Australian film director David Michod and actor Ben Mendelsohn talk about the winner of the 2010 World Cinema Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival.

Welcome to the jungle known as the Melbourne underworld. Animal Kingdom uses this edgy locale to unspool a gripping tale of survival and revenge.

Pope Cody, an armed robber on the run from a gang of renegade detectives, is in hiding, surrounded by his roughneck friends and family. Soon, Pope’s nephew, Joshua “J” Cody, arrives and moves in with his hitherto-estranged relatives. When tensions between the family and the police reach a bloody peak, “J” finds himself at the center of a cold-blooded revenge plot that turns the family upside down.

Wielding a formidable cinematic lexicon, writer/director David Michôd shows complete command of every frame as he shifts between simmering intensity and gut-wrenching drama. There isn’t a false note in the film as it follows through on the tantalizing promise displayed in his short films and unleashes a fierce new voice in Australian cinema.