Fabulous bird's-eye view of feathered fliers

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Winged Migration

OPENS SEPTEMBER 5, CERT U, 89 MINS

The team of French natural historians and film-makers who got down and dirty with meadow insects to make Microcosmos looked to the skies for their next project. It took four years to gather the footage for this remarkable film, which charts the awe-inspiring journeys of migrating birds the world over. From etiolated cranes, stalking with exaggerated elegance, to bolshy, thuggish geese that still find the energy, even after several thousand miles of flight, to squabble in mid-air?the team of cameramen actually manage to get within the flocks, flying eye to eye with the birds.

The means of capturing such extraordinarily intimate moments came from the use of a variety of new technology?compact cameras on remote controlled model gliders, model helicopters, hot air balloons and an ultra-light aircraft developed for the film. It’s as much for people interested in the technology of animal photography as it is for bird lovers. But whether or not you have a vested interest in the subject matter, there’s something humbling about these encounters with birds and their incredible journeys.