Director: Jessica Oreck
“It's as though Sofia Coppola had scrapped Lost in Translation midway through to focus instead on elephant beetles.” - Austin Chronicle
The ineffable mystery of Japan's age-old love affair with insects is put under the microscope in Beetle Queen, which sees filmmaker Jessica Oreck - a lifelong insect lover, and an animal keeper at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City - chart the history of Japan's entomological obsession with a lyrical precision.
The result is a fascinating exploration of a culture steeped in bizarre enthusiasms, exploring everything from insect-dispensing vending machines and professional beetle hunters to the upmarket insect shops where a single purchase could set you back $90,000.
“Burrows into Japan's historic fascination with insects… and what's remarkable about this quietly spellbinding documentary is that it gets the viewer to share in that fascination.” - Variety
USA/UK/France, 2009 USA, 1974 Netherlands, 1962 Armenia/Netherlands, 2009
“Monumental. An anthropological work of art.” - Cinema Scope ... A giant bleating flock of three thousand sheep take to the big mountains - and the big screen - in a documentary unlike anything y… More »
“It is essentially about one set of primates who have power, using it against another who haven't.” - Guardian ... Prolific documentary filmmaker Frederick Wiseman (whose La Danse is also screeni… More »
A 1962 short from Bert Haanstra made from footage he secretly shot of people visiting Amsterdam's Artis Zoo. ... More »
The burden of humanity is placed on the shoulders and into the very being of one of God's forgotten creatures in Bresson's masterpiece, the ultimate animal film. ... Baptised by three children and ch… More »