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Microcosmos Takes Us Into a World of Stunning Beauty
by Gary Johnson

Go to:
the Miramax Web site for Microcosmos

Microcosmos is one of the most startling movies ever made and its stars are the very creatures that we typically take for granted every day--mosquitoes, ants, dung beetles, snails, water spiders, and many others. Filmed in amazingly clear close-ups, Microcosmos takes us directly into the world of bugs with specially designed equipment that provides images unlike any you've ever seen before. These aren't the typically blurry, narrow field-of-focus shots that you've seen in past documentaries.

Two burgundy snails locked in a lovers' clinch.

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In Microcosmos, bugs tower over the camera like dinosaurs, teetering and lumbering into view like extras from the cast of Jurassic Park, giving us a peek into a world that we could scarcely imagine before, where ants drink like cattle from a pool of water and drops of rain explode like rounds of mortar fire, where a simple field of grass becomes a huge forest.

Microcosmos is the labor of love of Claude Nuridsany and Marie Perennou, involving 15 years of research, 2 years of designing equipment (cameras, lights, etc.), 3 years of shooting and 6 months of editing. And the results are easily some of the most extraordinary images ever put on film.

Ants drinking from a puddle.

(©1996 Miramax Films. All Rights Reserved.)

We see in startlingly clear close-ups a bewildering array of images. We see bees greedily licking up nectar; snails, like lovers, grasping one another and undulating on a green carpet of moss; wasp pupae, like tiny walruses, flopping inside a hive; a dung beetle busily rolling a dung ball until the ball becomes impaled on a thorn; a pheasant eating ants, their broken bodies tumbling from its mouth and lying on the ground like casualties on a battlefield; a spider dragging air bubbles underwater to form a diving bell-like dining room; two horned beetles clashing like gladiators; an ant drinking from a dew drop on a leaf; an army of caterpillars moving in single file; a mosquito slowly rising from the water and spreading its wings like a goddess in an Arthurian legend.

provides startling close-ups.

(©1996 Miramax Films. All Rights Reserved.)

Microcosmos contains little narration. The emphasis is upon the images themselves, which are presented in short vignettes of one bug and then the next. So don't go to Microcosmos expecting to be led through the scenes by a kindly narrator who provides you with all the inside dope. And don't expect to find a story. Instead, Microcosmos is a showcase of images that allows us a privileged glimpse inside a world that is elusive and mysterious--and a world of extraordinary beauty.

A Miramax Films Release
DirectionClaude Nuridsany
Marie Perennou
CameraClaude Nuridsany
Marie Perennou
Hughes Ryffel
Thierry Machado
EditorMarie-Josephe Yoyotte
Florence Ricard
SoundPhilippe Barbeau
Bernard Leroux
Original MusicBruno Coulais
ProducerGalatee Films
Jacques Perrin
Christophe Barratier
Yvette Mallet
Voice-Over NarrationKristin Scott Thomas
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