The Sea Beast is a computer-animated adventure directed by Chris Williams, who co-wrote the screenplay with Nell Benjamin and produced with Jed Schlanger. The film tells the story of a sea monster hunter and a young orphan girl who joins his group of sea monster hunters on their search for the elusive Red Bluster back in the 17th century. Learning of The Sea Beast and its Oscar nomination, I of course wanted to watch the film. I must say, The Sea Beast dished up a very profound message and was entertaining.
For hundreds of years, sea beasts have surfaced to wreak havoc against mankind. In response, sailors known as ‘hunters’ venture outward on their ships to hunt the beasts across the ocean, the most famous and successful of these being the crew of the “Inevitable”, which is led by the legendary Captain Augustus Crow III (voice: Jared Harris), his first mate Sarah Sharpe (voice: Marianne Jean-Baptiste), and his adopted son Jacob Holland (voice: Karl Urban). The hunters are financially backed by the King (voice: Jim Carter) and Queen (voice: Doon Mackicha) of The Crown, who have established a distinguished society dubbed Three Bridges as a result of the hunters’ success over the centuries. After being nearly killed during a hunt, Crow tells Jacob that he will make him captain once they kill a female sea beast known as the Red Bluster that took his eye decades earlier.
When the crew presents their latest catch to the King and Queen for payment, they are told they will be replaced by a naval vessel called the “Imperator”, headed by Admiral Eric Hornagold (voice: Dan Stevens) because Nornagold feels the “Inevitable” is outdated. Angered by this betrayal, Jacob negotiates a contest between the two ships vowing permanent rights to hunt Sea Beast in the future as the prize. So, the journey begins with the two ships setting out to capture the sea beast, Red Bluster. After the “Inevitable” and its crew departs, an orphan girl named Maisie Brumble (voice: Zaris-Angel Hator) is discovered stowed away on the ship. The captain decides to let her stay to Jacob’s dismay.
The adventure begins with lots of exciting events. The Sea Beast teaches compassion, empathy, devotion, loyalty, and heartfelt love. I fell lot, stock, and barrel for this animated feature. The animation is outstanding, the story is excellent, and the voices are spot-on. There’s talk of a Sequel — In January 2023, Williams announced in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter that he had signed a deal with Netflix and would be working on a sequel to The Sea Beast following the film’s massive success.
On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 94% of 108 critics’ reviews are positive, with an average rating of 7.6/10. The website’s consensus reads, “An original animated tale that’s often as daring as its characters, The Sea Beast sends audiences on a voyage well worth taking.” I think the whole family would enjoy The Sea Beast which is currently streaming on Netflix — Check It Out!
[THE SEA BEAST is Oscar-nominated for Best Animated Feature at the 95th Academy Awards — Totaling 1 nomination]