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March of the Penguins
  • Alternative view 1 of March of the Penguins
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March of the Penguins

4.7 24
Director: Luc Jacquet, Morgan Freeman

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

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.

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.

Product Details

Release Date:
11/29/2005
UPC:
0012569751163
Original Release:
2005
Rating:
G
Source:
Warner Home Video
Region Code:
1
Time:
1:20:00
Sales rank:
41,012

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

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 [3:30]
6. Role Reversal [3:47]
7. Winter's Grip [4:59]
8. Underwater Feeding [4:00]
9. Blizzrds and Seals [4:40]
10. Light of Day [3:47]
11. Hatchlings [3:41]
12. Reunion [5:48]
13. Youngsters [3:31]
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 [3:08]

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March of the Penguins 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 24 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a very well done documentary however I was not prepared for the nightmares and loss of innocence caused by this movie. My just turned six year old internalized the death of the mother penguin who was eaten by the seal and understood the deaths times three of baby penguins and eggs. This has caused problems we were not ready for. We left the movie theatre early. The G rating doesn't reflect the material content.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This has to be one of the most beautiful films ever made. It was, as Morgan Freeman said, a love story. Not only was the scenery incredible, the story of these intelliget animals is not to be forgotten. If humans behaved in such a communal way, the world would be a much better place. There are moments of joy, defeat, sadness, and triumph. This is a movie for all ages.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have not seen the version with Morgan Freeman but have seen the original French version recently (outside USA). Accompanying the sublime cinematography and sound, two French narrators, one male and one female, poetically interpret a pair of Emperor Penguin's essential relationship to keep their chick alive. It is wonderfully scripted (even in subtitles) and to me, is what glued the film together for it's feature-length duration. I'm sure Freeman's script must be craft-fully done but I can't imagine a singular narrative having the same charming effect. It may be worth tracking down the original version if you you can.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am proud to have seen this movie. It is unlike so many out there...a real, heartwarming educational story. Morgan Freeman's narration is superb. I recommend this to everyone! You will not be disappointed.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've seen this movie twice in the theater, and I can't wait to buy it. Penguins are amazing animals, and this film tells such a beautiful and honest story. The dedication of the film makers is rare. My family and I laughed, cried, and cheered for these cute and wonderful creatures.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I saw this at my friend's house and I immediately loved it. It is such a great, amazing heartwarming story. It really shows how tough those penguins are. Event though it has its sad points, I would reccommend this movie to everybody.
Guest More than 1 year ago
We took our supercharged 4 year-old grandson to see this movie. He was absolutely spellbound He talked about it for days and still becomes animated when he sees a picture of a penguin.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of the most moving films I have seen in a long time. I have nothing but admiration and respect for the determination these penguins have and their incredible strength and single-mindedness. Their arduous journey really touched me. If you want to see diligent work in action, watch this film. Imagine walking 70 miles on an empty stomach in the worst weather !
Guest More than 1 year ago
March of the Penguins goes into depth regarding the survival and the struggle of Emperor penguins against the harsh storm of the Antarctic. Impressive shots of the parents having a heart stopping moments together prior to mating, including hands-on footage of babies exploring their worlds for the first time. The incredible narrative by Morgan Freeman takes you on the inside look through the trek and the survival of these majestic birds, the triumph over tragedy, and with the best of all, a close up on the behaviors of these hardy, but beautiful birds. Incredible breathtaking shots compliments the film which includes the acclaimed musical score. A highly recommended film for devoted bird lovers and for those who are interested in becoming one.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a must see, You cannot live a complete life without first seeing this movie, I learned so much from this film
Guest More than 1 year ago
But for the made-for-America narrative in which we are told "This is a love story," I would have given it 5 stars, for I was fascinated by the story of the penguins' grueling trek, their survival and nurturing of the young. This was a beautiful documentary and was deserving of more than Disney-fying the narrative. Let's hope that National Geographic goes back to straight docs. Still, it is definitely worth seeing!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
i saw this movie in the theater with a friend of mine and it was a verry amazing and touching film.and mogan freemen tells the story verry well in this documentury it will be added to my dvd collection
Guest More than 1 year ago
I saw this wonderful movie here in Iceland with French narrator and I enjoyed every minute. I wish it would be longer (only 80 minutes)but anyhow it´s a lovely movie and everyone should have it. That´s why I purchased it on DVD so I´m able to watch it again and again. Thank you.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a fantastic movie. I appreciate penguins for their steadfast work in harsh conditions, and caring for their young. I believe humans could learn alot from this dedication they have in their lives.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a great movie. I plan on buying it as soon as possible. It's funny, sad and heartwarming. I think most people will enjoy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Great movie. I laughed and cried. Made me love penguins even more than I do now.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I took my 7 year old to see this and I thought I liked it more, that was until he got home and asked to go see it again. I would recommend everyone see this movie very very well done. This is a great movie for adults and parents to see with their kids.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Saw March of the Penguins in the movie theater this past summer. Inside 2 minutes, it totally transported me from a hazy-hot day to the sub-zero Antarctica. Highly recommend for anyone fascinated with nature and life on earth.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you want to see hard work in action, see this movie. I have nothing but admiration and respect for the industrious penguins and the harsh conditions they endure to feed their young. Their diligence and perseverance are awe-inspiring.
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