"Dolphins and Whales 3D: Tribes of the Ocean" is a 42-minute nature documentary from 2008, so this one has its 10th anniversary next year. It was directed by Jean-Jacques Mantello, who actually shot quite a few underwater documentaries in his career and as the title says the focus in this one here is on dolphins and whales. And it may be his best career effort so far. It has a very clean structure. You read the name of the species on the screen and afterward see video recordings while listening to the narrator provide some information. The narrator in my case, i.e. the German version, was successful actress Martina Gedeck, while audiences from the English-speaking countries get to listen to Daryl Hannah and Charlotte Rampling. As for Gedeck, I think she did what was necessary and overall delivered fine narration. The few moments where the texts get a little too poetic for their own good are nothing you can blame her for. Another minor criticism: The way in which the environmental message got rushed in near the very end was not too adequate I would say, but I guess it is still better than leaving it out completely. Other than that, I think it is a great success. The video footage is nothing short of amazing, the audio manages to be interesting and informative without ever getting too scientific or not scientific enough. I may be a bit biased as I am indeed a sucker for animal documentaries, but this little IMAX movie was really good and I think I am neutral enough to say that still as fish and underwater documentaries are frequently not as much to my liking as documentaries about prairie wildlife for example. But this one here is, even to a level where IO would say that this is at this point right now my favorite short film of 2008. Do not miss it. Final note: Manatees are the coolest thing ever.
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