Award winning documentary by director Werner Herzog about the life and death of bear enthusiast Timothy Treadwell.
Timothy spent about 13 years in Katmai National Park & Reserve, Alaska and he believed it was his life mission to protect bears. He went close enough to the bears to almost touch them and he started behaving like bears.
The documentary uses Timothy’s own footage with the bears almost upto the last few hours before his death. He and his girl friend Annie Huguenard were mauled to death by a bear with whom Timothy was ostensibly friendly.
There were few voices in the documentary which questioned his madness and lot many speaking admiringly of him. The documentary is a combination of narration with interviews and of course the live footage from Timothy’s camera. Timothy was living in the wilderness with two foxes as his pets and so there were people saying don’t disrupt mother nature’s ways. Interesting documentary, but a bit too long, i thought.
Most breathtaking documentary on the legendary primatologist and anthropologist Jane Goodall and her path breaking work on chimpanzees. She arrived in Gombe National Park in then Tanganika (now Tanzania) and started studying the life of chimpanzees there. Being known as animals closest to humans, and known as intelligent animals having learnt to make and use tools for their daily use, Jane started observing them at close range all aspects of their life. Initially she was looking at them from a distance, but slowly over the years, she started moving closer to them to the point where human chimpanzee interaction started taking place, albeit in a very limited way. The chimpanzees started entering the human habitation for the store of bananas kept there and that allowed for a more closer and better study. This movie was shot in 1982, 22 years after Jane set foot in Africa but she has been at it for more than 6 decades now. They had some lovely close up video shots even from way back in the early 60s and that makes for a good viewing.
A NatGeo documentary on an unique project in Zambia, to recruit woman to fight the poachers. It is a dangerous job all right, with the poachers with their rifles all ready to kill anybody who comes in their way to kill the animals. But this project is dependent on one main ingredient i.e the woman’s instinct to protect. Woman are natural protectors whether they be of their own babies or animals. All one has to do is to train them to be expert in guns, hand to hand combat, stamina, guts and daring to do the job. This Zambian project is good, it has already recruited more than 100 women into this fold. All the women in the project are poor, so they are needy and have the urge to do the job.
India should also seek to engage women in a project to protect the animals. Indian women are now allowed to engage in combat duties on the military front, so this won’t be difficult for them.