(2017) (Documentary) (G)
- QUICK TAKE:
- Documentary: Four separate tales of survival in the wilds of modern-day China are told involving pandas, monkeys, snow leopards, and antelopes (or "chiru").
- The film follows four animal "families" as they survive one calendar year in the wilds of modern-day China. Dawa is a snow leopard trying to raise two cubs in the colder, higher elevations of the country. But her hunting ground is threatened by an intruder, who eventually gangs up on her with her three grown leopard sons. As the snow and ice get deeper and thicker, Dawa has to secure a viable prey soon or risk death.
Meanwhile, in a warmer part of China, a group of "chiru" or antelopes survive as a herd, and we see the young ones recently born attempting to walk and then run for the first time. But they are threatened by wolves, who stay on the fringes and challenge the herd to stay together and keep their strength in numbers. Meanwhile, a large panda named Ya Ya raises her cub, Mei Mei, in a distant bamboo forest. Ya Ya's biggest dilemma is when to allow her cub to climb trees and fulfill her destiny of eventually leaving one day to forge a life of her own.
Finally, we follow an adolescent monkey named Tau Tau, who is having a tough time adjusting to his newborn baby sister who is suddenly taking up all of his mother and father's attention. He starts hanging out with the "wrong crowd," a band of rogue monkeys nicknamed the "Lost Boys" and led by Rooster who live only for mischief and play but have no loyalties. As winter approaches and the predatory hawks above get more daring, Tau Tau must try and get back in his father's good graces.
- WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
- Yes indeed. The movie is rated G and photographed, narrated, and edited to appeal to elementary-school age children, in particular, and their parents and caregivers. But older tweens and teens will enjoy it, too.
- WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: G
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