HONEY BOY (15)
HONEY BOY (15)
Run time: 95 MINS
Director: Alma Har’el
Cast: Noah Jupe, Lucas Hedges, Shia LaBeouf , FKA Twigs
Synopsis: A young actor’s stormy childhood and early adult years as he struggles to reconcile with his father and deal with his mental health.
Honey Boy – from a screenplay by Shia LaBeouf, based on his own experiences – follows a young actor’s stormy childhood and early adult years as he struggles to become reconciled with his father through cinema and to deal with his own mental problems. Fictionalizing his childhood ascent to stardom, and subsequent adult crash-landing into rehab and recovery, Director Har’el casts exceptionally talented Noah Jupe [A Quiet Place (2018)] and Lucas Hedges [Boy Erased (2018), Manchester by the Sea (2016)] as Otis Lort, navigating the different stages of his frenetic career. LaBeouf takes on the daring and therapeutic challenge of playing a version of his own father, an ex-rodeo clown and a felon. Artist and musician FKA Twigs makes her feature acting debut, playing neighbour and kindred spirit to the younger Otis in their motel home. Honey Boy – Har’el’s feature narrative debut – is a unique collaboration between filmmaker and subject, exploring creativity as therapy and imagination as hope in an honest, brave way.
Honey Boy is a tough trip. LaBeouf has been beset by tabloid scandals and past legal problems but has turned his troubled childhood into art.
The film starts as an intense, honest, semi-autobiographical and powerful look at a troubled actor (Hedges) who makes action blockbusters and does a lot of drugs. After a car crash while drunk, he enters rehab and is forced to confront his demons and his post-traumatic stress disorder, as he struggles to restore relations with his father through cinema and dreams.
Shia LaBeouf’s raw and honest acting performance as his own father is an exceptional and bleak confessional of childhood abuse. The direction by Israeli filmmaker Alma Har’el, combined with Natasha Braier’s cinematography and a memorable score from Alex Somers, makes Honey Boy watchable, bearable and often positive and poetic.
Images courtesy of: SONY PICTURES