So, I finally made it to see March of the Penguins. I enjoyed it, in spite of the fact that I had an incredibly chatty old couple behind me. "Is that the male, no the one on the left." "Look at that, it looks cold." "What's that comin' to kill 'em, a skua?"
The movie was a tad anthropomorphic for my taste but it was incredibly beautiful. I did have to stifle a laugh as Morgan Freeman is talking about "penguin love" and the movie showed a male and female penguin moving languidly and slowly rubbing their bills over each other's bodies as new agey music swells in the background. The camera moves in close for the tender caresses and then the male gets behind the female and I was expecting the usual cloacal kiss, but it went on for at least a minute--those male penguins have stamina. It was all so artfully shot I found myself shifting in my seat from the eroticism and then I realized--I'm watching penguin sex, chill out (ha, I just inadvertently made myself laugh). The tension was broken for the rest of the audience when a small boy in back asked his mother "What are they doing?"
The movie also got a tad mellowdramatic about the unbearable, gut wrenching anguish of a female losing her chick. Ladies with children around me started to sniffle and I wanted to lean over and say, they really don't take it that hard, but I think regular people would rather think penguins suffer huge emotional strife.
The coolest part of the evening for me were the previews. My ears perked up when I heard a voice over say, "From the studio that brought you Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal" (I love Labyrinth, it's a sickness I know). Then I realized it was a preview of Mr. Neil's movie with Dave McKean called Mirrormask. They even mentioned their names (and pronounced them correctly) in the preview and called them such things as award winning and master storytellers. I felt so proud, my friend had made it to the big screen. Non Birding Bill and I saw a rough cut of it last year and I was afraid it was going to be one of those arty movies that I just wouldn't understand. I realize now that I didn't see the final editing and the wonder of Mr. McKean's artistic vision and Mr. Neil's storytelling. I'm very excited and I think I will be able to genuinely want to go see it and not do it out of politeness. It looks really cool, so check out the preview.
Now, I'm going to enjoy some more fried green tomatoes, one of my all time favorite foods. I had a very successful raid of a friend's garden last night.