Based in part on star and screenwriter David Dastmalchian’s own experiences with drugs and living out of his car in Chicago, Collin Schiffli’s Animals believably takes on the tragedy of addiction and homelessness and turns it to a particularly moving drama. (It’s no strange coincidence that the film was singled out for a SXSW Special Jury Prize for Courage, after all.)
The first trailer for Animals makes it pretty clear why the film struck such a chord with the SXSW audience. It’s not over-the-top, melodramatic, or cheap, and despite a short runtime—less than two minutes—it delivers the maximum of emotion and story. It’s a good trailer, but it looks like it’s advertising an even better film.
Check out the first trailer for Animals, thanks to Yahoo! Movies:
The trail of the tape
Director: Collin Schiffli
Screenwriter: David Dastmalchian
Cast: David Dastmalchian, Kim Shaw, John Heard
Release date: May 15
The entire trailer in one line of dialogue: “I want that to be us one day.”
The entire trailer in one screengrab:
Part of what makes this trailer so great is that it refuses to open with the drug troubles, instead lulling us into a false sense of well-being (Look! A young couple in love! And fans of zoos to boot!) before gently opening up their world to reveal that, oops, they actually live outside the zoo in their broken-down car, engaging in petty theft to feed their dual drug addictions. In the minimum of time, we get to care about Jude (Dastmalchian) and Bobbie (Kim Shaw) before we fully understand their lives. It is a nifty trick, but a good one, an evocative one, and one that will likely play out across the film itself.