Oceans Review: Joy to the Fishes in the Deep Blue Sea

You know those movies that have great special effects that everyone raves about and you’re told that you must see. Well, Oceans is one of those movies but for a special and unique reason—its REAL! Oceans takes you on an adventure under the sea where you witness beautiful and mysterious creatures that inhabit our oceans. You are in the center of the action swimming with dolphins, whales and sharks, playing with otters, relaxing with sea lions or marching along with some crabs. Oceans is a “joy to you and me” that I highly recommend!

As we learn on Disney’s Oceans’ website, “nearly three quarters of earth’s surface is covered in water” and in the film we witness “never before seen imagery captured by the latest underwater technologies.” Directors Jacques Perrin and Jacques Cluzaud filmed for four years to get enough footage to create Oceans. It makes sense—you can’t certainly yell cut and coach a whale into jumping higher out of the water, you simply have to wait for it to happen. This adds to the uniqueness of the film and I applaud them for creating this unbelievable natural masterpiece!

The film begins with a young boy posing a question, “what is the ocean?” Pierce Brosnan, the narrator, replies that, “the answer isn’t in a book. You must see it for yourself. Hear it. Taste it. Feel its power. Live it.” Oceans accomplishes these things for its viewers as it travels across and within our world’s five different oceans through the viewpoint of the animals.

You feel like you are actually swimming with the ocean creatures. Plus, the film has plenty of tender scenes like a mother walrus holding its young baby or a mother seal coaxing its baby into the water for its first swim. However, Oceans also portrays some harsh realities that these sea animals are facing—pollution, global warming, fishing nets (some heart-wrenching scenes of animals caught), the food chain (parents beware there are a few scenes of sharks and orcas going after and catching sea lions) and what the movie lists as the most important—human indifference.

Oceans was a captivating film—its run-time is listed as 1 hr and 43 minutes and I was actually surprised how quickly time flew by while watching. I found the amount of narration to be perfect—it wasn’t too much which allowed you to completely focus on whatever animal was on the screen.

The film footage in Oceans is spectacular. There were so many moments throughout when I thought, “Wow, how did they manage to film this?” I was also impressed that they were able to capture the numerous animals in their natural habitats without disturbing them. Besides the superb graphics, the sound quality of the ocean and the animals was astounding.

The movie was not only visually attractive but informative…I learned many interesting facts about the ocean and its animals. Who knew that humpback whales sleep upside down; only 1 in 1000 baby sea turtles make it from the beach into the ocean after hatching; or that beluga whales each have their own individual sounds.

Oceans is a fantastic film for all ages (little kids in the theater were really into it especially when they saw Nemo a.k.a. the clown fish). Released on Earth Day, Oceans also proves to be a gentle reminder of our responsibility to help maintain the ocean for these many magnificent animals.

As a final note, don’t rush out when the credits begin to roll, stay and watch some behind the scenes footage of those who for four years practically lived in the ocean beside these animals to capture the amazing footage.

Photos: Galatee Films – Pathe Production – Notro Films – France 2 Cinema -France 3 Cinema – JMH/TSR.

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