Love in the Animal Kingdom (DVD)

Does love ever enter into the equation?

The thesis behind Love in the Animal Kingdom is whether or not love, as we humans define it, ever is a factor in the pairings found within the animal kingdom. The problem is this program presents the question and then proceeds to forget it is supposed to be providing an answer, waiting until the wrap up to mention the idea of love again.

Instead, the show is more about the mating rituals various species go through, dealing with ideas such as: Which gender initiates coupling? What about infidelity? How long do mated pairs stay together if indeed they do at all? Love in the Animal Kingdom zips in and out of our viewings of the various species, never spending more than about six minutes per segment. And that works in the show’s favor as it helps distract from the lack of a connection between question and answer.

But in truth, though I feel like the central idea got away from the program, I do enjoy the show. It’s full of really interesting facts and the kind of access the photographers are showcasing within is marvelous. The visuals sell the story. I just wish they had called this something more in line with the true nature of the program.

Love in the Animal Kingdom is presented in the standard 1.78:1 aspect ratio and it’s served well by the choice as the aerial photography in particular is shown to its best effect here. The palette is natural and the picture is crisp with minimal retouching done so as to present the subjects as close to how they appear in nature as possible. The audio is a mild-mannered Dolby Digital 2.0 but it’s perfectly serviceable for a documentary like this even if the track sounds a bit flat at times.

There are no bonus features.

Love in the Animal Kingdom certainly lives up to the promise of being an educational documentary. While it may miss the mark a bit with the central premise it does offer a unique perspective on the animal world. Unless it’s streaming your best bet is a purchase and you can feel good about it knowing it will benefit PBS.


Not guilty.

Here are the top ten things we know: 1) She lives in Ohio 2) She is MWOC unless you count her two dogs 3) Believes Avatar was NOT the greatest movie ever made 4) Operates on a primarily nocturnal basis 5) Wants to write the screenplay for the movie adaptation of C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia: The Last Battle 6) Watches a variety of shows on television including, but not limited to: Castle, @midnight, Face Off, Sherlock and Whose Line is it Anyway? 7) Does not believe anyone will actually read this besides the editor (hello, Editor!) 8) Has attended more than one N*SYNC concert in her lifetime but only one NKOTB concert 9) Was in a car crash that would have killed her had she not been wearing her seat belt 10) Is in the process of catching up on Supernatural (incidentally would possibly leave her husband for either of the Winchester Brothers depending on the episode in question) and the bonus! 11) Enjoys reading, writing, laying on the beach (long walks tire her out) and assorted snack foods like frozen M&M's.
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