With the anniversary of “Jaws,” Stephen Scarlata’s documentary comes at the right time, as sharksploitation has managed to experience something of a resurgence. Along with “The Meg 2” coming to theaters, we’ve also had fodder like “The Black Demon,” “The Devil’s Mouth,” “Deep Water,” and “Cocaine Shark.” So “Sharksploitation” is something of an overdue account of the creation of sharksploitation movies, and how one movie named “Jaws” created what would become a fascinating, often infamous sub-genre of action and horror movies that’s spanned decades.
BOOTLEG FILES 756: “The Baboons of Gombe” (1974 documentary by Jane Goodall).
LAST SEEN: On YouTube.
AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: On a 1978 laserdisc release.
REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: Unavailable for many years.
CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: It is not likely.
I have a Facebook friend named John Rosa who posts New York-area TV Guide listings from the 1960s and 1970s, and today he shared the selection of programming that was available on February 1, 1974. Over on ABC at 8:00 p.m. was a one-shot special called “The Baboons of Gombe” that featured animal behaviorist Jane Goodall studying a troop of 40 baboons that lived along the shore of Lake Tanganyika.
If you’d like to submit your short film for review consideration, submissions are always opened to filmmakers and producers.
I’ve constantly heard “Grizzly Man” in contrast with a train wreck. It’s miserable, but you just have to keep watching for some odd reason, and that’s a dead on summarizing of this film. It’s a train wreck, but a compelling one. Director Werner Herzog explores wildlife enthusiast Timothy Treadwell through much footage of his exploration of woods and commuting with his favorite animals, the bears. All of the clips are morbid reflections of a man content with his surroundings and desperately attempting to unify with nature. The film is morbid because it explores tapes from Treadwell leading up to his inevitable death (Tim’s friend even recalls when he discovered the mangled bodies, or what was left of them). He and his girlfriend were mauled to death and eaten by the same grizzlies he’d grown to love, and though Herzog doesn’t show the deaths, it’s still compelling to watch this man implode.
What Andy Goldsworthy does is pure magic that can be deemed as truly amazing, or just a truly amazing use of proficiency. Goldsworthy masters his craft within an instance going out in to a natural terrain and instantly begins looking for objects to make up his next masterpiece. Goldsworthy takes what he’s given from nature, and in an obviously edited nature begins making a design. Scottish born artist Goldsworthy speaks with a gentle voice very often as all artists do knowing any little tremor will break down the masterpiece, and though he be slightly eccentric, mad, and demanding, he does manage to surprise with visions of nature that really made me gasp and smile with wonder at the beauty presented to us in stark luminous colors and shades.
Though heavily staged, “Winged Migration” gives us a rare and never before seen glimpse into nature and the life cycle and migratory patterns of birds seeking shelter and struggling to survive amidst the common enemy known as Man. Done in a period of four years, “Winged Migration” features a team of incredibly gifted and brilliant Cinematographers that so eloquently capture the essence of the landscapes presented within the hunting and scavenging of these incredible species that it becomes such a thrill to watch.