Monday, December 21, 2015

Cinema Cycle - Planet Earth (Disc 1)

(Cardio Workout And Reviewing Movies At The Same Time)


DATE VIEWED: 12/21/2015

TITLE: Planet Earth (Disc 1)


TIME RIDDEN / FILM LENGTH: 2 hour 36 minutes



SYNOPSIS: (from Wikipedia)
Original air date
US air date
UK viewers (in millions)
"From Pole to Pole"
5 March 2006
25 March 2007
9.41 million viewers (34% audience share)[12]
The first episode illustrates a journey around the globe and reveals the effect of gradual climatic change and seasonal transitions en route. During Antarctica's winter, emperor penguins endure four months of darkness, with no food, in temperatures of −70 °C (−94 °F). Meanwhile, as spring arrives in the Arctic,polar bear cubs take their first steps into a world of rapidly thawing ice. In northern Canada, 3 millioncaribou complete an overland migration of 3,200 kilometres (2,000 mi), longer than that of any animal, and are hunted by wolves during its journey. The forests of eastern Russia are home to the Amur leopard; with a population of just 40 individuals in the wild, it is now the world's rarest cat. This is primarily because of the destruction of its habitat, and Attenborough states that it "symbolises the fragility of our natural heritage". However, in the tropics, the jungle that covers 3% of the planet's surface supports 50% of its species. Other species shown include New Guinea's birds of paradise, African hunting dogs in their efficient pursuit of impala, elephants in Africa migrating towards the waters of the Okavango Delta, a seasonal bloom of life in the otherwise arid Kalahari Desert, and 300,000 migrating Baikal teal, containing the world's entire population of the species in one flock.
The Planet Earth Diaries segment shows how the wild dog hunt was filmed unobtrusively with the aid of theHeligimbal, a powerful, gyro-stabilised camera mounted beneath a helicopter.[11]
12 March 2006
25 March 2007
8.57 million viewers (30% audience share)[12]

The Baltoro Glacier in the Karakoram, Pakistan
The second instalment focuses on the mountains. All the main ranges are explored with extensive aerial photography. Ethiopia's Erta Ale is the longest continually erupting volcano—for over 100 years. On the nearby highlands, geladas (the only primate whose diet is almost entirely grass) inhabit precipitous slopes nearly five kilometres (3 mi) up, in troops that are 800-strong: the most numerous of their kind. Alongside them live thecritically endangered walia ibex, and both species take turns to act as lookout for predatory Ethiopian wolves. The Andes have the most volatile weather and guanacos are shown enduring a flash blizzard, along with an exceptional group sighting of the normally solitary puma. The Alpine summits are always snow-covered, apart from that of the Matterhorn, which is too sheer to allow it to settle. Grizzly bear cubs emerge from their den for the first time in the Rockies, while Himalayan inhabitants include rutting markhor, golden eagles that hunt migrating demoiselle cranes, and the rare snow leopard. At the eastern end of the range, the giant panda cannot hibernate due to its poor nutriment of bamboo and one of them cradles its week-old cub. Also shown is the Earth's biggest mountain glacier—the Baltoro in Pakistan, which is 70 kilometres (43 mi) long and visible from space.
Planet Earth Diaries explains how difficult it was to get close-up footage of snow leopards; it was a three-year process and is the world's first-ever video footage of snow leopards.[13]
"Fresh Water"
19 March 2006
15 April 2007
8.83 million viewers (32% audience share)[12]
The fresh water programme describes the course taken by rivers and some of the species that take advantage of such a habitat. Only 3% of the world's water is fresh, yet all life on land ultimately depends on it. Its journey begins as a stream in the mountains, illustrated by Venezuela's Tepui, where there is a tropical downpour almost every day. It then travels hundreds of kilometres before forming rapids. With the aid of some expansive helicopter photography, one sequence demonstrates the vastness of Angel Falls, the world's highest free-flowing waterfall. Its waters drop unbroken for nearly 1,000 metres (3,000 feet) and are blown away as a mist before they reach the bottom. In Japan, the water is inhabited by the biggest amphibian, the two-metre long giant salamander, while in the Northern Hemisphere, salmon undertake the largest freshwater migration, and are hunted en route by grizzly bears. The erosive nature of rivers is shown by the Grand Canyon, created over five million years by the Colorado River. Also featured aresmooth coated otters repelling mugger crocodiles and the latter's Nile cousin ambushing wildebeest as they cross the Mara River. roseate spoonbills are numerous in the Pantanal and are prey to spectacled caiman. In addition, there are cichlids, piranhas, river dolphins and swimming crab-eating macaques.
Planet Earth Diaries shows how a camera crew filmed a piranha feeding frenzy in Brazil—after a two-week search for the opportunity.[14]

CONCEPT IN RELATION TO THE VIEWER:   The diversity of life on the planet and how beautiful and violent it can be.  

PROS AND CONS: For all those urban dwellers that consider going for a hike or visiting the zoo as ‘getting back to nature’, you are really missing the point.  

The word that kept popping out of my mouth as I watched this was “Wow”.  The visual aspect of the series is simply stunning.  I mean really, this make National Geographic look like a cartoon at times.  

More of a homage to the planet and a postcard for humanity.  If I had children, they would be watching this a lot, along with some other choice documentaries I have in my collection.  This just became one of my favorites.

To read an overview of this project, check out this status posting.  

This film is a part of my LaserDisc Collection.

Clicking on the title will take you to the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) entry for this film. 

This film was viewed while exercising on my recumbent cycle.  A summary of my time spent working out on my journey through movie-land can be found on

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