Deep Blue

...or It Shouldn't Happen To A Baby Seal

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The limitless sea stretches out before us. Syrupy strings wail. The stentorian grumble of narrator Michael Gambon announces: “Our planet is a blue planet. Deep blue.” More water shots. “Deep blue,” Gambon repeats, needlessly, but with feeling. “The source of life itself!” And so begins an intercontinental oceanic megamix of now iconic, and frankly uninspired, natural history footage. Killer whales catching seal pups? Yep. Penguins jumping out of the water? Of course. Tiny comedy crabs ‘dancing’ on a beach? Natch. Gambon returns later on, during a climactic whale hunt, with an hysterically unrestrained foam-flecked commentary (“They try to push him away from the mother! They try to drown him!!”), but mostly this is visually repetitive aqua-fodder masquerading as transcendent spectacle. And while it’s not quite as pretentious as Luc Besson’s 1991 doc Atlantis, it is equally uninformative?why bother name-checking species or mentioning environmental issues when a bit of tinkly xylophone music will do? For Finding Nemo completists only.


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The Velvet Underground, The Black Crowes, Bunny Wailer, Richard Thompson, Nick Cave, Rhiannon Giddens, Laurie Anderson, Blake Mills, Postcard Records, Mogwai and The Selecter