Beasts of No Nation

Critics Consensus

Beasts of No Nation finds writer-director Cary Fukunaga working with a talented cast to offer a sobering, uncompromising, yet still somehow hopeful picture of war's human cost.

91%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 141

92%

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User Ratings: 8,079

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Movie Info

As civil war rages in Africa, a fierce warlord (Idris Elba) trains a young orphan (Abraham Attah) to join his group of guerrilla soldiers.

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Critic Reviews for Beasts of No Nation

All Critics (141) | Top Critics (33) | Fresh (129) | Rotten (12)

  • Fukunaga gives the film a visual grandeur that makes it feel like it's taking place after the world has ended, and all that's left for Agu is this morass of endless, uncaring violence.

    November 10, 2015
  • Fukunaga's hurtling camera and taut cutting keep Beasts of No Nation only just this side of hallucinatory, and Elba is the kind of titanic actor to kick it to a near-mythic level.

    October 16, 2015 | Full Review…
  • It's a powerful tale of lost innocence, albeit sometimes heavy-handed in its depiction of the plight of African child soldiers.

    October 16, 2015 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Attah is an industrious little actor, but his fall from innocence is not delineated with the same force as the carnage.

    October 16, 2015 | Rating: B- | Full Review…
  • Idris Elba gives a powerhouse performance as the warlord of a rebel African army that trains children as soldiers. The Oscar for Best Supporting Actor should have his name on it.

    October 16, 2015 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Beasts tells a broadly traumatic story and tells it well, but lacks the kinds of specifics that could make it a truly memorable film.

    October 16, 2015 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Beasts of No Nation

  • Feb 07, 2016
    Another film that's as powerful as it is important.
    Maymay A Super Reviewer
  • Feb 06, 2016
    Two results of watching this: 1) one discovers that the Third World does indeed carry humanity despite one's prejudices and not simply uncivilized savages and, 2) the idea that "war is hell" is only amplified when children are seen fighting it. Remarkable work here, eye-opening.
    Kevin M. W Super Reviewer
  • Jan 09, 2016
    Harrowing and devastating depiction of a child soldier; it's overlong but made with power and intent, and Abraham Attah is superb.
    Daniel P Super Reviewer
  • Jan 07, 2016
    In an unknown place in the world, and after the loss of his family, young Agu runs off only to find a clan of young ones lead by a Commandant. As they teach him to hold his own in the war and kill, the raw human emotion begins to leap off the screen. This Netflix released picture really shows that they know how to find quality content for their streaming service, because at one point this film was being considered for Oscar buzz. Not only is this a powerful story, but Idris Elba really makes you believe this clan exists and the way he forces his kids to do things is brutally realistic. "Beasts of No Nation" does suffer from an extended running time and a slightly over calculated screenplay, which to me felt a little tame compared to it's subject matter. I felt as though the film explored more than it explained, which was a very odd thing to do in my opinion. In the end, this is a very solid film that can be hard to watch a times, but I would still highly recommend. Very well-executed picture!
    KJ P Super Reviewer

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