(Cardio Workout And Reviewing Movies At The Same Time)
DATE REVIEWED: 01/06/2017
TITLE: Planet Earth, Episode 4
TIME RIDDEN / FILM LENGTH: 1 hour
DISTANCE RIDDEN WHILE VIEWING: 12.3 miles
TOTAL CINEMA MILES LOGGED: 5971.8 miles
SYNOPSIS: (from Wikipedia)
26 March 2006
22 April 2007
This episode explores "Planet Earth's final frontier": caves. At a depth of 400 metres (1,300 ft), Mexico's Cave of Swallows is Earth's deepest Pit Cave freefall drop, allowing entry by BASE jumpers. Its volume could contain New York City's Empire State Building. In this episode divers explore the otherworldly cenotes of the Yucatán Peninsula, appearing to be flying in water (because it is so clear), allowing viewers a glimpse of the hundreds of kilometers of caves which have already been mapped. Also featured is Borneo's Deer Cave and Gomantong Cave. Inhabitants of the former include three million wrinkle-lipped free-tailed bat, which have deposited guano on to an enormous mound. In Gomantong Cave, guano is many metres high and is blanketed with hundreds of thousands of cockroaches and other invertebrates. Also depicted are eyeless, subterranean creatures, such as the Texas blind salamander and (bizarrely) a species of crab. Carlsbad Caverns National Park is featured with its calcite formations. Mexico's Cueva de Villa Luz is also featured, with its flowing stream of sulphuric acid and snottite formations made of living bacteria. A fish species, the shortfin molly, has adapted to this habitat. The programme ends in New Mexico's Lechuguilla Cave (discovered in 1986) where sulphuric acid has produced unusually ornate, gypsum crystal formations.
Planet Earth Diaries reveals how a camera team spent a month among the cockroaches on the guano mound in Gomantong Cave and describes the logistics required to photograph Lechuguilla. Permission for the latter took two years and local authorities are unlikely to allow another visit.
CONCEPT IN RELATION TO THE VIEWER: Each time I watch this series I am mystified at how they filmed parts of this. Mother nature has her own sewer system and it isn’t always pretty.
PROS AND CONS: Like I have said in the past, the visuals and narration are unparallelled, the violence is graphic.
Other than that, I don’t have much to say that hasn’t already been said about this series. It is probably the best documentary that I own, and certainly the best on nature.
When my new house has holo-screens for walls, I am going to have this whole series running in a loop as my household screensaver.
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 Strava.com.