Following up Wuthering Heights early this decade, Fish Tank director Andrea Arnold is finally back with American Honey, which picked up the Jury Prize at this year’s Cannes Film Festival (and we also named it one of the best of the festival). Starring newcomer Sasha Lane, as well as Shia LaBeouf and Riley Keough, it follows teenager who gets caught up with a traveling magazine sales crew as she ventures through the Midwest. Shot once again by Robbie Ryan, it looks like a vibrant drama judging by the first trailer, which A24 has released today.
We said in our review, “European directors have often faltered when crossing the Atlantic. Billy Wilder and Wim Wenders found things to say where Paolo Sorrentino could not. American Honey is certainly the former. Based on a 2007 article from the New York Times, it’s a backwater American road movie directed by an Englishwoman, Andrea Arnold, and shot by Irishman Robbie Ryan. We spot a few cowboys and gas stations and even the Grand Canyon, but it’s nothing to do with any of that. It’s about America (duh) but it’s also about friendship and money and learning to look out for yourself, and that primal connection young people make between music and identity. It’s visually astonishing and often devastating, too. This might be the freshest film about young people in America since Larry Clark’s Kids from 1995.”
Check out the trailer and the Cannes press conference below.
Star (Sasha Lane), an adolescent girl from a troubled home, runs away with a traveling sales crew who drive across the American Midwest selling subscriptions door to door. Finding her feet in this gang of teenagers, one of whom is Jake (Shia LaBeouf), she soon gets into the group’s lifestyle of hard-partying nights, law-bending days, and young love.
American Honey will be released on September 30 by A24.