DFWChild / Articles / Family Life / Baby + Toddler / OCEANS


Reel Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Reels
MPAA Rating: G
Released in Theaters: April 22, 2010
Genre: Documentary, Nature
Runtime: 86 minutes
Directed by: Jacques Perrin
Cast: Pierce Brosnan (narrator)

Synopsis: A documentary about the sea life under the ocean, filmed at various parts of the globe.  

Sex/Nudity: None.

Violence/Gore: No blood, but we see some of the ocean creatures feasting on their neighbors: Orcas eat baby sea lions, sea gulls pluck baby sea turtles off the shore, prawns break crabs in two.

Profanity: None. 

Which Kids Will Like It? Kids 6 and older who like nature films or ocean life. 

Will Parents Like It?  It’s educational and beautiful, and teaches kids that the ocean needs to be respected and cared for.

Review: In the tradition of Disney’s time-honored nature films, some of which used to air on TV on Sunday nights, director Jacques Perrin takes us on an underwater journey through oceans throughout the world. The colors and photography are absolutely stunning, and you’ll be wondering how the heck they got some of these shots (stay through the end credits, and you’ll get a glimpse at the divers with their underwater cameras and equipment; I’m sure we’ll get more of it on the DVD).

As you might expect, included is the sea life with which most of us are familiar – Orca whales, sharks, sea lions, penguins, sea turtles and various fish. It’s like ‘Finding Nemo’ in real life! But we also see creatures that look like they’re from another planet – a sea dragon that really does look like a dragon, a massively long eel, and a “Spanish Dancer” that indeed looks like a Flamenco dancer with her colorful skirts.

The film also has an ecological message (it’s released on Earth Day, after all) that goes into how humans are endangering the ocean with pollution and trash. They don’t really get to that until the last 15 minutes of the film, so they’re not knocking us over the head with it.

My 12-year-old daughter and her friend thought the photography was beautiful, but they got a little bored about half-way in – maybe because while Pierce Brosnan is an admirable narrator, he sounded like he was half-asleep through part of the film. On the other hand, the younger kids who were sitting around us – in the 5 to 8 age range – seemed enthralled. So maybe it’s better for younger kids, especially those who’ve seen Finding Nemo and can now take a look at the real thing.

There are definitely some perils involved, and some kids might find the shots of Orcas eating sea lions and seagulls picking baby turtles off the sandy shore a little upsetting. But the film doesn’t spend a lot of time on these shots. Overall, Oceans is a gorgeous film with stunning photography and a message that we need to respect and care for our precious oceans.

Jane Boursaw is a family entertainment writer specializing in movies and TV. Visit her at Reel Life With Jane; follow her on Twitter; become a friend on Facebook; email jboursaw@charter.net.