This one’s a Must-See!

Battle of the beetles.

Whimsical; mightily fascinating

I’m sure some people wonder sometimes what it looks like when very small creatures such as snails mate. That is one of the many bug-related questions this incredible documentary answers.

I don’t care how good CGI is becoming; it will never be real. Unlike the bugs in Antz, the ones we see in the astonishing French film Microcosmos are very real and their lives are shown to us in amazing close-up – and I do mean amazing. Seeing a movie that observs the insect kingdom so very closely and in such great detail is not exactly something one gets to do very often; I am happy I got around to watching it.

Bugs of many sorts appear in Microcosmos – ones that crawl, fly, typically come out by night, live in the woods, live near water and even ones that like it under water. We’re shown how some of them mate, fights between some of them, how some of them work and so much more. An especially memorable scene is the one that shows two snails have sex. I use the term “have sex” because of how romantic the music and cinematography make the scene feel – who would have thought a sex scene involving small slimy creatures would be so lovely?

There is a very cool scene that show a group of ants devouring much smaller bugs on some sort of twig. A ladybug comes along and one ant proceeds to fight it, hitting it until it falls of the twig – a thud is heard as it plummets off screen. I like the use of sound effects in this film; presumably this is what bugs hear, if they hear sounds the way we do at all. I have little knowledge of this creatures, as you see.

Snails  making love.

Another gallant fight takes place towards the end, involving two angry stag-beetles, this time with somewhat louder sound effects as this is clearly a bigger and more serious battle. Believe it or not, watching two beetles fight, especially this closely, is actually rather spectacular. As they fight, they actually manage to accidentaly wake up an innocent isopod, who walks away, seeming a bit annoyed. I found that kind of amusing.

Yet another incredible scene is one that is filmed under water, showing us the small creatures that enjoy themselves down there, as well as some that bounce on the surface. But I’m not going to talk about every scene in the film – instead, let me advice you to check this film out!

The documentary has almost no voice-over. There is one early in the film, but that’s it. Though this doesn’t really require a voice that tells us how all the creatures function, how they eat and how they reproduce. It is simply a journey into the world we humans step on and sometimes attack witha magnifying glass; it is a film that shows what goes on down there and what the inhabitants go through on a daily basis. It is immensely fascinating to watch. The music is also wonderful.

Microcosmos is sometimes whimsy, sometimes a tad scary, sometimes sad and at all times captivating and beautiful. It is a unique, stunning and whimsical film that might actually get some people to think before mercilessly squeezing a defenseless insect. One thing is for certain: it will make you feel big, perhaps like a God?

I think most people should see this film and hopefully be impressed by what it has to show. Me, I whistled in amazement several times.

5/5 whatever