Captain Fantastic

A father living in the forests of the Pacific Northwest with his six young kids tries to assimilate back into society.


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  • ★★★½ review by willa on Letterboxd

    this is what i imagine joaquin phoenix's life was like when his name was Leaf Bottom and he became a vegan at the age of 3 because he saw some fish that his siblings caught writhing around

  • ★★★½ review by Lucy on Letterboxd

    me: sees one tree and hears a bird chirp

    me: this is just like in captain fantastic...

  • ★★★½ review by Jared on Letterboxd

    Not much more than a shining showcase for Viggo Mortenson's incredible capacity for self-doubt, reasonableness and hardness; Captain Fantastic is almost great. The set-up is all there, the film being an examination of decision-making and parenting, but Ross fails to say anything that meaningful. There's touching moments, sure, but they are only touching because the film beats the Dad over the head for much of it's run-time it feels invigorating to see him win one. It drowns, somewhat, in it's eccentricity, the quirkiness that really defines these people's lifestyle. In summation, the comedy works better than the drama. The first half, when Ross is largely just exploiting these odd people for laughs, is far superior to the sincere second one. The film grapples with itself on where to fall on this lifestyle, awkwardly transitioning from maligning him to celebrating his uniqueness. There are some things to treasure in this very indie flick, though. The celebration of intellect was nice, and little touches like "Noam Chomsky Day" had me dying. This is a solid film that doesn't quite know how to reel it's thematic content in, but it's a lot of fun watching it try.

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  • ★★★★ review by Marian on Letterboxd

    me after going hiking one time

  • ★★★★ review by Kalpit Tandon on Letterboxd

    "She's got eyes of the bluest skies

    As if they thought of rain

    I hate to look into those eyes

    And see an ounce of pain."

    Such warmth. Such affection. And such splendid uniqueness. It's as if our eternal sun has engulfed the artificiality of society and all that remains is bright light of healing. It's as if we have reshaped our language back to its primal senses, shunning away the euphemisms so that our feelings are no longer merely camouflaged masks.

    Captain Fantastic is sweetly hilarious and heartbreakingly moving. Immensely gorgeous to look at and infinitely enthralling in its scope, it is the living embodiment of free spirit and making peace with ourselves.

    Cherry on the pie? Viggo Mortensen humming Sweet Child of Mine, enough said.

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