"This is the story of life meeting and conquering the bleakest environment on Earth."
Oscar-winning Disney documentary, directed by James Algar, about life in the Arctic (filmed in Canada). As with the other Disney nature documentaries I've seen from this period, the beautiful photography of the scenery and wildlife is what makes this worth recommending. There's exciting footage of rushing rivers and glaciers breaking apart and playful footage of polar bears playing, etc. Oliver Wallace's excellent score compliments the action well. A good thing, too, as Winston Hibler's monotone narration can be sleep-inducing. There have been many similar television and film documentaries in the decades since this was made but the footage here is so good it still manages to impress. Some scenes were staged, including the unpalatable 'lemming suicide' scene. Today, where discussions of the environment are concerned, there are inevitable axes to grind and flags to be raised. What's refreshing about seeing older docs, such as White Wilderness, is that they are just trying to provide a look at nature's many wonders in an informative and entertaining way. There's no agenda. Some elements may be dated but, for the most part, this is still a great documentary with lovely nature photography that should please most viewers.
- Dec 23, 2015
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