May 14, 2008

18th May 2008 ; Documentay : Winged Migration

Arguably the most beautiful documentary ever made

Winged Migration

Documentary on the migratory patterns of birds,
shot over the course of three years on all seven continents.

A Film By : Jacques Perrin
Year :2001
Run Time 98 minutes
18th May 2008 : 5.45 pm
Ashwin Hospital auditorium

"Winged Migration.", which is awesome to regard, wants to allow us to look, simply look, at birds--and that goal it achieves magnificently. The cameras of Jacques Perrin fly with migratory birds: geese, storks, cranes. The film begins with spring in North America and the migration to the Arctic; the flight is a community event for each species. Once in the Arctic, it's family time: courtship, nests, eggs, fledglings, and first flight. Chicks must soon fly south. Bad weather, hunters, and pollution take their toll. Then, the cameras go south of the Equator; Antarctica is the summer destination. The search for food, good weather, and a place to hatch young takes this annual cycle of stamina across continents and oceans. There is a spare narration and a few titles; for the most part it's visual, a bird's eye view.

You see the world beneath as they see it — stunningly spacious, gorgeously hued and sometimes dangerous, for we are with the birds as they skim beneath the bridges of the Seine or past New York City's skyscrapers. The picture is just as good when the cameras come down to Earth, studying the way the birds breed, feed and socialize. Knowing that its crews exposed 590 miles of film to make a relatively short (89 min.) film, we have to marvel at the patience and fortitude of its 450 makers, shooting in 40 countries.

As de Tregomain puts it, this very sophisticated film is "taking cinema back to the earliest moments as a science, when the image being filmed was less tricky than how the camera was going to capture it." There's a purity in this effort. It's enough to give the serious moviegoer heart in this impure season.

Jacques Perrin

Jacques Perrin ( Born 1941 in Paris) is a French actor and filmmaker. He is occasionally credited as Jacques Simonet. Simonet was his father's name and Perrin his mother's.His father, Alexandre Simonet, was a theatre director. Perrin was trained as an actor at the Conservatoire National d'Art Dramatique de Paris.

He was given his first juvenile film roles by Italian director Valerio Zurlini. He also gave over 400 performances of L'Année du bac on the Paris stage.He played opposite Claudia Cardinale in the romantic comedy La Ragazza con la valigia and played the adult Salvatore in the international hit Cinema Paradiso. He won two Best Actor awards at the Venice Film Festival in 1966 for the Italian film Almost a Man and the Spanish film The Search.

At 27, he created a studio and filmed the internationally acclaimed Z, which was directed by Costa Gavras . Perrin was both co-producer and actor in the film. He collaborated with Costa Gavras again in État de Siège (State of Siege) in 1973 and Section spéciale in 1975. All of these films had political themes, and Perrin continued this trend with a documentary on the Algerian uprising (La guerre d'Algérie) and a film on the Chilean presidency of Salvador Allende (La Spirale).

Perrin produced another Oscar-winning film in 1976: La Victoire en Chantant (Black and White in Color) by legendary director Jean-Jacques Annaud. In 1977, he embarked on Le Désert des Tartares, again starring Trintignant.

His recent successes have been the animal films Microcosmos and Le Peuple Migrateur (Winged Migration), which were both filmed by his studio Galatée Films.

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