Review of "Animal Kingdom Season 1 (DVD)"

published 25/08/2017 | kiss_me2070
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Excellent
Pro great storyline, good characters, once you watch one you want to watch more
Cons some people may not like the hard drug references or violence
exceptional
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Characters / Performances
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Soundtrack

""We Don't Hurt People"."

Animal Kingdom: Season 1

Animal Kingdom: Season 1

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About
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Animal Kingdom is an American drama television series developed by Jonathan Lisco. It is based on the 2010 Australian film by David Michôd, who is executive producer for the series, alongside Liz Watts who also produced the movie. The series follows a 17-year-old boy, who, after the death of his mother, moves in with the Codys, a criminal family clan governed by matriarch Smurf. Ellen Barkin portrays the leading role of Janine "Smurf" Cody, played by Jacki Weaver in the 2010 film. Animal Kingdom debuted on TNT on June 14, 2016, and was renewed for a second season on July 6, 2016, of thirteen episodes that premiered on May 30, 2017.] On July 27, 2017, TNT renewed the series for a third season. The first series appeared on Amazon last year which is when me and my boyfriend watched it. I have Amazon Prime, so I get this series free with my membership. Season one has a total of 10 episodes, each one which is around 55mins running time.

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Plot
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This bold family crime drama centres on teenage J Cody, who moves in with his freewheeling relatives in their Southern California beach town after his mother dies of an overdose. Quickly pulled into the family's life of excess, he soon discovers that it's all being funded by criminal activities. Joining the family comes with more danger and excitement than he might be ready to handle.

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Price/Availability
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The first season was released in DVD and Blu-ray formats on April 28, 2017. Each set contains behind-the-scenes featurettes and deleted scenes. You can purchase this on DVD from Amazon for £14.99.

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Main Cast
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• Ellen Barkin as Janine "Smurf" Cody.
• Scott Speedman as Barry "Baz" Blackwell.
• Shawn Hatosy as Andrew "Pope" Cody.
• Ben Robson as Craig Cody.
• Jake Weary as Deran Cody.
• Finn Cole as Joshua "J" Cody.
• Daniella Alonso as Catherine Blackwell
• Molly Gordon as Nicky Belmont
• Carolina Guerra as Lucy
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Season One
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• Episode 1: “Pilot” – This episode opens with Joshua sitting in his lounge with his mother next to him. When the paramedics turn up and ask what she has taken he tells them ‘Heroin’. Joshua doesn’t really seem fazed or upset by this so it’s clear that his mother was a regular user and it’s something that he got used to seeing and dealing with. Very shortly into this episode is when we meet ‘Smurf’ after she goes and collects Joshua and takes him back to hers to stay with his uncles and her. They all live in a very lavish home in California. Joshua’s two uncles and their adopted brother come across as a people who live life on the edge. They come across as people you wouldn’t want to get on the wrong side of and they seem very different to Joshua. The household get a surprise when ‘Pope’, their eldest and unstable brother returns after serving a sentence for bank robbery. There is a good amount of action towards the end of this episode when the brother carries out a smash and grab robbery.

• Episode 2: “We Don’t Hurt People” – This episode starts off with everyone having fun in the pool. Pope is settling in being back at home with his brothers; how-ever he seems to have taken a slight dislike to Joshua, forcing him to drink when he doesn’t really want to. Meanwhile Nicky (Joshua’s Girlfriend) seems to be getting along very well with ‘Smurf’. In this episode, we learn a little more about ‘Baz’ and his relationship and that he has a daughter (Lena). Catherine (Baz’s girlfriend), knows about the jobs that Baz and his brother do and she doesn’t like it, especially when a security guard from their previous job dies. Joshua and Smurf become closer to each other and Craig is rushed off to Mexico to see a special friend when a gun-shot wound he has becomes badly infected.

• Episode 3: “Stay Close, Stick Together” – Despite Baz being with the mother of his daughter, he is playing the field and is also seeing a Mexican lady called Lucy as well whom has a son. There is a sex scene in this episode involving Baz and Lucy. Pope and Deran take on a job behind Smurf’s back and they take Joshua with them whom helps them out. Craig returns home in this episode and starts recovering from his gunshot wound. By now we have learnt that Craig has quite a bad drug habit which his other brother’s comment on regularly. Joshua turns up at Nicky’s house to return the watch that he originally gave her; how-ever Nicky’s father doesn’t seem to approve of Joshua and the gifts he is giving Nicky.

