First Netflix Film, Beasts of No Nation Is a Harrowing Tale of Violence in Ghana

First Netflix Film, Beasts of No Nation Is a Harrowing Tale of Violence in Ghana

Beasts of No Nation was the first film that Netflix produced. It was a risky one because it dealt with the violence in the regions of Africa. Directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga and starring Idris Elba, the movie launched at the 2015 Venice Film Festival, and soon after followed a simultaneous theatrical and Netflix release. 

After winning several awards and accolades with its original productions—House of Cards and Orange is the New Black—Netflix invested $6 million in the movie hoping to bag the Oscars, but the movie was mired in controversy. The Oscars committee snubbed the movie, and the four big US theater chains also boycotted it. However, after almost 7 years of its release, the movie is as memorable as it was in 2015.

Celebrate Black History Month with Beasts of no nation

The month of February is significant to the American-African community in the US. The month commemorates and celebrates achievements and contributions of the black people throughout the history of the States.  

Beasts of No Nation is filled with violence and is not for everyone. It has gained an important place in the list of movies that define the black experience. 

Set in Ghana, Idris Elba plays the merciless warlord, who kidnaps children to train as war soldiers. Agu, played by Abraham Attu, is one such kid who is ripped from his family. With his childhood gone, he soon becomes a cold-blooded killer. 

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The Oscar controversy 

Cary’s violent war movie received 5 Film Independent Spirit Award nominations but Oscars dismissed it. The movie’s breakout star, Abraham Attah, won the Best Male Lead, while Idris Elba bagged the SAG Award for the best supporting role. Needless to say, the film didn’t get the accolades or attention it deserved.

During an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Elba shared his thoughts on the film. He expressed how he felt that the movie would have made more of an impact if its release was in the present social climate and not in 2015. 

“‘Beasts of No Nation’ would certainly make a real impact in terms of awards and accolades, and not just because of the climate but because of Cary’s great film,” said Elba.

Have you watched this gem on Netflix yet? If not, stream now and share your thoughts with us.

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