Watching all eight episodes of David Attenborough's latest 'One Planet' was an experience of sheer pleasure and one of the highlights so far of 2019. Have also not seen anything this good from Netflix in a long time. Attenborough has had a remarkably consistent decades-long career, it is rare to have someone to not have anything bad in their resume/filmography but Attenborough is one of those people. Everything that makes his best so great is here, even if it is not quite among his freshest or most ground-breaking.
"Forests" is a wonderful conclusion to a wonderful series, where the weakest episode "Fresh Water" was still exceptionally high quality. Then again, what do you expect from Attenborough? The visuals consistently left me in awe, felt such a lot of emotions, really connected with the various animals and learnt such a lot. Can understand why the conservation/environmental aspect bothered some, it wasn't a problem really with me because it did pick up on things that has needed to be addressed in a while no matter how uncomfortable it makes one feel.
Such a lot is fantastic here for the same reasons as the previous episodes, which shows how consistent the quality of 'Our Planet' was. It is no surprise that "Forests" is visually stunning, expected a lot on that front and it delivered and more. Have not seen forests captured on film so breath-takingly in a while, it is a very striking environment yet also an uncompromising one (all the habitats/enviroments fare the same, especially the Arctic in "Frozen Worlds"). Have been captivated by the photography, which boasts such rich colours and is almost cinematic. The intimacy of it is incredible too, seeing Siberian tigers for example up close was something quite unique for me. The music fits with the mood and didn't come over as intrusive.
Regardless of whether what is covered is not as fresh as the rest of 'Our Planet', it still entertains, moves and educates. There is nothing too cute, too reassuring or too one-sided. The animals are easy to relate to without being over-humanised, as are their increasingly unpredictable struggles. The eagles in particular. With the conservation/environmental aspect which has been criticised and controversial, am one of those who didn't feel that it was too much of a lecture. It made me think of the causes, consequences and how to stop it and it is something important to talk about and be addressed.
As one can expect, the narration is very thought-provoking and never rambling or speculative. There are some interesting individual feeling stories here throughout and so many of the species are easy to relate to. A lot of information is covered but felt properly explored and not rushed or disjointed, and the facts educate and illuminate while not being compromised for the emotionally complex storytelling. Once again, Attenborough's distinctive and unequalled narrative delivery, with his unmistakable voice, is sincere, enthusiastic as well as understated. One can listen to him for a long time and not tire of him, no other nature/wildlife documentary narrator/presenter has made me feel this way.
Overall, couldn't have asked for a better conclusion to a captivating series. 10/10
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