• Episode 4: “Dead to Me” – It’s Pope’s birthday and his brothers have an action filled day planned for him. By this episode it’s very clear that Pope is a little strange and I think he comes across as rather scary. The brothers get frightened when they think they have been caught for the side job that Pope, Deran and Joshua did; how-ever Smurf is playing games with them, to teach them a lesson as none of them want to confess that they did a job behind Smurfs back. Smurf is clearly a very powerful woman and this shows. Craig panics when he goes back to find the woman he has been seeing is lying out cold on the bathroom floor, which he assumes is from a drug over-dose as they were doing drugs earlier that day. In this episode Joshua starts to see a very different side to Pope.

• Episode 5: “Flesh Is Weak” – This episode starts off fun with all of the brothers having fun skate-boarding. Deran has been staying away from home; how-ever it’s not clear to start off with why. Baz tried to convince him to come back home; how-ever Deran doesn’t want to. Pope seems to become angry when Smurf doesn’t force Joshua to participate in the next job they have lined up. We meet a new character called Adrian in this episode; how-ever I am not going to reveal whom he actually is as I don’t want to ruin this episode. Joshua gets into a situation with his teacher (Alexa); however, little does he know that she has been set up by a detective (Sandra Yates) to try and get information from him about his family.

• Episode 6: “Child Care” – Detective Sandra Yates puts more pressure on Alexa to try and get more information about the Cody’s dealings and next job. Baz is becoming very good friends with Nicky’s father (Ken); how-ever it’s for a reason. As the Cody’s plan, their next job Ren’s home is robbed and some things are stolen. Joshua works out who he thinks is to blame. Craig is put in a situation and his mother has to come and rescue him, much to her anger and disappointment in him. Meanwhile Baz bonds and spends time with his daughter Lena. Baz tells his mother that he thinks Joshua may become a problem with regards to their next planned job.

• Episode 7: “Goddam Animals” – When Baz tells his mum that him and Catherine want another child, it doesn’t go down too well with her. In this episode, we learn that Joshua stays the night at Alexa’s; and she questions him to try and get information from him about her brothers and what they do. Smurf goes on a secret trip and leaves the boys to manage on their own; how-ever they decide to throw a party. We learn a little more about Smurf in this episode as she goes away on her secret trip to meet someone. At the party Adrian seems upset and he seems to be getting annoyed with Deran, so he decides to leave. When Craig suspects something is going on with Deran and Adrian he questions Deran about it. There are some more sex scenes in this episode.

• Episode 8: “Man In”- This episode starts off with the Cody’s planning their biggest heist yet. Alexa confesses to Joshua that the detective that has been putting pressure on her has been making her wear a wire when her and Joshua have been meeting. When Catherine is asked by a detective to help take down the Cody’s she refuses and packs a bag for her and Lena ready to leave. Nicky seems to becoming very close to Craig, which leads them to sleep with each other. Joshua gets asked by Smurf, Pope and Baz whether he will help them out with their heist. Joshua in the mean-time is also trying to find out if Baz is his father.

• Episode 9: “Judas Kiss” – This episode is the day of the heist. Everyone seems to be feeling very tense about it including Smurf and Catherine whom are waiting to hear back from the boys. Joshua is questioned by one of the detectives but refuses to implicate his brother and smurf. Naturally in this episode, it’s quite tense at times as we see the Cody’s try to pull off this heist at the Army Base Camp. This episode is quite exciting due to the heist they have to pull off and although it’s a bad thing they are doing you can’t help but want the Cody’s to get away with it. Catherine steals some money from Smurf and she sends Pope to confront her. Catherine knows that she is in trouble how-ever her plan to try to seduce him goes horribly wrong. The end of this episode has quite a twist to it that I didn’t see coming.

