Werner Herzog's (anybody besides me remember "Fitzcarraldo"?) new film .
We were out all day yesterday, after finally signing with the real estate agent. We've been scrambling all week, working every day, painting, changing out ceiling fans, working in the yard, trying to get all the details worked out for selling the house. So after signing the papers we decided to take the day off. Sunset magazine has an "Idea House" they just opened up in Orange County, so we went down to see that, then went to dinner at the beach. George went with us and we celebrated signing the papers and our 19th anniversary (August 23rd) at the same time. Emilie was off to a Toby Keith concert.
Afterwards we went up to Pasadena to look for a sleeper sofa to use at the rental for a few months. More on that later. Driving down Colorado Blvd. I saw a theater with "Grizzly Man" playing. I had heard an interview with Herzog on NPR and the movie sounded very interesting. We got tickets for the 10:15 show. Now I am an early riser, and also have an early bedtime, so it is unheard of for me wanting to see a movie this late. My wife and George were looking at me funny. But we went, although I was worried that I might fall asleep during the film. I needn't have been concerned.
This is one of the most riveting movies I have ever seen. It probably appears to be a nature documentary to most folks, but this has very little in common with a movie like "March of the Penguins". Now, I liked "March", but compared to this film, it was like watching grass grow.
If you enjoy nature, or photography, documentaries, or studies in human psychology, GO SEE THIS MOVIE. Do not bring little children, but my 15 year old son couldn't stop talking about it afterwards. Be prepared for some colorful language from the main character, and while there aren't any gory scenes, there are some gory descriptions.
The story is sad, fascinating, hilarious, pathetic and, in places, quite touching. It is the story of Timothy Treadwell, who spent 13 summers living alone with the grizzlies in Alaska. Treadwell was a very troubled man, and in the end the bears killed him. No, I didn't just wreck it for you, his death is mentioned in the first scenes of the movie. Herzog interviews people who knew Treadwell and intersperses it with the footage that he shot of himself and the bears. Treadwell left behind hundreds of hours of film. For years he traveled to schools and gave presentations during the winter months. He believed that he was saving the bears from humans, although, as the film brings out, these animals aren't much in need of saving. In fact, it becomes obvious after a while that it was Timothy who was being saved by the bears.
In some ways, this film is like watching a train wreck, at times you want to avert your eyes, but can't. I guarantee you won't be bored by this movie.