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Despite being told that they're
embarrassing themselves, Bonnie
and Boyd Penguin continue their
gross display of public affection
in front of their single friends.

March of the Penguins
Review written by: Alex Sandell

You know you're hard up for a date, when you become jealous while watching Emperor penguins necking.  The birds are steadfast romantics, and I am categorically single.  March of the Penguins is not the first movie you'll want to see after being unceremoniously dumped by your girlfriend.  Unfortunately, it was mine. 

There I sat in a theater packed full of couples holding hands, parents cradling their children in their arms, and elderly married folks out to enjoy a movie before they kicked the bucket and to sneak a quick kiss like they did before their expiration date read "rotten."  Yes, there I was -- single for exactly 3 days -- sitting all by myself, taking notes to use later when writing this stupid review.  And what's the movie about?  Penguins marching, mating and doing all the lovey-dovey crap that feels so good when you're the one doing it, but makes you feel so isolated and awful when you're the one sitting in the back of the theater taking notes. 

Emperor penguins march tirelessly each year to reproduce.  The females and males meet in the middle, where the ice is thick enough that it won't melt halfway through the gestation period.  After the female penguin pushes out an egg, there is a little shuffle like dance where she moves it from under her protection to her boyfriend's pot-belly.  If either the male or female messes this up, the egg will freeze and the baby penguin inside will die. 

A young couple, not experienced in the trade-off promenade, doesn't transfer their egg fast enough.  For some reason I thought it was hilarious to see the two penguins staring down at the cracked egg like a couple of trailer-park residents just figuring out that their welfare checks were cut off by a mean, corporate Government system, while looking at their 7th child laying in the cradle.  I guess it was supposed to be a tragic moment, because I was the only one in the theater who laughed, and almost every one of the "mated" people turned and glared at me in that evil way only people with mates can glare. 

So anyway, the males that know what they're doing sit on the egg while the females that know what they're doing waddle back to the ocean to find food for their babies.  Lots of other amazing physical feats of nature happen all in the name of sexual reproduction.  I haven't seen this much mating in a film since Naughty Bedtime Stories: Volume 2.  But the movie isn't all about sex (even though it is).  It's about the magic of childbirth and the natural bond found in families. 

While fairly tedious, the film does have a certain charm that makes it worth recommending.  Is it overrated?  Certainly.  Is it worth the price of a matinee?  As long as you haven't been recently dumped.  Morgan Freeman's narration is whimsical and informative.  The cinematography from Laurent Chalet and Jérôme Maison is hypnotizing. 

Hopefully we get a real energy policy and this remarkable earth can remain preserved.  What a truly glorious planet we have the privilege to temporarily inhabit.  If Mother Earth was a landlord, she'd take away our deposit and fine our butts big-time for farting out our exhaust fumes and mucking up the wonder that is HerMarch of the Penguins is an overblown National Geographic special, but it's also a breath of fresh air to rid multiplexes of the rank stench of the worst summer Hollywood has ever had.   

Agree, disagree, do you wish you had a better education?  Email Alex!

RECENT REVIEWS (click here to see ALL films reviewed in the last six months):

Corpse Bride
Lord of War
The Exorcism of Emily Rose
An Unfinished Life
The Brothers Grimm
Red Eye
The Cave
The Dukes of Hazzard
The Great Raid
The Machinist
Bad News Bears
The Island
The Devil's Rejects
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Fantastic 4
War of the Worlds
Land of the Dead
Batman Begins
Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith

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