The latest film from Disneynature, "Penguins" waddles into theaters just in time for Earth Day.
You don't go into a movie called "Penguins" expecting much more than, well, penguins. In that regard, you get exactly what is billed (or beaked?).
"Penguins" is another successful adventure brought to us by Disneynature, the independent documentary film branch of Walt Disney Studios that has brought us films like "Earth," "Oceans," "African Cats," "Chimpanzee," "Bears" and "Born in China." Here, we embark on a trip to the barren, frozen landscapes of Antarctica, where we meet an "Adélie" (breed) penguin by the name of Steve, who is looking to start a family before the coming winter (yes, "Winter is Coming" even in a Disneynature film!).
Narrated by Ed Helms, we watch Steve and his flock go through some amazing ordeals. Penguins, it turns out, are family-oriented creatures and when they mate, they mate for life, with the same partner (#lifegoals). They face many perils just due to the bitter, icy terrain and climate, but also from predators such as killer whales and leopard seals. Being that this is Disney, you won't see these predators dig into their prey in gory detail like you might watching the National Geographic channel, but at least this movie doesn't shy completely away from the realities that these beautiful, flightless birds encounter in their natural habitat.
Picking out a penguin and naming it Steve, and then narrating its life's journey is sooooo Disney, but the approach helps to personalize what could be seen as an otherwise dry narrative...especially for little ones. For us adults, you will also be entranced by the amazing visuals and the loving nature of these interesting creatures. The best part for me? Stick around through the credits and see some behind-the-scenes shots and learn how some of these amazing visuals were achieved, and the incredible efforts that went in to making this movie.
"Penguins" is what it is, but you'll waddle out of the theater glad that you saw it on the big-screen. Even better, you can feel good about yourself knowing that you are supporting a great cause: That's because for every ticket sold during opening week (April 17th thru April 23rd) in the U.S. and Canada, Disneynature will contribute 20-cents per ticket to the Wildlife Conservation Network to support penguin conservation.
Run Time: 1 hour 16 minutes
Starring: Ed Helms
Directed by Alastair Fothergill ("Blue," "Bears," "Chimpanzee") and Jeff Wilson
In theaters April 17th, 2019.
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