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 ...
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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 »
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 ... 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 »
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 »
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 »
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 »
We begin on planet Earth, with a demonstration of measuring distances using triangulation. Then, an imaginary voyage begins from earth to the moon, on to Mars, Saturn, the closest star (... See full summary »
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 female; he inserts his third arm in her respiratory cavity. We watch another pair: a larger female is the aggressor here. Mating is repeated over hours and days. With high magnification, we see many sperm; she releases strings of fertilized eggs that hang from the roof of a nest. She guards it for a month, fanning the strings to circulate water for oxygen and cleanliness. We watch the eggs up close develop at 1,400 times nature's rate. Then they're born and propel away.Written by
Thirty years after he first had an octopus slither over a sleeping woman in DEVIL FISH, Painlevé returns to the subject, with sound and beautiful color photography --- well, it would be beautiful, if it weren't for the fact they're octopuses, Painlevé's narration is dark and scary in tone and Pierre Henry's score is creepy. I'd say it's standard for him, but nothing he did was standard.
Like many of his shorts, this one concerns itself with the peculiarities of his subject, and in particular, its reproduction. I'm not going to go into details -- the IMDb has warned me about frank and accurate language before, particularly when it involves words with precisely four letters in them -- but if you want to learn about the octopus, this is a good film for it.
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