Posted by tleemay on May 24, 2002 at 10:34:13:
Last Wednesday, I was invited to a VIP screening of a
new IMAX film that's currently about 70% completed.
It's produced by MacGillivray-Freeman and is shot by
Howard and Michele Hall. What I saw during those two
viewings were nothing less than astonishing.
"Coral Reef Adventure" was shot over a 10 month
period traveling from the Great Barrier Reef to Fiji to
Tahiti, and eventually ending in Rangiroa. They used
the 'Undersea Explorer' out of Australia for the base
of field operations. The goal of the expedition was to
document the reefs before it was too late. There has
been evidence that global warming, timber clearing,
over fishing, among other factors, has been suspected
as the primary cause of the declining health
of the great reefs of the Western Pacific.
The visuals are stunning. the film and hand work was
exact. Over a hundred miles of film were shot during
the 10 month project. Some of the experts who assisted
in the field were no crumble-bums (with perhaps one
exception). Names like Richie Pyle, Jean Michel
Cousteau, and Fijian naturalist Rusi Vulakora.
Michele getting her gold crowns cleaned by red banded
cleaner shrimp on the GBR and then allow a potato cod
to get 'friendly'. She's joined by a female
Australian marine biologist who's name escapes me.
Howard and Richie make a series of 350' trimix
rebreather dives on a wall in Fiji - Richie discovers
and collects 5 new un-documented ithiologic species.
Oh, and Richie's computer implodes, Howard loses
track of his O2 waypoints and takes a spinal hit...
he recovers after chamber treatment, then continues to
to deep dives lugging the massive IMAX camera and
housing after only days since treatment.
Also in Fiji, Jean Michel is shown educating the local
children on how important their reef system is -
including some great shots of the children snorkeling
with Jean Michele. It may not sound like much, but
the music and the looks on the kids? faces left a huge
impact on me.
Howard takes an ultra light ride in Tahiti to do a long
range search for schooling sharks. The aerials of this
particular sequence are dazzling as the criss-cross
the island from reef to reef in search of gray sharks.
There are many other sequences in between those
mentioned here that run from exciting to comedic, to
All the visuals were spectacular, especially compared
to other underwater IMAX films I have seen in years
past. This one is exceptional. The sound is dynamic
with music track being predominately from the
Had a nice discission with the Hall's and Mr.
MacGillivray after the second showing. Their
compassion for their project is great.
It's great stuff now ? will be better upon release
"You can't know if a species has gone extinct
if you didn't know it existed in the first
place" - Richie Pyle
"With over 7000 dives under my belt, I thought
I was too experienced to make this kind of
mistake. My legs were numb, but racing to the
surface would be suicide." - Howard Hall
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