DVD & Blu-ray Reviews

Planet Ocean, Blu-ray (2012/2013)

A gorgeous nature film with a strong message about saving our oceans.

Published on May 7, 2013

    Planet Ocean, Blu-ray (2012/2013)

    Directors: Yann Arthus-Bertrand, Michael Pitiot
    Narrator: Josh Duhamel
    Studio: Universal 61126490 [4/9/13]
    Video: 1.78:1 for 16:9 1080p HD color
    Audio: English DTS-HD MA 5.1, DTS 5.1 in Portuguese, Czech, Italian, Russian, Japanese & Spanish
    Subtitles: English, French, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, Portuguese, Dutch, Spanish, Thai, Italian Czech, Danish Dutch, Finnish
    Dubbed tracks: French, Spanish, Portuguese, Czech, Italian, Japanese, Russian
    All regions
    Extras: Three Making of Planet Ocean featurettes: In the Skies Above Rio, Underwater, Shanghai
    Length: 93 minutes
    Rating: *****

    This is not just another documentary on the oceans.  First, it has some really special images of our amazing oceans, which are the source of all life on this planet. The French directors had a terrific team of international underwater cinematographers working with them and plenty of scientific support. It doesn’t just entertain with beautiful undersea images, but explains about some of the greatest mysteries of our planet. Second, it has a very strong educational purpose in reminding all viewers of the special bond between humans and nature, and the duty we have to respect and protect our oceans and the life in them. This is reinforced by a series of titles at the end which list some of the things we could do to improve our ocean world.

    The documentary shows exactly how important the oceans are to all life on this earth; how vital they are to our entire ecosystem. Some of the aspects which are shown may already be familiar, but you will be introduced to many new ones as well. I, for one, didn’t know about all the varieties of seaweed being raised in Bali; both as food and many other uses. The immensity of our oceans and the terrible things which industrial civilization is doing to them are clearly shown. Just as we are destroying the non-oceanic world with global warming, it is affecting the oceans just as badly. Glaciers are melting and putting unwanted fresh water into the oceans, ocean plankton—which many animals depend on—are moving slowly northward, making damaging changes in migration patterns.  The supposedly unpollutible ocean is being polluted extensively. Certain species, such as the tuna in the Mediterranean, are being overfished to extinction. The population explosion is also affecting our planet.

    Josh Duhamel’s voiceover is excellent, but the content of it is what should be the viewer’s focus. This superb documentary teaches some of the things that we can do to help save our oceans before it is too late.

    —John Sunier




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