Monday, September 04, 2006

That was a freebie.

I was literally just saying to a friend last week that I wanted to write something on the blog about Grizzly Man, but I wasn't sure where to start. However in light of recent Guys Who Get What's Coming To Them news, it seems suddenly appropriate. If you think Steve Irwin "wasn't playing with a full deck" than let me tell you; in comparison, Timothy Treadwell was maybe working with a hand or two of "Go Fish."

Before seeing this movie, I assumed I was going to be dealing with some pumped up Jack Hannah type who, ultimately (SPOILER!!!) gets eaten by a bear. I mean, that in itself is a fabulous sounding premise, am I wrong? Instead, and I cannot stress enough, this is a film about a completely insane person who gets eaten by a bear. Timothy Treadwell had no ecological or biological training of any kind. This is a story of an out of work, alcoholic, drug addicted actor who decides to clean his act up, move to Alaska and go screw around with some bears. Why not? Seems like the next most logical step.

Lucky for us Timothy Treadwell was among other things, a raging narcissist, so he videotaped all of his Alaskan adventures complete with crazed ramblings. Highlights include: Timothy baby talking to the bears and giving the bears cutesy names. And yes let me remind you, bears are enormous killing machines. Timothy also goes off occasionally on deluded and expletive filled rants about the park service, (whom he thought were out to get him) for expecting him to abide by the rules that are put in place so you don't get eaten by a bear.

At the time of Treadwell's appropriate and timely death, he had been filming. (But hadn't yet managed to take the lens cap off.) So there is actually audio footage of him and his girlfriend, Amie Huguenard, being eaten alive by the bear. German Director, Werner Herzog takes one for the team and listens to the audio. He then tells Treadwell's ex-girlfriend and close friend, "Oh Jewell. Zoo must deestroy thizz tape. Zoo muzt neeever listen to thizz." But I gotta say, the bloodlust in me was pretty disappointed. The whole time here I'm thinking "YES!!! There's audio!! Will we get to hear it?!" Sadly, no.

Probably my favorite part of the movie though, was when Treadwell strokes and babbles over a pile of the bear shit he would ultimately become. The following is an actual quote from that scene: "Oh my gosh! The bear, Miss Chocolate, has left me her poop! It's her crap! It was just in her butt and it's still warm! This is a gift from Miss Chocolate!

Conclusion: Tempted yet? See the movie! I rate it 4 out of 4 bear droppings.


Chris said...

Yep, Grizzly Man is fantastic. I love Herzog's eccentric-but-responsible style of documentary filmmaking. The line between his docs and his fiction films often tends to blur, and vice versa. Also, after seeing this clip of Steve Irwin I'm convinced he and Treadwell are somewhere crying on each others' shoulders right now:

Chris said...

OK, "responsible" was a poor choice of word for an adventurist like Herzog. I mean he's able to push his docs into ficitional territory without obscuring the essential truth.

litelysalted said...

I just sent that clip out to 100 or so of my closest friends, toot sweet.