• Episode 10: “What Have You Done” – Baz returns home from the job to find Catherine gone. Only Smurf and Pope knows what has happened to Catherine and they have to try and keep Baz from figuring out what has happened to her. This episode does focus on Baz trying to find out where Catherine has gone and why she has left Lena. Smurf is angry when the money from their heist comes through and it’s short. Joshua tells Smurf about the detectives that have been trying to follow the Cody’s and trying to get information about them. Smurf is angry, but at the same time she is pleased that Joshua was honest with her in the end. The way this episode ends leave you wondering what lengths Joshua is really willing to go.

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Characters
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I think all the actors do a very good job at playing their parts. The main characters are the Cody’s; however due to their lifestyle, the series doesn’t get boring as it focuses on their life of crime and how they can afford to live in the lavish home that they do.

• Smurf is a very protective and powerful woman who clearly loves her family. She is not a woman to mess around with and definitely not the kind of woman you want to get on the wrong side with either. Despite how she is, I like her tough and powerful character and I think Ellen Barkin does a fantastic job at playing her.
• Baz is probably one of the quieter brothers; how-ever despite this we do see his manipulative side to him during this series.
• Pope is mentally disturbed and from the moment he appears, just from the look of him you can tell he is a bit of an evil man. He always has an evil and scary look on his face and in this series, we see the scary side to him and we see how scary and evil he can be.
• Craig, I think is one of the better looking, but he is the one brother that seems to have a bad drug habit and the other brothers do mention this to him. Craig is an adventurous guy who likes to have fun, especially with women.
• Deran and Cody are quite similar to each other in the fact that they are bother adventurous. Deran’s look reminds me a little of Sawyer from lost due to his long blond (surfer style hair).
• Joshua comes across as a very quiet character and at first, it’s hard to imagine him fitting in with the Cody’s in their lavish home with their life of crime; how-ever in a few of these episodes it’s obvious that Joshua is warming to them and is even getting involved in some of the jobs.

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Special Effects
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There are quite a few special effects in the film which includes some shooting, a few explosions and obviously some good make-up as well in terms of blood. The special effects are good and look very realistic, as does the make-up, especially the gun shot wound make-up.

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Overall Opinion
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This TV series was right up mine and my boyfriend’s street. We loved this series right from the very first episode. I love the storyline/plot to the episode and I think the characters in the series are great. This is definitely more of a crime series; how-ever it’s not one that contains a lot of violence. There are some sex scenes every now and again in the series but not as many as you may expect. There are drug references in the series and no doubt this will continue into the 2nd series. I’ll admit that some episodes weren’t as exciting as others; how-ever I wouldn’t particularly say that there was one specific episode that stood out as being really weak. This is the kind of series where you do need to watch it right from the beginning to know what is going on. After watching this series; although we have learnt a little more about the characters, there’s still a lot more to learn about them and some of their backgrounds. This is a great series and one that me and my boyfriend were hooked on so much that I think we watched it over the space of a whole weekend. I haven’t seen the film that this series is based on so I am going to suggest to my boyfriend watching that over the weekend to see how it is in comparison to the series.

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Reception
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• On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the season has an approval rating of 73% based on 30 reviews. The consensus is: "Bolstered by Ellen Barkin's acting prowess, Animal Kingdom is a darkly intriguing, although occasionally predictable, twisted family drama.
• On Metacritic, the series has a score of 65 out of 100, based on 27 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".
• On IMDB this series is rated 8.10/10 rated by 9, 240 users.

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Other Information
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Genre: Crime, Drama
Classification: 15
Running Time: Approx. 55mins per episode


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Comments on this review

  • euphie published 16/09/2017
    e :o)
  • NBCMad92 published 05/09/2017
    Great, sorry I am out of E for today
  • Candyperfumegirl published 04/09/2017
    ex
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Product Information : Animal Kingdom Season 1 (DVD)

Manufacturer's product description

Product Details

Genre: Drama

DVD Region: DVD

EAN: 5051892204538

Actor(s): Ellen Barkin, Scott Speedman, Shawn Hatosy, Ben Robson, Jake Weary

Classification: 15 years and over

Production Year: 2016

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Listed on Ciao since: 23/08/2017