The Wolfpack. 2015. USA. Directed by Crystal Moselle. DCP
In Crystal Moselle’s debut documentary, seven siblings grow up inside their Lower East Side apartment, curtained away from the world by their father, who guards the only key to the outside. Homeschooled and effectively trapped, the children learn social cues from movies, until 15-year-old Mukunda tears the veil by wandering out into Manhattan. Moselle crafts a compelling meditation on a lifestyle far adrift from American society, standing carefully alongside the family as their intimate reality suddenly opens into New York City’s immensity. Inevitably, questions arise about the ethics of privacy and agency in filmmaking, and Moselle sometimes hands her cameras to the children, who document their parents in often less-than-flattering circumstances. Both deeply disturbing and utterly compelling, The Wolfpack tangles in upon itself masterfully.