The Beautiful, Eerie Short Film That Spawned 'Beasts of the Southern Wild'

Released in 2008, Court 13's Glory at Sea features a similar coastal apocalypse and magical realism as the hit indie feature. 

"Sometimes miraculous films come into being, made by people you've never heard of, starring unknown faces, blindsiding you with creative genius," Roger Ebert writes in his review of Beasts of the Southern WildThe Cannes and Sundance award-winning film is so original and compelling that critics can't quite figure out where it came from. It didn't materialize from thin air, of course. The collaborative filmmaking group behind Beasts, Court 13, spent years in Louisiana scraping together a low-budget production and cast of nonprofessional actors, with spectacular results (see this Creators Project documentary for details about the making of the movie).

But before Beasts, the same team produced a 25-minute short in 2008. Also directed by Benh ZeitlinGlory at Sea features a similar coastal apocalypse and magical realism as the indie feature. Beasts gets its heart from the father-daughter story adapted from Lucy Alibar's one-act play Juicy and Delicious, but the themes of survival and redemption in storm-ravaged coastal Louisiana already appear here. If you liked Beasts, you'll enjoy watching the genesis of the feature film in this short, and if you haven't seen it, Glory at Sea might just convince you to check it out. 

For more work by Court 13 visit http://www.court13.com/. For more films from Wholphin, visit http://www.wholphindvd.com/.

Kasia Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg is the executive producer for video at The AtlanticMore

Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg joined The Atlantic in 2011 to launch its video channel and, in 2013, create its in-house video production department. She leads the development and production of original documentaries, interviews, and other video content for The Atlantic. Previously, she worked as a producer at Al Gore’s Current TV and as a content strategist and documentary producer in San Francisco. She studied filmmaking and digital media at Harvard University.

How to Build a Tornado

A Canadian inventor believes his tornado machine could solve the world's energy crisis. The only problem? He has to prove it works.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

How to Build a Tornado

A Canadian inventor believes his tornado machine could solve the world's energy crisis.

Video

A New York City Minute, Frozen in Time

This short film takes you on a whirling tour of the Big Apple

Video

What Happened to the Milky Way?

Light pollution has taken away our ability to see the stars. Can we save the night sky?

Video

The Pentagon's $1.5 Trillion Mistake

The F-35 fighter jet was supposed to do everything. Instead, it can barely do anything.

More in Video

Just In