Flash Movie Review: Born in China
THERE were so many people watching April the giraffe’s pregnancy that the computer servers became overloaded and the park had to shut down the live video streaming. I only saw a bit of it on the news; but I was fascinated with the attention April was getting from all around the world. What is it about an animal giving birth or more directly the immediate mother/child bond that gets formed that makes us humans stop and take notice? One thing that comes to mind is the pureness in animals’ behavior. Seeing the way a mother protects her child is amazing, especially when the animal’s instincts are being formed. The reason I use the word pureness is because I do not recall ever seeing an animal putting its offspring in harm’s way. Every action and reaction has a purpose as far as I can tell; unlike some of the things I have seen human parents do with their children. PLEASE understand I do not mean to disrespect parents and parenting skills, but there have been times where I witnessed something that was puzzling and/or troubling. Sitting at a casual fast food restaurant I once saw a mother give her infant child a cola drink. The child must have been no more than 2 years of age; am I old fashioned or mistaken in my beliefs that giving a sugary soft drink to an infant is not a good idea? Personally I would never reprimand a child by slapping them across the face, yet I cannot tell you how many times I have seen it being done. And as I have said before children are born into this world without having the awareness of hatred, prejudice or discrimination; it is something that is taught to them. So you see why I say there is a pureness in the animal world that I do not easily find in the human one. This documentary will show you what I mean. SET in the outer remote reaches of China director Chuan Lu (City of Life and Death, The Missing Gun) follows the lives of three different species (snow leopard, golden snub-nosed monkey and panda) and their babies. Narrated by John Krasinksi (13 Hours, Away We Go) I found his telling of the story was okay; he did not have the dramatic appeal compared to other actors I have heard in similar roles. There were two big reasons why I enjoyed watching this film. The first one was the cinematography; it was not only gorgeous, but exciting for me to see places in China that were so far removed from the familiar locations that are associated with the country. The other reason to see this film was the animals, of course. Sure the movie studio did its spin in creating a human emotional story onto the creatures, but ultimately it came down to the bond a mother and child have with each other. Compared to the previous movies done in this category there was really nothing new; the audience here witnessed the usual animal antics, danger and thrills. However it did not matter too much for me, though I was surprised there was a scene of sadness included in the story. I enjoyed this documentary about three species of animals that may not be residents at my local zoo, but I clearly understood what they were doing for their young. There were extra scenes during the credits.
Posted on April 24, 2017, in Documentary and tagged 3 stars, china, chuan lu, documentary, john krasinski, monkey, panda, snow leopard. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.
This looks interesting, Mr. Joltz – and I want to thank you for adding that disclaimer that there is a sad scene in the movie. I’ve been trying to find movies and TV shows that are light-hearted and that put you in a good frame of mind, and as you know, it’s hard to find these days. All of them have some tension, conflict, violence, etc. I don’t mind intense shows if they’re well made, like Game of Thrones, but I have to look away during the more graphic scenes. ‘Preciate your reviews. Thank you! 🙂 Ruth
Hi Ruth, thank you for the comments. I will say the sad scene was done tastefully, more implied than in your face. Please don’t let it stop you from seeing this movie.
Do you know how long it took to film? I remember when Disney produced “The Living Desert”, on one of his programs he mentioned it took several years for the filming of it. It became one of several nature films he made.
I always think it’s fascinating to know it’s time frame. I used to wonder if the story is told through a compilation of filming, not all of the exact same animals but instead scenes from various and spliced together to be turned into a story. I tried to find info on the above film and found little to indicate timing.
I too tried finding out but to no avail. Hopefully you can see this film soon. Thank you for the comments.