Thursday, 26 April 2012

African Cats ★★★☆☆

Disneynature's latest film African Cats (2011) attempts to capture the magic and wonder which made March of the Penguins (2005) such a resounding success. Narrated by Sir Patrick Stewart (previously Samuel Jackson for the US release - it still remains unknown as to whether this switch was to make the film more palatable to a UK audience or because of how critically panned Jackson's original recitation was) African Cats combines cutting edge wildlife documentary techniques with a dramatic storyline that’s quintessentially Disney.

Focusing on two species coexisting in the Masai Mara National Reserve in Kenya, African Catsfollows the stories of two feuding lion tribes and a cheetah attempting to raise her cubs in this unforgiving terrain. The lions are locked in a territorial war, with two arch nemeses (Fang, an elderly protector of a close knit pride and the unfortunately named Kali - the film's malevolent villain) both intent on laying claim to the reserves numerous lionesses. Our single mother cheetah is named Sita and her story is perhaps the most engaging - trying her hardest to protect, feed and teach her five rambunctious cubs from the perilous wildness and its assortment of vicious predators.


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