Microcosmos | EW.com

Movies

Microcosmos At the beginning of Microcosmos, the camera swoops over the countryside and burrows down into the grass (a deliberate echo of MicrocosmosDocumentaryPT80MG At the beginning of Microcosmos, the camera swoops over the countryside and burrows down into the grass (a deliberate echo of 1996-10-25
A-

Microcosmos

Genre: Documentary; Director: Claude Nuridsany, Marie Perennou; Author: Claude Nuridsany, Marie Perennou; Runtime (in minutes): 80; MPAA Rating: G

At the beginning of Microcosmos, the camera swoops over the countryside and burrows down into the grass (a deliberate echo of Blue Velvet). For the next 75 minutes, this French documentary offers a miraculous you-are-there close-up of the insect kingdom, a world of such teeming beauty and sophistication it suggests a sci-fi zooscape designed by Dr. Seuss. An ant lifts a drop of water and drinks from it as if it were a giant, liquid crystal ball; two beetles lock their spiky red horns as purposefully as a pair of battling caribou; a pair of snails engage in an ”embrace” so moist and tender they could and recording devices that capture the sights and scritch-scratch sounds of insects and other invertabrates as they eat, fight, mate, and — eternally — work, the movie has been edited with a glancing, meditative flow that evokes both the casual violence and eerie quietude of this primeval jungle in miniature. The revelation of Microcosmos isn’t just that the insect world has a complex and stirring order — it’s how close these bugs come to having minds. A-

Originally posted October 25 1996 — 12:00 AM EDT

More from Our Partners