7.9/10
11,272
152 user 101 critic

Winged Migration (2001)

Le peuple migrateur (original title)
Trailer
1:57 | Trailer
Documentary on the migratory patterns of birds, shot over the course of three years on all seven continents.

Directors:

Jacques Perrin, Jacques Cluzaud (co-director) | 1 more credit »

Writers:

Jean Dorst (collaboration), Stéphane Durand | 4 more credits »
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Philippe Labro Philippe Labro ... Narrator (English version)
Jacques Perrin ... Narrator (voice)
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Storyline

This documentary follows several species of migratory birds over a four year filming period. These birds travel several hundreds if not thousands of miles toward the equator in the autumn, and make the return journey to their higher latitude summer homes in the spring, always taking the same route, using the natural compasses of the universe, the stars, to find their way. Some species, like the arctic tern, even fly from pole to pole. These long and often torturous treks are a matter of survival, to live in a hospitable climate and find sources of food. With the exception of migratory penguins, travel over oceans is especially difficult as the birds have little refuge unless there is something floating on the water, such as a ship, on which to land. Otherwise they must continue flying until they reach land. Some will not survive the migration due to predators, including man, illness or injury. Although the migrations themselves are done as a community, once the birds reach their ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France | Germany | Switzerland | Spain | Italy

Language:

French

Release Date:

29 August 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Winged Migration See more »

Filming Locations:

Monument Valley, Arizona, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

FRF160,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$33,128, 20 April 2003

Gross USA:

$11,689,053

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$34,128,314
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

DTS-ES | Dolby Digital EX

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Filmmakers exposed the eggs of some of the birds to the sounds of people and film cameras so that the birds would not be afraid of them later. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: The story of bird migration is the story of promise - a promise to return.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Train 48: Episode #1.8 (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Le Retour Des Grues
("Return of the Cranes")
Music Composed and orchestrated by Bruno Coulais
(P) & © 2001 Galatée Films
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Domestic Birds
31 March 2004 | by ucbengelSee all my reviews

I was quite pleased with this movie until I watched the "behind the scenes" featurette on the DVD. It turns out that most of the extraordinary close-ups of winged flight that make the movie memorable are NOT of wild migrating birds. Rather, the filmakers raised and domesticated all sorts of birds through a process known as "imprinting" so they would be comfortable flying next to the noisy photography planes. Then they took their birds all over the world to dramatic backdrops like the Sahara and Monument Vally. They also used these domesticated birds for the dramatic set pieces revolving around birds trapped in sludge, stuck in a blizzard, escaping cages, or wandering the desert. Not only are these set pieces heavy-handed and overly dramatic, but the fact that the birds are not even wild and were placed in these situations really undermines the credibility of the film.

7 out of 10 (minus 1 point for the use of domesticated birds and minus 2 for putting ridiculously staged drama scenes in an otherwise beautiful nature film)


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