Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Winged Migration


On the surface, the movie is nothing but video clippings of birds flying - frame after frame after frame. But I am tempted to replicate the quote on my home page - "What matters is not the way things are - but the way you see them. The very change in perception changes the quality of the situation". What elevates this movie to be outstanding (or perhaps beyond) is the way the camera "sees" the birds. It gives wings to the viewers. We see the world as the birds see them - and are part of their world. We fly with the birds - if only for a brief while. Flock after flock, they travel on an adventure - across thousands of miles. What drives them to such distances and such feats no one knows. We learn through birds, what it means to be in tune with nature. With no special effects going into these videos, it is all the more amazing to watch. They dance in tandem, the fly in tandem - as if these birds know they are part of a big symphony. Only, the orchestrator is invisible, but the movie makes it clear there is one! This movie hits the mark by truly and spectacularly capturing the spirit of the situation.

The birds are absolutely at home with all natural disasters. An avalanche, they deftly move aside. As always, there is only one disaster the birds cannot cope with - that is when humans enter. We see some birds being shot while we are flying with them. The camera pictures this in a way that is heart wrenching and not gory at the same time. Humans are the only animals that hunt for pleasure. We are so screwed up on the inside, that we need to search for pleasures like hunting birds down to keep us going. To quote a wise man - "Most people are living such a miniscule portion of what they are capable of. They are not exploring so many dimensions. It is every human being's birthright that he must know who he is before he dies. If human beings realized the immensity of what is to be a human being there wouldn't be so much god talk in the planet."

We are such a small speck in this vast existence, and yet we are part of it. In the end, what remains is the feeling of a great privilege for being here. And if a movie ends up making you feel like that, it is no mean feat!

PS: David Hawkins calibrates this movie at 490.

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