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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Microcosmos
Microcosmos
Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment // G // May 3, 2005
List Price: $19.99 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Jeff Paramchuk | posted April 29, 2005 | E-mail the Author
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C O N T E N T
V I D E O
A U D I O
E X T R A S
R E P L A Y
A D V I C E
Highly Recommended
E - M A I L
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P R I N T
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In 1996, Claude Nuridsany and Marie PĂ©rennou released a film so interesting and attention grabbing, that I found myself almost ten years later, giddy at the chance to watch it again, only this time on DVD. Microcosmos was the result of 15 years of research, and three years of filming, and the end result is a fantastic 80 minute journey into the day in the life of a serene alpine meadow, from a bug's point of view.

Microcosmos takes a slightly different approach to the nature documentary, not including constant narration of the onscreen action, but opting instead to let nature takes it's course. This of course ranges from the always humorous beetle rolling his ball of mud/dung only to be sent rolling down the hill he just climbed, to the strangely erotic snail mating scene and the ultra violent ring-necked pheasant reducing the size of an ant colony.

With each shot amazingly composed and fantastically edited, you'll find yourself sitting back with a child-like grin during this entire feature. There are some sequences that will make you wonder out loud how they managed to turn something that we feel is such a nuisance, like the birth of a mosquito from it's underwater cocoon, into a work of beauty.

How's it Look:

Presented in an enhanced for widescreen 1.66:1 aspect ratio, Microcosmos looks excellent for the most part. Some scenes did have a little bit of dust on them (mainly the time-lapse shots), but everything else was so crisp and clear that individual hairs on a bees thorax were visible at all times. Colors were deep and very true to life, especially noticeable after the rainstorm when the lighting conditions change slightly.

How's it Sound:

Just like the video, it's tough not to be happy with this stereo only presentation. Sounds are extremely clear and crisp, and the sound packed punch when it needed to, like during close ups of newly hatched wasps drying their wings, or when the beak of the pheasant was pounding the ground while devouring ants.

Extras:

None.

Closing thoughts:

When something is as well put together as Microcosmos, it's tough not to recommend it. As mentioned, I hadn't seen this is close to ten years, but popping this DVD in the player gave me such a thrill to finally see it again, in fact I've watched it a couple of times since receiving it just to marvel at how well put together it is. I think the fact that there is no human voice or scenes with humans in it is a blessing, because you can become fully immersed into this tiny world and enjoy all it has to offer without any distractions.

I would imagine that children would be even more fascinated by this film than adults would be, and based on my desire to watch it repeatedly, I could see the replay value of this to be extremely high. I highly recommend this DVD.
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