Penguins Essay

Submitted By alecbodemer
Words: 799
Pages: 4

Alec Bodemer
Rebekah Pratt-Sturges
HUM 175 SEC 3374
6 March 2015
Writing Assignment #2: March of the Penguins Analysis The film March of the Penguins is a documentary film produced in 2005 that takes place in the coldest location on Earth, Antarctica. It is a French film produced by Warner Brothers Entertainment and the National Geographic Society and was directed by Luc Jacquet. March of the Penguins is an expository and observational documentary that follows the long migration of a large flock of penguins across the icy plains of Antarctica to their breeding grounds to mate with one another. The penguins encounter many hardships and challenges on their journey, but eventually arrive to give birth to their young. This is a very well-known film because of its many different elements of sound, cinematography, narration, and other features that make a documentary publically appealing. March of the Penguins is both an expository and observational documentary because of the methods that the producers used during the film. The reason it is an expository film is because it is rhetorical and speaks directly to the viewer. It is persuasive in the way that it makes the viewer sympathize with the penguins throughout their journey. The movie’s narrator, Morgan Freeman, plays a large role in why this film is expository. Freeman has a very deep and credible voice that most people can recognize when hearing it. His voice is very persuasive and believable when he is talking directly to the viewers of the film. March of the Penguins is also observational because of its little interference with the penguin flock as they traveled to their breeding ground. All scenes of this movie were shot from a distance, undoubtedly using a high zoom camera lens. It is not known whether the penguins knew of the presence of the film crews, or if they were oblivious to it. Throughout the film, the penguin flock appears undisturbed and in the natural hustle and bustle of its activities. It appears as though the penguins did not notice the film crew, but there is no way to know for sure. But in any case, the film was still observational. The penguins of March of the Penguins are anthropomorphized often and very blatantly to a viewer with the knowledge to see it. One example occurs at the very beginning of the film. Morgan Freeman is narrating about Antarctica’s near impossible living conditions and how penguins are the only species there that are able to make a migration of this nature. Freeman goes on to describe the penguins as a “tribe”. While he does this, a blurred shot shows a group of penguins walking across the ice. It is hard to tell if the black figures marching on the ice are in fact penguins or possibly a human tribe. This anthropomorphizes the penguins by portraying them as human-like in the way they move and exist as a group. I believe the producers wanted to bring out human qualities in the penguins because it makes it easier to relate to them and sympathize with them. This makes the viewer’s experience one that is more engaged and personally affected by what the