“The Wolfpack,” which was screened at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and received the Grand jury Prize: Best Documentary Award, is about the six Angulo brothers who have spent the majority of their young lives locked away in a small apartment in the Lower East Side, forced by their father to never have any interaction with society.
The only interaction they have had with the outside world is with the thousands of movies that they have watched throughout their years. With that in mind, these six boys are exceedingly intelligent, showing off their skills by reenacting scenes from movies that they have been exposed to in their solitude and by also making very intricate props and costumes from simple household items. However, it isn’t until one of the brothers escapes the apartment that they realize that the lives they have lived thus far is not enough, and that they want to venture out into the outside world to see for themselves the things that they have been longing to see.
With director Crystal Moselle making her directing debut in this documentary, the way that she details the lives of the boys under the strict rule of their father, painting a detailed picture of what life was like as a member of The Wolfpack was done in such a phenomenal manner. She also captures and exemplifies the excitement that the boys feel when they all go out into the world and see everything that they have been longing to see which only makes this family seem even more charming to the audience. But, what was the most interesting aspect about this documentary and what Moselle did as a director was how she was able to tell a somewhat cheerful story about six boys finding happiness within the world and how they used the power of movies to help discover who they are as people, but also how she is able to effectively describe the horrors and abuses that these six boys faced as children, making the audience really think about what life would be like in that situation and environment. However, this story had a lot of charm to it in respect to the subjects being followed. These boys had such a positive and optimistic output on life, even after suffering through years of confinement, and with that in mind, the way they all act and carry themselves and even care for one another is able to warm anybody’s heart. This documentary not only details the horrors of any type of abuse but also shares the coming of age story of these six boys and how they used movie magic, their imaginations, and each other to come out and be the best that they could be. With all of that, it is no wonder why this film got awarded the best documentary award at Sundance.
On June 9, Magnolia Pictures, VICE and Spike Jonze hosted a screening of the film at Landmark Sunshine. The star studded premiere was followed by The Wolfpack’s Rock N Roll High School Prom at Santos Party House.
“The Wolfpack” will be released for viewing on June 12, 2015.