Jacques Perrin takes flight

“What if we understood that our borders did not exist, that the earth is a one and only space, and what if we learned to be free as birds?”

This question, posed by French director Jacques Perrin, encapsulates the essence of the spectacular, Oscar-nominated film Winged Migration.

The film follows over a dozen migrating birds from seven continents through their yearly fall and spring migrations, travelling thousands of miles across 40 countries.

Employing more than 450 people Perrin uses 14 cinematographers and 17 pilots, as well as air balloons, gliders, helicopters, ultra light aircraft and specially designed remote-controlled flying cameras to place the audience in full flight with these incredible birds. I suppose when you do not need to pay your actors your production money can go elsewhere.

Don’t like birds? Don’t like nature? Don’t like French directors? You don’t have to in order to enjoy this film–Winged Migration is worth seeing for the brilliant cinematography alone.

Travelling over famous landmarks with these beautiful creatures will keep you gasping at the inventiveness of the director in overcoming the challenge of filming birds in flight.

The extremely challenging cinematography aside, the story is a simple one of birds surviving in nature with very subtle but effective comments on environmental issues that are threatening the survival of many of these birds.

Although Perrin is definitely concerned with environmental issues, Winged Migration is more of an expression of Perrin’s wish to live in a world without borders–to live as free as the birds.

Winged Migration opens May 30 at the Globe Cinema.

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