Disneynature, a new subsidiary of the Disney franchise was founded in 2008 and to date has six feature films. It aims to take a closer look at how the world’s natural habitat exists, told with poignancy, drama and an often humorous narrative which offers viewers of all ages an alternative to Disney’s traditional animated tales.
Chimpanzee is the newest addition to Disneynature and details the early years of a young chimp called Oscar who must learn the ropes so to speak of surviving in the wild, whilst under the constant watch of his adoring mother. They, along with the rest of the gang must maintain a constant flow of food and protect both this and themselves from a rival gang who are keen to take over and destroy everything they have ever worked for and known. It is a story of courage and hope but above all sheer wonderment and beauty at how our close these animals really are to our own species.
Narrated by Tim Allen of Toy Story and Home Improvement fame, Chimpanzee is an absolute delight. Seeing Oscar for the first time is sure to melt anybody’s heart and upon seeing his relationship with his mother, Isha, I defy anyone who doesn’t at least shed one tear. Shot in shockingly close proximity to the animals, we see how they behave in a highly natural habitat, where they play and scrounge for food in a territory rich with fruit, nuts and figs, as well as hunt and fight (there are particularly terrifying scenes involving the gang and some tree-monkeys and then a devastating confrontation with the rival gang). Oscar’s inevitable relationship with his gang’s alpha male is, as we are told, a miracle and shows just how incredible these animals are.
This film is a welcome change to Disney’s usual releases, illustrating the vastness of the world and that chimpanzees, which are the closest species to our own, have much the same traits and behavioural patterns. Though Chimpanzee is enjoyable for all ages with an injection of frequent humour from Mr Buzz Light-year himself, it is more suited to younger children who will gaze in amazement as some funny looking monkeys wash themselves and trick each other in order to get into some very hard nuts. A must see and especially perfect as a delightful Sunday afternoon film.
Chimpanzee is released in cinemas today.]]>