- 7/4/2015 12:00:00 AM by MarcusBritish
In 1990, the BBC aired "Trials of Life", a 12-part natural historyseries exploring animal behaviour, showing a variety of species fromthe moment of their birth through to adulthood and becoming a parentthemselves.
This 6-part series, "Life Story", follows a very similar theme,covering the stages of life and the challenges that await them in theanimal world. Like many of David Attenborough's latest documentaries,this series adopts the same format of showing a 50-minute episodefollowed by a 10-minute "Diaries" which follows the camera crew as theytry to capture the behaviour of one of the animals which featured inthe series. They make you appreciate some of the hardships the crewoften go through to get the best results.
Where "Trials of Life" was a 4:3 production, "Life Story" is fully-HDdue to being filmed with 4K cameras, and includes some beautiful camerawork with extraordinarily detailed close-ups, as well as fantasticshots of insects and other microcosmic species. These people reallymake an effort to capture memorable events and David's narration is aseloquent as ever, both educational and witty, to suit the on-screenaction.
Like most nature programmes, "Life Story" includes some mildlydisturbing scenes of animal behaviour, but this is how those specieshave evolved in order to survive in harsh environments. You have totake the bad with the good and accept that nature can be cruel.Witnessing these animals face such challenges and learning to adapt andovercome them is the true reward. Where many endure, few survive.
- 7/4/2015 12:00:00 AM by Ashok Mohanty
I have watched each and every documentary which are graced by hisgreatness, Sir David. And the quality curve just ascends inunbelievable manner as you progress your way through the series made bySir David. The jump in quality gets lengthier and even more lengthieras compared with the last series you watched. And LIFE STORY is againanother bagful of fresh miracles in Mr. Nature's effervescent voice. Asalways, it challenges you in picking your favourite moment from thewhole series. Each story is filled with minutes drama and wonders whereeach minute is a story itself.
It makes me really sad as I am from India where I cannot claim a copyof the elusive and luscious poster of the series. Life feels wonderfulwhen we add meaning to it. I am proud of my life as I happen to havediscovered the true story of my life, which is Sir David!!!
- Beautiful Documentary 12/10/2014 12:00:00 AM by dulooo
Quality of Life Story is AMAZING. Such a details, colors, close ups. Some of the scenes really takes your breath away. It's 6 episodes thru out different continents and climates. I watched a lot of documentaries about animals and i have to say that this one is in top3 of all time for me. It shows life of different animals from birth to adult life. It shows dangers that those animals encounters and how cruel nature can be, but also how gracious it is. You can see such an extraordinary behaviors of some of the animals, that you can't find anywhere else. It's story about love, survival, youth and transition to adulthood. It's really MUST SEE!
- An utterly exquisite life story 10/24/2017 12:00:00 AM by TheLittleSongbird
David Attenborough is nothing short of a national treasure. He may apparently dislike the term, but it is hard to not say that about such a great presenter who has contributed significantly to some of the best programmes (of the documentary genre and overall) the BBC has ever aired/produced.
It is really hard picking favourites, let alone a definite favourite, among what Attenborough has done because he has done so many gems, it is the equivalent of trying to choose your favourite ice cream flavour or your favourite operatic role (for examples) and finding you can't pick. To me though, 'Life Story' is up there with his crowning achievements and one of the best documentaries ever viewed, and as has been said already there are a lot of great ones. It has everything that makes so much of his work so wonderful, hence some of the reiteration of my recent reviews for some of his work (being on a nature documentary binge in my spare time), and deserves everything great that has been said about it.
First and foremost, 'Life Story' looks amazing. It is gorgeously filmed, done in a completely fluid and natural, sometimes intimate (a great way of connecting even more with the animals), way and never looking static. In fact much of it is remarkably cinematic with some of the shots being unique for a documentary series, making one forget that it is a series. The editing is always succinct and smooth and the scenery is pure magic, similarly really admired the wide-ranging diversity of the different landscapes rather than restricting it to just one habitat. The music score fits very well, never overly grandiose while never being inappropriate.
Again, like so many Attenborough nature/wildlife documentaries, 'Life Story' fascinates, teaches, moves, entertains and transfixes. In terms of the facts there was a very good mix of the known ones and the unknown, some facts being familiar to us while going into detail about the different animals and the various stages in their life and the challenges they face in their first steps, growing up, home, power, courtship and parenthood. with a lot of Attenborough, found myself learning a lot despite not being a slouch when it comes to some of the knowledge.
Narration by Attenborough helps significantly. He clearly knows his stuff and knows what to say and how to say it. He delivers it with his usual richness, soft-spoken enthusiasm and sincerity, never talking down to the viewer and keeping them riveted and wanting to know more. The "behind the scenes/making of" scenes too gave some humanity to the series and allowed us to get to know those behind the camera as well as in front.
The animals are big in personality and very diverse. The conflict has genuine tension and suspense, there is some fun and a lot of emotionally powerful moments done with a lot of tear-jerking pathos. Found myself really caring for what we're told. Like much of Attenborough/BBC's other work, each episode doesn't feel like an episodic stringing of scenes, but instead like the best nature documentaries each feels like their own story and journey, with real, complex emotions and conflicts and animal characters developed in a way a human character would in a film but does it better than several.
In conclusion, utterly exquisite in every way. 10/10 Bethany Cox