Tuesday, 12 August 2008

The Last Continent / Le Dernier Continent

Dir: Jean Lemire (The White Planet / La Planète blanche)
Canada/France, 2008

Seen: August 10, 2008 at AMC Yonge & Dundas

Reason to see: Canadian co-pro documentary about travelling to Antarctica, sounded good to me!

Who knew 2008 would bring not only one but two documentaries about travelling to the Antarctic? I could say the world gets smaller but after seeing The Last Continent it becomes clear how big the world actually is. The team of explorers, scientists and filmmakers travel not only to the far corner of the world but they stay there for a very long time in the hopes to capture information regarding the effect of climate change to the Antarctic.

One thing about this film is that is shows when the subject of a documentary becomes something different than the original intention. Although the message is clear, the expectation and reality of the matter are different. The film carries well even considering this and the adventures of the crew teamed with stories of historical explorations are matched to the stunning visuals of a wonderful and seldom seen part of the world. There is a strong, and I found unexpected environmentatl message within the film, but I was more drawn to the beauty of the winter landscapes and wildlife.

The happy surprize is the unexpected and subtle human stories of the crew. They are hardworking and strong in tough circumstances, and also have a genuine joie de vivre which is extraordinary to see giving the extreme circumstances and the length of the journey. Bravo.

Shannon's Overall View:
I enjoyed it
I'll watch it again
I'd recommend it to documentary fans as well as people concerned with the environment

12 minutes of preshow including 3 commercial and 6 previews: Defiance, He's Just Not That Into You, The Spirit, The Duchess, Nights in Rodanthe and Miracle at St. Anna

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© Shannon Ridler, 2008

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