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Thread: Grizzly Man - 08/12/05

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    Combat Missions Fan Wolf's Avatar
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    Grizzly Man - 08/12/05


    from rottentomatoes.com
    Grizzly Man 08/12/05

    THEATRICAL RELEASE
    Aug 12, 2005 NYC/LA


    Directed by Werner Herzog


    SYNOPSIS
    In his mesmerizing new film GRIZZLY MAN, acclaimed director Werner Herzog explores the life and death of amateur grizzly bear expert and wildlife preservationist Timothy Treadwell. Treadwell lived unarmed among the bears for thirteen summers, and filmed his adventures in the wild during his final five seasons. In October 2003, Treadwell's remains, along with those of his girlfriend, Amie Huguenard, were discovered near their campsite in Alaska's Katmai National Park and Reserve. They had been mauled and devoured by a grizzly, the first known victims of a bear attack in the park. (The bear suspected of the killings was later shot by park officials.) In GRIZZLY MAN, Herzog plumbs not only the mystery of wild nature, but also the mystery of human nature as he chronicles Treadwell's final years in the wilderness. Herzog uses Treadwell's own startling documentary footage to paint a nuanced portrait of a complex and compelling figure while exploring larger questions about the uneasy relationship between man and nature.

    Founder of the organization Grizzly People, Treadwell devoted his life to the preservation of bears, co-authored a book with Jewel Palovak, Among Grizzlies, and educated thousands of schoolchildren about bears. Treadwell also used his charisma and growing celebrity to spread the grizzly gospel, appearing on television shows including The Late Show with David Letterman, downplaying the dangers of his encounters.

    But was Timothy Treadwell a passionate and fearless environmentalist who devoted his life to living peacefully among Alaskan grizzly bears in order to save them? Or was he a deluded misanthrope whose reckless actions resulted in his own death, as well as those of his girlfriend and one of the bears he swore to protect?

    Not everyone believed in Treadwell's unorthodox research. Some locals said that by living among the grizzlies he was crossing a line that had been respected by native Alaskans for thousands of years. Wildlife experts expressed concerns that by taking away the bears' natural fear of humans - and portraying the animals as cuddly companions - he was doing them more harm than good. And while one of the ostensible reasons for his Alaska trips was to protect grizzlies from poachers, park officials contended that poaching was never a serious threat to the thousands of grizzlies living in the Kodiak archipelago.

    Adding more fuel to the controversy is the fact that aspects of Treadwell's life remained shrouded in mystery until his death. He lied about his background even to his close friends, claiming to be Australian when in fact he was from a middle-class family in suburban New York. He had a history of serious drug and alcohol problems and had had several run-ins with the law before devoting his life to bears, which he credited with turning his life around.

    At the heart of GRIZZLY MAN is the spectacular footage of enormous grizzlies hunting, playing and fighting just feet from Treadwell and his camera. Treadwell shot these scenes over his last five visits to the Alaskan wilderness, apparently with the intention of creating a wildlife documentary. Even more fascinating are the times Treadwell turns the camera on himself, alternately testifying to his almost religious love for the grizzlies and revealing less exalted, all too human emotions, including vanity, rage, paranoia and loneliness.

    To provide perspective on his subject, Herzog interviews Treadwell's friends, family and colleagues as well as environmentalists and wildlife experts, whose opinions about Treadwell vary as widely as Alaska's extreme landscape.


    MPAA RATING
    R, for language

    RUNTIME
    1 hour, 43 minutes

    RELEASE COMPANY
    Lions Gate Films

    GENRE
    Education/General Interest, Death, Documentary, Theatrical Release, Nature, Bears, Alaska, Wildlife, Meditation, Nature

  2. #2
    Leia-Jakita-Arendt OnMyLunchBreak's Avatar
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    I saw this movie last night. From the opening shot you know that Timothy Treadwell is not a normal human being. But, in his attempt to "become" a bear over 13 summers of living with the grizzly's of Alaska, Treadwell is also not a normal wildlife enthusiast either.

    He styles himself the protector of the grizzlys, yet the bears he "protects" live on federally protected land and poaching in the area is very minimal. The Forest Service has repeatedly asked him to leave and furthermore not to get so close to the animals. Then there is a very disturbing scene where Treadwell practically worships some bear scat.

    The tragedy, of course, is that Treadwell did love these animals in his own, strange and often transparently Freudian way but he died at the paws of one. The bigger tragedy, to me, was that his girlfriend, Amy, who had accompanied him for the season, died alongside him. She was actually afraid of the bears and yet, when they were attacked, she fought to save Timothy.

    Most of the footage is Treadwell's own and it gives one a glimpse into the disturbed mind of this "naturalist" quite well. It also, I think, says a great deal about where the boundaries of humanity lie. The romantic notions of bonding with animals and leaving our fake human existence in civilization make fantastic fiction books, but the reality of such an existence is actually quite alarming, dangerous and perhaps, wrong.

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    FORT Fan julitta's Avatar
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    Discovery Channel is showing this documentary Friday, Feb.3, 8 eastern, 7 central time. I saw it in the theater. it's good, but slightly disturbing. in my opinion, definitely worth watching.

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    FORT Fogey JamiLee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OnMyLunchBreak View Post
    I saw this movie last night. From the opening shot you know that Timothy Treadwell is not a normal human being. But, in his It also, I think, says a great deal about where the boundaries of humanity lie. The romantic notions of bonding with animals and leaving our fake human existence in civilization make fantastic fiction books, but the reality of such an existence is actually quite alarming, dangerous and perhaps, wrong.
    very well put

    I thought the director did an amazing job with this especially when it was mentioned he had over 100 hours of footage to sort through and came up with what he did. We could have done without the poop. That was just wacko (JMO) then I was thinking eeks what the hell he must have cut out even worse. Overall I found it sad but, thought this was well done and in good taste. Not playing the sound from the video especially and the director's comments regarding that.
    The Pats will be back next year. Watch out.....

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    JR.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JamiLee View Post
    Not playing the sound from the video especially and the director's comments regarding that.
    But that's what people wanted to hear. When the movie was being promoted, it was noted that there was audio, but it wasn't said that it wouldn't be played. I took the part with the director listening to the audio with headphones on, and then saying it needed to be destroyed, as a slap in the face. There was no need for that scene other than to make himself out to be above that sort of thing.

  6. #6
    FORT Fan julitta's Avatar
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    i knew ahead of time that the audio wouldn't be played. i saw a piece on the documentary on tv, and read a few reviews before it opened in madison. i'm actually glad that they didn't play it. i'm not sure i would have gone to see it if they did. i'm already paranoid enough where i clap my hands every 30 seconds, and make loud noises when i'm away from the house. and we only have black bears by us. i tought it was enough just to hear him say what was on the tape.

    besides treadwell being obviously crazy, does anyone else think he did have some sort of voodoo, magical, crazy type way with animals? i can't believed he survived as long as he did.

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