Preserving Nature in IMAX: America Wild National Parks Adventure

5 May

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By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

For the nearest screening near you, please check local listings.

MacGillivray Freeman’s America Wild National Parks Adventure truly spotlights the beauty that Mother Earth has hidden away. When Theodore Roosevelt came to discover the majesty existing in certain areas of America instead of remote corners and became an advocate to create a system of national parks, perhaps a small detail was glossed over quicker than catching a prairie dog peeking out to wonder why mountaineer Conrad Anker, adventure photographer Max Lowe and artist Rachel Pohl are intent on capturing them on their respective medium for prosperity.

Yellowstone was the first national park created to preserve the beauty that exists on this planet. President Ulysses S. Grant signed the bill, and more time could have been spent to reinforce the importance of how money needs to be set aside to protect and manage these parks back in the day. It took time for that to develop to what it presently is.

While some documentaries are not developed to have a plot worthy of a true crimes novel, others are there to celebrate just one aspect instead of revealing the plight most are facing. National Geographic published an article talking about issues plaguing parks today. As beautiful and popular Yellowstone is, overcrowding is still an issue. Some conservationists are concerned about mountaineers “defacing” monuments with their extreme sports stunts. It’s been mentioned in other documentaries, namely Sunshine Superman, though to squeeze on all the concerns into a 45-minute documentary may not be possible.

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As an IMAX 3D film, this product is visually spectacular. The cinematography is top notch and the angles used gives fantastic depth to landscapes presented. Audiences could reach out to feel the cables being stretched out towards them or grab one of the icicles. Not everyone can visit some of these locations hidden away in Glacier National Park in their lifetime. Not everyone can be like the Anker family, spending an entire season on a massive road trip to visit places like Yosemite, Niagra Falls, Bryce Canon and Devils Tower (made famous in Close Encounters of the 3rd Kind). Between using drones and helicopter fly-bys with 4K cameras, the crispness of the image shines on a laser projection system.

Despite not raising awareness of what some parks face, if you can’t visit there yourself, this film is the next best thing before climate change adversely affects various ecosystems. Outside of the protected lands lurks a sad reality. Uranium prospecting allegedly takes places at the edge of the Grand Canyon, and sugar producers have long since polluted and disrupted the delicate water system of the Everglades. These facts are not that widely known, and to make people aware of the situation is better than just presenting the beauty contained in these parks. All around the world, some natural wonders are being endangered.

3½ Stars out of 5

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