Have you heard about The Wolfpack? No, not that wolfpack. This pack consists of seven siblings from New York who had no idea what the real world was like for almost 14 years. The Angulo siblings spent most of their childhood locked inside their parents’ four bedroom apartment.
The only information they had about the outside world came from films. Over 5,000 films that were either purchased at a discounted price or rented. The oldest sibling, 23-year-old Bhagavan, spent his entire childhood inside with his brothers and sister. But then one day in 2010, one of the brothers managed to escape from the apartment.
Eventually, the six Angulo brothers were able to venture out into the world together, and during one of those adventures, they were spotted by filmmaker Crystal Moselle. She claims they were all walking in a pack, wearing sunglasses and getting inspiration from their favorite film, Reservoir Dogs.
Moselle remembers that first encounter vividly…
“It almost felt as if I had discovered a long lost tribe, except that it was not from the edges of the world but from the streets of Manhattan.”
She was intrigued and wanted to know more, so she befriended the sheltered brothers. It took a bit of time, but she managed to gain their parents’ trust as well, which led to the filming of her new documentary, The Wolfpack.
“They had no friends. They were homeschooled and their only window to the world was movies. Everything was pretty much kept within the household. What’s so fascinating about them is that they really have created their own world through their interpretations of the films they have watched.”
It appears that their father was in control of the household. He told cameras he was scared that New York would “contaminate” his children. And even though it’s obvious their father clearly has some serious issues, Moselle claims he and their mother obviously did something right.
“The thing is, these brothers are some of the most gentle, insightful, curious people I’ve ever met. Something was clearly done right.”
All six brothers and their mother went to Sundance to watch the premiere of their documentary at the festival. It took home the Grand Jury Prize for best U.S. documentary.