By Woojung Kim, Contributing Writer
BBC Earth Films has returned with the sequel of “Earth” called “Earth: One Amazing Day.” Directed by Richard Dale, Lixin Fan and Peter Webber, the documentary illustrates the world of various animals in the course of a single day. Spiced up with the stable narration of Academy Award winner Robert Redford, the film is delightful with a dash of humor. It covers massive amounts of content, ranging from species deep down in the ocean to those flying for their lives, but with its smooth geographic transitions, it never becomes tedious. The documentary exhibits a bear finding the right tree to scratch its back on with an enamoring pose. Dale, Fan and Webber do not miss this moment and decor it with festal ballroom music, making the scene like an advertisement on social media.
The documentary mainly focuses on the offspring of species. It specifically concentrates on the interaction with their parents and the process of survival. The baby marine iguanas have to reach the top of the rocky hill from their refuge underground without getting besieged by snakes. Their journey is complex and demanding because these specific iguanas have to be exposed to the sunlight for a certain period of time in order to have the energy to move. It does not help that their predators are close on their tail, leaving them almost no time to recharge. Because the snakes can only sense the iguanas by detecting motion, the iguanas must remain perfectly still in order to complete their trek.
The camera has mind-blowing reflexes as it captures the whole course of action. The scene is edited with variations of slow and fast motion, interspersed at precise moments to raise the tension. The camerawork also shines when it shows a foal trying to cross a river with wild currents. Foals can only walk for an hour a day, but it has to persevere as it walks through tempestuous water for the first time. The currents are so strong that the foal risks drowning or being carried down the river — but with its mother encouraging it to reach her, the small foul succeeds in crossing and is reunited with its parent.
The unique story coverage allows “Earth” to encompass many genres. A sloth is taking its daily, serene nap but is woken up by a female sloth making sounds for a mate from far away. It goes on a tough, but lethargic adventure by swimming through the river, climbing onto branches of trees, until it ends up meeting a female sloth who has no interest in mating. Despite its failure, the sloth lies down on a firm branch and continues its circadian nap. The sound effects and the background music do an excellent job embellishing the particular scene romantically, making an illusion of the film as a romantic-comedy for a split second.
The film ultimately conveys the complexity of the world of animals and how mankind often neglects Mother Nature.
“Earth: One Amazing Day” opened in theaters on Friday, Oct. 6.