As the sea ice melts food becomes scarce. A mother polar bear races against thawing ice, finally bringing her cubs to dry land.
Co-stars abound; Lions, cheetahs,and gazelle comprise this cast of predator and prey. Slow motion photography captures the hunt in stunning detail. Every muscle tenses as the cheetah brings down the gazelle. Stop motion photography is also used to show the changing seasons and flowers blooming. In the African wild a group of lions bring upon the end of a lone elephant. His size and strength clearly outnumbered. Instead of screening the bloody aftermath Disney cuts to another scene. A family of elephants trek across the parched African desert in search of water. They travel along the same trails generations of elephants have traveled in search of water. It is easy to anthromorphise here because when these big, beautiful creatures finally make their way, they swim, they play, and otherwise just enjoy themselves.
Humpback Whales travel the oceans through shark infested water from warm water breeding grounds to cold water feeding grounds. Treking nearly four thousand miles Humpback Whales hold the record for migration patterns.
Ducks leap from their nest. Some taking their first flight. Wolves and cheetahs hunt their prey while lions and elephants share the same watering hole.
Sophocles Tosioulis was a man who loved taking pictures. When he approached the BBC with the idea to bring Earth to the big screen they thought he was crazy. They could not understand why they would need to change. They had been producing movies for television for fifty years. After two years of negotiating an agreement was reached for five documentaries.
After two more years the movie opened internationally in 2007 with great success. In 2009 Disneynature brought the movie to the U.S. with the promise to plant a tree for every ticket sold opening week. Along with Nature Conservancy Disney helped to plant 2.7 million trees.
The movie was conceived with the idea that life is precious and to show what we stand to lose. Some believe that if images of nature are not captured now that soon it will be to late. Polar ice melts and reforms but new ice melts first because it hasn’t formed a thick shell like old ice. Krill and other life forms have been dying because of increased temperatures, this disrupts the food chain of larger animals that rely on them for survival.
In January 2008 the Japanese version of Earth grossed 18 million U. S. becoming the highest grossing documentary in Japan in ten years.
in the U. S. between April and July 2009 Earth grossed over 32 million dollars with another 76 million worldwide making it the second highest highest grossing documentary in history just behind march of the penguins.
“Of all the planets in our universe, there is only one we know that can support life. Just the right distance from the sun. This is the time to take stock of all we have and all we have to lose.” Excerpt from the opening.