Fifty years ago there were close to half-a-million lions in Africa. Today there are around 20,000. To make matters worse, lions, unlike elephants, which are far more numerous, have ...
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According to the legend of the Shangaan, white lions are the messengers of the gods, but it has been years since one has been seen in their remote African valley. When a white lion is ... See full summary »
Fifty years ago there were close to half-a-million lions in Africa. Today there are around 20,000. To make matters worse, lions, unlike elephants, which are far more numerous, have virtually no protection under government mandate or through international accords. This is the jumping-off point for a disturbing, well-researched and beautifully made cri de coeur from husband and wife team Dereck and Beverly Joubert, award-winning filmmakers from Botswana who have been Explorers-in-Residence at National Geographic for more than four years. Pointing to poaching as a primary threat while noting the lion's pride of place on the list for eco-tourists-an industry that brings in 200 billion dollars per year worldwide-the Jouberts build a solid case for both the moral duty we have to protect lions (as well as other threatened "big cats," tigers among them) and the economic sense such protection would make. And when one takes into account the fact that big cats are at the very top of the food ...Written by
Palm Springs Internation Film Festival
I saw wild lions in Kenya and Tanzania in 1983, and I am very sympathetic to their plight. I hadn't known their population had decreased to 20,000, and I completely concur with the filmmakers about the issue of dwindling habitat for so many species. However, I was irritated by the anthropomorphizing all the way through this movie, as well as by the music. I wish this had been a more straight-forward documentary. In fact, I don't think the film was all that educational. For example, I had thought that adult male lions were mainly solitary except when mating, but the movie showed a group of adult males. I would have liked to have learned more about how lions really live (including an explanation of that group of males) rather than a story that was probably made up to some extent. The lions and the scenery are beautiful, but it's obvious that to tell a story, the filmmakers must have used scenes taken at other times - probably of other animals. There's no way they could have had multiple camera angles of key scenes. I also would have been interested in seeing more of how the movie was made - the final shots of the filmmakers were tantalizing but too few. I do encourage viewers to find and donate to appropriate charities that help save wildlife habitats around the world.
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