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When Björk Met Attenborough (2013)

Not Rated | | Documentary | TV Movie 27 July 2013
Award-winning musician Björk and legendary broadcaster and naturalist Sir David Attenborough have admired each other's work for years but this is the first time they have discussed their ... See full summary »


Louise Hooper


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Credited cast:
David Attenborough ... Himself
Björk ... Herself
Andy Cavatorta Andy Cavatorta ... Himself
Henry Dagg Henry Dagg ... Himself
Evan Grant Evan Grant ... Himself
Matt Robertson Matt Robertson ... Himself
Oliver Sacks ... Himself
Scott Snibbe Scott Snibbe ... Himself
Tilda Swinton ... Narrator
Damian Taylor Damian Taylor ... Himself


Award-winning musician Björk and legendary broadcaster and naturalist Sir David Attenborough have admired each other's work for years but this is the first time they have discussed their mutual love of music and the natural world on screen. In this remarkable documentary, Björk explores our unique relationship with music and discovers how technology might transform the way we engage with it in the future. At the heart of the film is Biophilia, Björk's cutting-edge music project that explores where nature, music and technology meet. David Attenborough explains how music exists in the natural world and speaks about his own passion for music. Author and professor of neurology and psychiatry Oliver Sacks explains the extraordinary and beneficial effects music has on our brains and explains why performing and engaging with music is something all of us should take more seriously. Written by Anonymous

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Not Rated | See all certifications »


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Release Date:

27 July 2013 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Björk - La natura è musica See more »

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Pulse Films See more »
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User Reviews

Actually the meeting of the title is the weakest aspect, but this is still an engaging look at her process which just about stays on the right side or pretension
18 August 2013 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

This film caught my eye for the same reason I imagine many will have come to it – the title which makes it seem very much about the meeting between Icelandic musical oddity Bjork and the unmistakable David Attenborough. I was curious about why and how this would come off and assumed it would be a discussion about each other's world. In reality although this meeting is a central part of the film, the vast majority of the time is about the overall focus on the process of Bjork putting together her Biophilia project, which brings music, nature and technology together. This album I had enjoyed although I had not experienced it through the various apps and other experiences that came with it.

The actual meeting of the title is probably the weakest spot because it isn't totally clear what use they are together. As a fan Attenborough seems excited but too often Bjork seems to be doing that "over- listening" thing where she maybe isn't following his point but still makes noises and faces to show she is listening. It is a meeting that has some interest but for me mostly it felt a little awkward. The rest of the film supports it well and I was glad it worked because it took me a minute to warm to the project. This partly because Bjork struggles to make her mind and aims accessible to someone uncreative like myself – at worst it comes off a little pretentious and meaningless. Fortunately the film does well to show how these ideas grow and take shape in the use of technology, the use of different types of instrument and the creative structuring of the music as an experience; this helps overcome some of her words because it makes sense and it impressed me regarding her creativity and vision. This sense of learning and being engaged helped overcome some of the very heavy "promotion" aspects – the narration was a bit too gushing for me and sometimes it seems we were all meant to just be amazed by this project, but it did enough to semi-cover that side of the film up.

While the presence of Attenborough is headline, there are plenty of others making input and working with her and they tend to have a specific role within the project and thus their input is of more consequence and interest. So, while the title may be misleading and actually refers to the weaker parts of the film, there is still a lot to enjoy if you like Bjork and her music, because this does a good job of getting you close to the process and familiar with what she was trying to achieve. For those that don't care for Bjork but do like Attenborough though, there probably isn't too much to be said here.

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