Middle America has embraced Luc Jacquet’s film for its purportedly pro-family-values depiction of the emperor penguin’s gruelling breeding process. In fact, it’s the sheer alienness of the penguins’ actions that make the film so fascinating. Imagine if we had to reproduce by leaving our homes every year to walk for miles to a big field, where we paired off and had very public sex before the women wandered off in search of grub, leaving the men starving and holding the baby in subzero temperatures. We’d be on the verge of extinction. Morgan Freeman’s slick voice-over compounds a slightly plodding structure, but the dedication of the penguins – and the cameramen – assure your wonderment.
Friday December 9 2005