (the soundtrack is epic btw), do feel repetitive and although it doesn’t feel as long as the actual running time, it definitely could have done with a trim. I also like proper endings and this kinda just stops without any sort of hope or revelation, which I would have liked for Star.

American Honey is showing at the 60th BFI London Film Festival. It hits cinemas on Friday 14th October 

Trackbacks

  1. […] pretty much sums it up because not much happens in Paterson at all but, like American Honey, it was full of wonderful moments I enjoyed. Director Jim Jarmusch is simply shining a light […]

  2. […] pretty much sums it up because not much happens in Paterson at all but, like American Honey, it was full of wonderful moments I enjoyed. Director Jim Jarmusch is simply shining a light on an […]

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