by Laura P. Valtorta
Captain Fantastic, written and directed by Matt Ross (he played Alby Grant from the compound in Big Love) is a deeply moving story about a family that lives off the grid and gets punished for it in a way. I loved the philosophies of this film, especially when the family eschews religion and anything having to do with consumer society. They learn about literature, biology, and the Bill of Rights. I like what the kids are learning in this particular home-schooling environment.
Viggo Mortensen is perfect as the father because I don’t think the guy is acting in this one. All of the children in this film are convincing.
The roles of the capitalist grandfather (Frank Langella) and the subservient grandmother (Ann Dowd) were both caricatures.
I’ve seen a couple of scenes from this film already – in particular Dances with Wolves, when they share the heart from the recently killed buffalo. The funeral scene on the beach with the family singing should not have been so “produced.”
Otherwise – this film moved me to tears and made me reflect on our insulated society.It also includes much-appreciated full frontal nudity of a man, for a change.