I remember when this movie came out I had no interest in seeing it. Of particular interest in this film is the dialectic betweensociety and individuality, which has never been so visuallycompelling. I highly recommend the movie even though the movie makersmodified the book. Thefollowing scene when Ootek finds him and leaves him and he chases Ootekuntil he drops, and then Ootek saves him, gives him shelter, and leavesagain without a word, was just beautiful. Many great little touches - as a bassoonist, I particularly like the bassoon motif though it's not in the book, either. There is no better way to describe it.
Spirituality is a large factor in the life of the Inuit shown here, but they do not have the ability to appear and disappear at will, or to bend the space-time continuum. This is an extremely enjoyable movie. This film rails against the Disneyfication of the world in an artful and satisfying way that makes it all the more shocking that Disney studios bothered to release it at all. Mike travels with Ootek by canoe to see a herd of caribou that is attacked by a pack of wolves. Based on Farley Mowat's semi-autobiography of the same name, it tells about a man sent to uncover the reason behind the decline of caribou herds. This film captures the experience of a man virtually alone in the wild as few have.
Ootek helps him build a shelter and teaches him the basic survival skills that he needs. This film is the work of an artist. Also, there is careful avoidance of the old 'Magic Indian' cliché so common in films which depict native cultures. For this one, you have to turn off the phone, settle in, and let the film take you. Well, two, actually: Farley Mowat andCarroll Ballard. In addition the film is augmented by a brilliant and haunting musical score.
Here thecinematography and the beautiful musical score by Mark Isham are finecompensations. I very much enjoyed as an adult, and it is perfect for families. The depth of their specific acting talents if acting is took to mean acting unnaturally could be up for interpretation. This is, unapologetically, a cinematographer's movie. Unlike Ootek, who is content with the lifestyle of the Inuit, Mike is not. It's the subject of somescientific conjecture whether man would have survived his early predatorshad it not been for dogs, who warned of danger and probably even helped todefend us.
In one sense it is a master piece, one that will never receive mass appeal or recognition. With this one glaring example of meddling with the directors original vision on on the part of Disney studios, I agree with the previous commentator on how this film is atypical of a Disney film. He writes from a humorous standpoint, as concerned with the great fears and mysteries of life as he is with those things that mildly amuse him. Tyler initially suspects of Rosie but when he sees the nervous Mike, he finds that he killed the animals. But as I have read through numerous reviews, I find them missing a few elements that make this movie so wonderful.
Farley Mowat's writing is the core of Never Cry Wolf. The complexity of the characters and the situation causes some people tocommend the film for being what it is. The researcher Tyler Charles Martin Smith is assigned by his government to travel to the Arctic to study the wolves that they believe are responsible for the reduction of the caribou population. He builds a shelter for Tyler and organizes his supplies. The biggest problem that Tyler faces is his lack of survival skills.
It seems that his first night would be his last night; until a travelling Inuit discovers him. The government wants him toconform to and thereby justify its lies, but fortunately the carbonformsare blown away by the wind early. Insuch circumstances I am sure I would freeze to death. From place to place, you feel your eyes wander to the things you see around you. Its pace is the sticking point that will make it unpalatable to someviewers, but I give it a rarely-awarded 9 rating for its beauty, socialconscience and thorough enjoyability, taking away 1 point only for itssomewhat heavy-handed finale that is less palatable than Mowat's originalmessage.
And it is in those thoughts that we are given a window into Tyler's development. I thought those scenes were includednicely in the film. In a film with such truly beautiful cinematography, it would be nearly impossible to criticize any lack of judicial editing. The menu: mice with crackers, barbecued mice, mouse sandwiches. As the plane touches down Tyler is informed that he will be on his own and the pilot will come back to retrieve him. Still, eating a diet ofthe whole, uncooked mouse would be sustaining whereas a diet of leanmeat only would not.
In the end however, the message is far moresimple and it is tough to argue with. But without the direction of Carroll Ballard, I have doubts that Never Cry Wolf could have been such a pure success that it is. The reckless pilot Rosie Brian Dennehy takes him to the wilderness and he is left alone with his supply in an extremely cold spot. It succeeds on every level and really needs to apologize for nothing. One of those rare films that can easily be rewarding for adults andkids. That may be one of my all-time favorite movie quotes.
Where were the mosquitos and the biting flies that the tundra isinfamous for? Only god knows to what degree we have influenced eachother's evolution over the ages. Add blubber and internal organs for an all-meatdiet to work. This film is not a typical Disney movie; so much so that you wonder whythey did it. All characters have a different motive, andall are convinced of their own morality. This is a good autobiographical movie which raises interesting issues aboutthe preservation of wildlife and the necessary role of the wolf in theecosystem of the north. A high point forDisney -- no contest. I am surprised that Tyler did notdie in all that ice.