At a marine biology station, a clump of algae reveals polyps, stomachs with limbs, limbs with buds, buds with poison cells. This animal reproduces by buds, which we watch close up in ...
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An octopus slithers into a narrow crack near the shore; we see its eye up close; blowing water propels it through water. It feeds on a crab. In spring it's time to mate. A male grabs a ... See full summary »
A close-up look at sand urchins and rock urchins. At the seashore, a man digs up a sand urchin. We look closely. He sets it back in the sand, and it burrows out of sight. Its intestines ... See full summary »
In close-ups and extreme close-ups, we watch two small species of marine crustaceans, the slender long-legged stenorhynchus and the clumsy, short-legged hyas. To blend in, both cover ... See full summary »
After a comic introduction, we look closely at a shrimp. Eyes on stilts, color patterns, pinchered walking feet, a rostrum. We watch shrimp eat using a strong claw and a fine one; we watch ... See full summary »
An enthusiastic grandfather sits with children in a Parisian park talking about pigeons. First. their physical appearance - eye, wings and tail, and color - and their varieties. Then, he ... See full summary »
A complex creature. Regular underwater photography, magnified close-ups, and film through a microscope present sea urchins. We see their mouth and five teeth close and open. After injecting... See full summary »
Titles in French and English help us know what we're seeing. In all waters, daphnia abound. They are crustaceans about 2 ml long, with one eye that turns in all directions. Antennae enable ... See full summary »
Examines the sea horse, the only fish that swims upright. We watch it use its prehensile tail to wrap around plants and other sea horses. A frontal bulge houses organs including an air ... See full summary »
At a marine biology station, a clump of algae reveals polyps, stomachs with limbs, limbs with buds, buds with poison cells. This animal reproduces by buds, which we watch close up in time-lapse images. In another kind of jellyfish, the buds grow inside then live outside for a few days until being on their own. Another produces eggs, sometimes self-fertilized. Some single eggs become buds with colonies. Another clump gathered at low tide consists of filaments of a colony - plumes with poison ends. In images taking 72 hours, we see filaments grow and produce a feeding organ from which a plume emerges. New jellyfish emerge from buds twice a day at set times to form a new colonies.Written by
Painlevé and his co-director,Geneviève Hamon, turn to the tidal waters off Cape Finistere to gather examples of three of the local varieties of jellyfish and use the usual combination of microphotography and high-speed camerawork to show us how they live and reproduce.
This is drier in tone than most of their movies, more an expository lecture on their subject with almost none of the usual black humor -- although the creepy organ music suits a subject that was a source of anxiety to me as a child bathing in the ocean, fearful that toxic jellyfish would come up and sting me to death. Of greatest interest is the openness of their methodology, showing a woman -- presumably Geneviève Hamon gathering the specimens, placing them in glass tanks, and discussing the use of ttime-lapse cameras and magnification.
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