March of the Penguins – Review

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The March of the Penguins is a hugely popular documentary that is noted as being the second most successful documentary in North America.  With an earning power of $77 million domestically it also managed to snag an academy award for best documentary feature in 2005. The narrative of the film is done by the amazing Morgan Freeman, and this is  one of those fascinating movies that people just love to love, so how could I not?

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I admit, I was highly impressed by the lengths that these penguins go to reproduce and the film is extremely well done. Their story is somewhat reminiscent of the old “Kids today have it so easy” stories where people in the good old days walked 50 miles uphill in the snow in their bare feet to go to school. You see, these well dressed fowl trudge sometimes over 60 miles in Antarctic winter conditions to get to breeding grounds that have no food, and huddle together for warmth whilst starving in -40 C temps (and F! this is where the two temps actually agree to the same weather – darn burrrrr in other words) and that’s before you factor in the 144 km/h (89 mph) winds. It’s kind of ridiculous, and although I think the story and the filming is amazing, it’s really quite the horrible ordeal, which made some parts less fun to watch.

Many reviews say that this would be great for the whole family. Yet, I remember how hard I took the hardships that animals go through when I was young, and watching this as an adult still made me feel kinda cringey over the frozen corpses that litter the screen from time to time (ug! if you watch the special features – beware! since there’s more there). I’m not sure that’s my kind of family fun. Sure, everyone knows that life is hard in the wild, but I just felt so sorry for the poor birds.

Even though it’s filled with extremely cute baby penguins, I don’t know that this is something that I’d watch again, but I think it was worth a one time watch. What about you? Have you seen this one? What did you think of it? If you just need a fix of baby penguins, check out the fantastic trailer below:

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2 thoughts on “March of the Penguins – Review

  1. I did see this and like you I don’t think it’s for children. I found it interesting yet difficult to watch also because I am so ‘overly-sensitive to animals and birds who are suffering. I know these things happen and are part of nature but I just can’t watch for the most part anything even on t.v regarding abuse of any kind. It troubles my very soul… Diane

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    • I feel the same way! I really wanted to like this, and did find it interesting, but the negative aspects of nature really kind of overshadowed the positive aspects for me too. I guess we’re just sensitive souls. 🙂

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