“The wild creatures of planet Earth, and their struggles and triumphs, are of epic proportions, and are best told on the big screen.”
~ Roy E. Disney
The Disneynature documentary “Earth” came to US theaters on Earth Day, 2009, and is the feature-length version of the Discovery/BBC TV series, “Planet Earth“. The documentary followed the stories of three animal families over the course of one year, as well as the goings-on in their parts of the world. It has an all-star narrative cast: James Earl Jones (USA version), Patrick Stewart (UK version), Ulrich Tukur (German version), and Ken Watanabe (Japanese version), and was a highly anticipated release. I had really wanted to see the whole TV series, but wasn’t sure if I could devote the time, so I was excited to watch this film. While some may see nature documentaries as “fluff”, the truth is that they contain some of the most magnificently beautiful cinematography, and bring us to places in the world to witness phenomenons that we may never be able to see in person in our lifetimes, as well as bring the realities of these far off places to us, helping us to understand our place in nature, and what effects our actions can have on this planet we all share. “Earth” was no exception – it was not only educational, but also gorgeous, and at many times, breathtaking.
Here’s the trailer:
– “Planet Earth” has over 4,000 days of cinematography. The combined budget of “Earth” and the TV series (over $40 million) make it the biggest documentary production ever.
– This is the first production ever to shoot aerials of the Mt. Everest. Due to the altitude it is not possible to use helicopters and jet planes are too fast to get proper results. Unique access to a Nepalese Army spy plane enabled the production to shoot the first aerials ever.
As I said before, this documentary is absolutely gorgeous, and I believe well worth a watch. I have heard critiques that it’s basically a compressed version of “Planet Earth”, which is understandable, but disappointing if you’d already watched the TV series and expected new footage in this version. Since I hadn’t seen “Planet Earth” I was able to enjoy “Earth” on its own. If you get a chance to see this film on disc, be sure to watch the “Earth Diaries: The Making Of earth The Movie” featurette – the lengths the filmmakers went to capturing these images is astounding.