This documentary goes to coral reefs of the Bahamas and the waters of the Kingdom of Tonga for a close encounter with the surviving tribes of the ocean: wild dolphins and belugas, the love ... See full summary »
Venturing into the wilds of China, "Born in China" captures intimate moments with a panda and her growing cub, a young golden monkey who feels displaced by his baby sister, and a mother snow leopard struggling to raise her two cubs.
Like others, I had very high hopes when I heard that Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet would be narrating this IMAX film, and that Danny Elfman would be doing the score. However, I was quite disappointed in those elements that attracted my attention to the movie.
The style of Winslet and Depp's narration might be fine for kids, I suppose, but I found it very irritating. Perhaps I'm brainwashed by decades of authoritative-sounding old men with big voices narrating nature documentaries, but I don't think that's all it is. The narration style here is just silly. And not in a good way (although the way Winslet and Depp voiced the exchange I used as the title of my review did provoke plenty of unintentional(?) laughter, and my girlfriend and I still quote the lines occasionally).
Danny Elfman's score, while not outright bad like the narration, did strike me as overwrought and corny (again, I suppose it's fine if viewed as intended only for young children).
And as another reviewer has also noted, the foley was really over the top in this documentary. The fake squealing vocalizations of the sea creatures was particularly irksome and inappropriate.
The film is still worth watching for the amazing underwater footage, but shots intended to be seen in IMAX 3D don't have the same overwhelming impact on the TV screen.
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