‘Honey Boy’ Review: Shia Labeouf’s Life as a Familiar Addiction Drama

Shia LaBeouf Turned Court-Ordered Therapy Writing Into Honey Boy

One of the most anticipated films at Sundance has one of the strangest origins.

Shia LaBeouf’s personal life has garnered as many headlines as his performances in recent years, so it only makes sense that he would eventually merge the two. He’s done just that in “Honey Boy,” which the actor wrote and stars in as his own father. (Lucas Hedges plays LaBeouf in his younger years, because LaBeouf playing himself would have made too much sense.) Speaking at the IndieWire Studio, presented by Dropbox, director Alma Har’el addressed the Sundance drama’s unusual origins.

Read More:‘Honey Boy’ Review: Shia LaBeouf’s Life Story is Now a Familiar Addiction Drama — Sundance

“There was definitely an urgency in the script that I think anybody that read it felt,” said the filmmaker, who previously directed “Bombay Beach” and a slew of music videos. “An outpour, you know? He was basically court-ordered to go to rehab and write his memories. That’s how I got the script, like you see in the film, while he was in rehab. And I think you can sense that in the film, too.”

“I have no doubt. But time will tell, you know? I think people really love simple answers — people really wanna know yes, no, bad, good. Life is more complicated than that. Life is a process, you know? Life is what happens while we’re making other plans, like John Lennon said.”

Read More:‘Honey Boy’ Director Reveals Why Lucas Hedges Was Cast as Shia LaBeouf

FKA Twigs, Maika Monroe, Natasha Lyonne, Noah Jupe, Martin Starr, Byron Bowers, Laura San Giacomo, and Clifton Collins Jr. co-star in “Honey Boy,” which has its world premiere in the U.S. Drama section yesterday. Jupe — who plays LaBeouf in his much younger years — was also in the studio to discuss the film, and spoke about the scene he found most difficult to shoot. Watch portions of both conversations below.


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