We the Animals

Synopsis & Film Details

Winner of the NEXT Innovator Award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, this visceral coming-of-age drama is based on the celebrated debut novel by Justin Torres. The film illustrates the experience of constructing one’s own identity from the fragments of a shattered home life. Three brothers tear through childhood, in the midst of their young parents’ volatile love, which makes and unmakes the family many times over. While Manny and Joel grow into versions of their loving and unpredictable father, Ma seeks to shelter her youngest, Jonah, in the cocoon of home. More sensitive than his older siblings, Jonah increasingly embraces an imagined world all his own. Propelled by complex performances from an astounding cast – including three talented, young first-time actors – We the Animals is made in a documentary style that creates an immersive portrait of a working-class family, including animated sequences that bring Jonah’s inner world to life.
Assistive listening services are not available for this film.

Director: Jeremiah Zagar
USA (2018) • 94 minutes • Rated R
Distributor: The Orchard

Filmmaker Q&A
After the film, join filmmaker Jeremiah Zagar to talk about the movie live via Skype. Zagar directed the HBO documentaries “In a Dream,” which was shortlisted for an Oscar and nominated for two Emmys, and “Captivated: The Trials of Pamela Smart,” which premiered at Sundance. He lives in New York City. Moderated by Filmworks board member Jefferson Beavers.

Opening Night Reception
Admission to the reception, featuring hors d’oeuvres from Casa de Tamales and champagne, is included with a festival pass or with opening night admission.

Screening sponsor: Fresno Arts Council