It’s still vacation time. So did Dr. Nate Samuels has the bright idea of taking his two daughters, Meredith (Iyana Halley) and Norah (Leah Sava Jeffries), on a trip to South Africa. However, the plan of a nice family trip to the village where Nate’s wife grew up quickly turns into a fight for life and death. Because they quickly recognize that they have company from a cruel BEAST.
THE BRIEF STORY OF BEAST
Nate’s wife passed away a while ago. However, the doctor paid little attention to his children’s feelings during this phase. Now, as compensation and reconnection with the family, he travels with the girls to South Africa’s Mopani Game Reserve. Luckily, Nate’s old friend Martin Battle (Sharlto Copley) still lives here.
The wildlife biologist invites the family on an exclusive tour of the area. During that trip, they meet a pride of lions. Martin shows the girls that they don’t have to be afraid as long as they behave correctly. However, terrible things soon happen. A beast has mauled the people of the small village. Unfortunately, as if that weren’t enough, the Beast now chases Nate and his daughters.
THE BEAST CAST
NATE SAMUELS AKA IDRIS ELBA
Nate is a workaholic and overwhelmed with raising his teenage daughters. Usually, he lacks the right words at the right moment. However, Nate loves his children, just as he has loved his wife. He can prove this very soon in South Africa when he has to protect his family from the terrible beast.
Of course, we know Idris Elba as the wise Heimdall from the Marvel Cinematic Universe or Bloodsport in The Suicide Squad. In “Fast & Furious: Hobbs & Shaw” or “Star Trek Beyond,” he showed us his dark side. Besides, in films such as The Mountain Between Us or Molly’s Game, the almost 1.90-meter-tall giant showed us that he handles action as well as drama.
Idris Elba will soon be appearing in cinemas with two films. Because soon the modern fairy tale Three Thousand Years of Longing will start. Here, he plays a Jinn who has to handle the present time.
Meredith Samuels AKA Iyana Halley
Like her mother, Meredith loves to photograph special moments. She misses her mother very much. However, as the older of the two siblings, she always has to show strength. Especially, when the dangerous beast suddenly attacks Martin, the family friend.
We know Iyana Halley from rather mediocre films like Wayward or True to the Game 2. Besides, we also know the pretty Brooklyn native from hit series like This is Us or Abbott Elementary. Furthermore, we also spotted her in the coming of age spring hit 2022, Licorice Pizza. Well, after Beast, we can expect with great certainty that more big blockbusters are to come.
NORAH SAMUELS – LEAH JEFFRIES
Norah is the youngest of the family. Nevertheless, despite her age, she is very tough. Thus, Norah knows how to master life. Above all, she is the cohesion of the family. No question, Norah has a big heart and, of course, tries to reconcile her sister with her father. Despite her youth, she must help her family defend themselves against the terrible Beast.
Sweet Leah Jeffries is new to the business. Although she has already acted in the series Rel from 2018 to 2019, Beast is her first feature film. And what can we say other than that she immediately warms the audience’s hearts with her enchanting playing? Of course, producers and talent scouts have long since noticed that. And so we can look forward to their next blockbuster next year, Percy Jackson and the Olympians.
THE BEAST REVIEW
The story has been well-known and often told since Jaws (1975). A small group, a unique area, a terrifying beast. What is new is that terror reigns in the steppes of South Africa.
Beast tries to convince on two levels here. On the one hand, the film shows the beauty of South Africa with incredibly fascinating, almost breathtaking pictures. The visualization is terrific, almost a bit over the top. Nevertheless, it’s worth seeing.
On the second level, the film tries to address the actual horror of poaching. Unfortunately, Beast doesn’t even begin to set a clear statement here. Beast deals with that problem far too little. Moreover, it’s the same with the hint of where the beast actually comes from.
In contrast, the film warmly shows the bond between the family and their deep friendship with Martin. The two young actresses, Iyana Halley and Leah Jeffries are particularly convinced at any second. With their enchanting and emotional portrayal of their characters, they even play the beast on the wall themselves.
Sharlto Copley, who we know from films like District 9, The A-Team, or Elysium, also plays convincingly. Everyone would like to have such an excellent buddy. However, Idris Elba didn’t blow our minds. He plays well, but nothing more.
Beast is certainly not a masterpiece. However, despite the scary action, the film manages to fall in love with beautiful Africa and its culture. At least, that’s how we felt. Because after the film we immediately looked at trips to South Africa.
In addition, Beast also touches the heart, which is thanks to Iyana Halley and Leah Jeffries. The film is entertaining and quite exciting. Movie newcomers will experience a scary or shocking moment here and there. However, for those who grew up with Jaws and its clones, Beast doesn’t show enough new aspects.
A clearer anti-poaching message would have been nice. Moreover, a little more depth in places would be good. Nevertheless, Beast is worth seeing and deserves a good 6 out of 10 points.
Text: Marco Kokkot
Images: Universal Pictures 2022. All Rights Reserved.