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Living with Wildlife


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I'm teaching a class on Herzog's "Grizzly Man" and want to mention a few other films, docs and features, about people who live with/identify with wild animals.

 

 

Any suggestions would be great.

 

 

The one that's gnawing at my brain and I can't remember its name is set in the early 20th century and features a researcher who's dropped off with his gear in Alaska and who lives with the wolves- eventually identifying with them. I think he's naked at the end running around with the pack.

 

 

Thanks!

 

 

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Since you said features, as well as docs, *Jungle Book* 1942 comes to mind. There are probably other movies of Kipling's tales of Mowgli.

 

There is a doc, whose name escapes me at the moment, about a guy who raises young Canada Geese (IIRC,) and teaches them to migrate, by having them follow him as he flies an ultralight.

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I remember watching it on TV. I'm not sure if this is it:

 

http://www.wildfilmhistory.org/film/106/TheFlightoftheSnow+Geese.html

 

This site may also have other films, as well.

 

There was also a sequel to Born Free, called Living Free:

 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0068866/

 

I don't know how good that is, but without Virginia McKenna, I have my doubts.

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tapit wrote: I've also thought of "Gorillas in the Mist", but could use a few more...

 

Just so I understand...are you looking only for films about people living amongst wildlife or also movies about wild animals living with people?

 

 

 

ValentineXavier wrote: There is a doc, whose name escapes me at the moment, about a guy who raises young Canada Geese (IIRC,) and teaches them to migrate, by having them follow him as he flies an ultralight.

 

Not sure if this is what you're thinking of but both National Geographic and 20/20 had programs on Operation Migration. I had taped the 20/20 segment back in the 1990s and a few years later when the movie Fly Away Home was released I learned it was based on Operation Migration.

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"Winged Migration" is the one by the guy with the ultalight. It purported to be a documentary showing birds in actual migration, but it turned out he raised the birds from chicks and trained them to follow him. The shots are stunning, but the film is basically bogus. There's a double feature coming up on TCM of "Born Free" and "Ring of Bright Water".

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It was acknowledged in the supplementary material, but not in the advertising. As I said, the filmed flight is stunning and if it had been called "Winged Flight" or something, I wouldn't be picky about the film. It doesn't seem like migration to me if the birds are being led by an aircraft, even if it's on their natural migration routes. I'd like to know what happened the next year. Did the birds migrate on their own, or were they looking around for the damn plane?

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I don't mean to get in to deep an analysis, and I am only working from memory (which had been demonstrated to be fallible), but I remeber it being stated in the film that the concerns the filmmakers had for the geese about the coming winter was the impetus for the trip, as they lived up north (I don't remember where). The film was a document of their journey. I don't know if geese naturally fly south with other geese, or they just follow their parents because of their fixation. They must lose it sometime as they mature, but when I don't know. Perhaps there are some wildlife biologists who visit these boards who could chime in.

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{quote:title=tapit wrote:}{quote}

> I'm teaching a class on Herzog's "Grizzly Man" and want to mention a few other films, docs and features, about people who live with/identify with wild animals.

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> Any suggestions would be great.

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> The one that's gnawing at my brain and I can't remember its name is set in the early 20th century and features a researcher who's dropped off with his gear in Alaska and who lives with the wolves- eventually identifying with them. I think he's naked at the end running around with the pack.

>

>

>

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> Thanks!

>

Tapit, I hope some of these suggestions might be useful to you as well:

 

*Sequoia* (1934-Chester M. Franklin) is an early talkie that featured some remarkable footage of pumas, deer and other animals peacefully inhabiting the same frame. Starring Jean Parker, it was based on Vance Joseph Hoyt's novel and has a quiet power that is hard to forget--especially those scenes when humans are no where to be seen. I saw this on TCM some time ago, but I don't believe it has ever been available on VHS or DVD, though there might be a transfer to a DVD-r somewhere that you could view.

 

*The Yearling* (1945-Clarence Brown) might be useful for your class to examine the relationship between a boy and a fawn and the inevitable separation. This movie is on DVD and is frequently shown on TCM.

 

*Andre* (1994-George Miller) is a fictionalized account of the impact on a Maine family who formed a relationship with a sea lion who eventually went back to the wild, but continued to visit for years in the early '60s. It has some cutesy moments, but the seal's presence in and around a human home seems more impossible than endearing. This movie is on DVD.

 

*Christian the Lion* (1971-Bill Travers) is a documentary that tells the true story of a lion cub, born in a zoo, who was puchased by two London shopkeepers, who raised him in the shop window, loved him, and realized he could not stay with them. After a year, a chance meeting with Bill Travers (of Born Free fame) led to their meeting the real life George Adamson, who helped them to re-orient Christian to his natural habitat in Africa.This movie is readily available on DVD.

 

*To Walk With Lions* (1999-Carl Schultz) is a fictional dramatization of the last years of the life of George Adamson (well played by Richard Harris in the movie). The dramatic story deals with efforts to continue to protect lions and elephants in a nature preserve under great pressure in Kenya's changing environment. It is available on DVD.

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