Baby orangutans and elephants are awww, so cute, in Born to Be Wild 3D, an IMAX movie narrated by Morgan Freeman.
In Borneo, Dr. Birute Galdikas rescues adorable orphaned baby orangutans and raises them, as wild as she can, so they can one day return to their habitat in the jungle. In Kenya, Daphne Sheldrick rescues orphaned baby elephants — which, if this is possible, might actually be even more adorable than the orangutans — and raises them until she can one day return them to their dusty home. In both places, these tireless crusaders have helpers who care for these baby animals as though they were their own children, trying to keep them from becoming pets so they’ll still be able to adjust to the wild, and teaching them the skills they’ll need to survive. As with all recent nature movies of this type, the story ends with the animals returning to their respective habitats, the survival of which is Up To Us. And, just to drive home the world-saving gravity of the women’s work along with the adorableness of the movie’s animal subjects, Morgan Freeman offers a grandfatherly, voice-of-God narration.
Forty minutes is the perfect length for a movie like this. We get our cute baby animals, we get our lush wild spaces (even the Kenya with its rust-red grasslands seems lushly colored), we get our social message. While it might feel like a lot to pay close to $10 per ticket for a movie that doesn’t even crack an hour, Born to Be Wild 3D is the perfect length for itself, if not a great value. One of the problems with the proliferation of 3-D movies could be that movies like this get less of an audience, with people saving their money for bigger, longer 3-D or IMAX movies. That would be unfortunate, because this kind of movie is really when you want the big screen and the specialized, depth-providing 3-D effects. The movie really does look great, far better than many of the feature films that end up in 3-D. If you’re looking to save cash, do it on the animated movies, which are nearly as good in 2-D as in 3-D, and spend it here to get the best look possible at Borneo short of actually going there. B
Rated G. Directed by Davi Lickley and written by Drew Fellman, Born to Be Wild 3D is 40 minutes long and distributed to IMAX theaters by Warner Brothers.