March of the Penguins
  • March of the Penguins
  • March of the Penguins

March of the Penguins

4.6 24
Director: Luc Jacquet

Cast: Luc Jacquet, Morgan Freeman

     
 

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While many people think of penguins as comical birds who look like they've been decked out in tuxedos, the truth is they're among the strongest and most resilient creatures in the animal kingdom. And they have to be -- each year, the emperor penguins of Antarctica travel through the most punishing environment on Earth to their nesting grounds, and after the females… See more details below

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Overview

While many people think of penguins as comical birds who look like they've been decked out in tuxedos, the truth is they're among the strongest and most resilient creatures in the animal kingdom. And they have to be -- each year, the emperor penguins of Antarctica travel through the most punishing environment on Earth to their nesting grounds, and after the females lay their eggs, the males keep them warm while their mates walk 70 miles back to the sea to fatten themselves with fish for themselves and their young. Filmmaker Luc Jacquet spent over a year braving the frigid temperatures of the South Pole to film this annual ritual of the penguins, and March of the Penguins documents their brave struggle to survive, as well as the close emotional bonds between the penguin families. March of the Penguins was first screened in France as La Marche de l'Empereur, with a handful of French actors providing a voice-over in which they expressed the "thoughts" of the penguins; for the American edition, Morgan Freeman was brought in to deliver a more straightforward narration.

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
One of the year’s most unexpectedly moving films, this French-made documentary about the mating cycle of emperor penguins took moviegoers by surprise and became a box-office blockbuster in the process. Small wonder: March of the Penguins is cinema vérité at its purest, an unsentimental yet intimate depiction of one of nature’s true marvels. As narrator Morgan Freeman explains, every year these indomitable creatures leave their ocean habitat and make a long, arduous journey over the treacherous Antarctic ice to their traditional breeding ground. Guided by instinct and undeterred by the harsh climate or lack of food, the penguins trudge single-mindedly to their destination, engage in their unique mating ritual, and labor tirelessly to provide for the helpless offspring they bring into an unforgiving ecosystem. Director Luc Jacquet -- who can’t be over-praised for marshalling a crew with the patience, skill, and dedication required to capture these unforgettable images on film -- presents a simple but compelling story that’s every bit as focused and dignified as the penguins themselves. He draws us into their world and celebrates their unflagging resolve, making us care to a surprising extent about these waddling critters. It’s a remarkable achievement, and one you’ll want to experience over and over again.
All Movie Guide
Harnessing the drama of ten Oscar nominees in the simple act of mated penguins transferring an egg across frigid ice, March of the Penguins became a documentary phenomenon, grossing upwards of 70 million dollars and thriving in theaters for months on the strength of its word of mouth. But the most phenomenal detail is that March is not that different from something you might stumble across on Animal Planet, except for being narrated by Morgan Freeman. What March of the Penguins revealed was a true audience appetite for low-tech real-world nourishment, and for a film that would please children without resorting to garish animated fads and their product tie-ins. From the moment the penguins' bobbing heads first peek over the horizon, it's clear the audience will be brought into touch with both the familiar and the unknown; familiar because everyone knows and loves penguins in the abstract, but unknown because few have a sense of the arduous life cycle these determined creatures endure. In their own amazing feat of endurance, Luc Jacquet's crew has captured a palpable sense of both the macroscopic and microscopic struggles of the emperor penguin's mating ritual, documenting the cold and snowy hours in which the birds cling to their basic survival impulse. The harsh conditions also have the effect of putting into perspective the problems of a movie patron sitting in an air-conditioned theater. Laurent Chalet's beautiful camerawork of the Antarctic landscape demands to be seen on the big screen, but even at home on DVD, March of the Penguins is something far more profound than your average nature film.

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Product Details

Release Date:
11/29/2005
UPC:
0012569736573
Original Release:
2005
Rating:
G
Source:
Warner Home Video
Region Code:
1
Time:
1:20:00
Sales rank:
72

Special Features

"Of Penguins and Men," a full-length documentary on the filmmaking process; "Crittercam: Emperor Penguins," produced by National Geographicfeature; "8 Ball Bunny," the classic 1950 Bugs Bunny short wherein he tries to get a lost penguin back to the South Pole.

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Morgan Freeman Narrator
Jeff Schindler Conductor

Technical Credits
Luc Jacquet Director,Original Story,Screenwriter
Laurent Chalet Cinematographer
Clavicorde Sound Editor
Yves Darondeau Producer
Sabine Emiliani Editor
Michel Fessler Screenwriter
Ilann Girard Executive Producer
Gerard Lamps Sound Mixer
Christophe Lioud Producer
Daniel Longuein Production Manager
Jerome Maison Asst. Director,Cinematographer
Emmanuel Priou Producer
Laurent Quaglio Sound/Sound Designer
Emile Simon Score Composer
Alex Wurman Score Composer

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- March of the Penguins
1. Antarctica [4:06]
2. On Foot and Stomach [5:41]
3. Birthplace Gathering [4:35]
4. Partnership [5:02]
5. Life and Loss [3:29]
6. Role Reversal [3:47]
7. Winter's Grip [4:59]
8. Underwater Feeding [4:00]
9. Blizzards and Seals [4:40]
10. Light of Day [3:47]
11. Hatchlings [3:41]
12. Reunion [5:49]
13. Youngsters [3:30]
14. First Storm [4:07]
15. Tragic Response [1:56]
16. Bothersome Bird [4:22]
17. Family Time [4:42]
18. Separate Ways [4:40]
19. End Credits [3:07]

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