Film overview / ‘La Panthère des Neiges’

The uncommon snow leopard within the mountains of east Tibet.

“La Panthère des Neiges” (The Velvet Queen) (G) ****

FRENCH wildlife photographer Vincent Munier desires to {photograph} the uncommon snow leopard within the mountains of east Tibet. 

This lovely animal continues to elude him. Along with author buddy Sylvain Tesson, Munier searches for the prized animal at elevations of 4500 metres amongst peaks reaching 6000 metres. 

Marie Amiguet joins Munier in writing and directing this visually superior, philosophically wealthy, consideration of the ability of the pure world and the authority that the actually wild surroundings workout routines.

Few filmmakers have ventured into that breathtaking, demanding, scary and, in its distinctive manner, lovely surroundings. 

In 2020, Frederic Larrey made “The Frozen Kingdom of the Snow Leopard”, a 52-minute documentary displaying highlights of a full yr in a snow leopard’s territory. 

The movie made in 2021 by Amiguet and Munier is 40 minutes longer than that. Its tempo is gradual, nearly soporific. In a number of the world’s bleakest, hard-to-get-at terrain, it goes amongst all method of residing creatures whereas saving the perfect for final. The snow leopard is the apex predator of the area. Different animals are there to offer it with sustenance – or so it could appear. And people animals make “The Velvet Queen” attention-grabbing.

Whereas Munier scans the panorama for proof of a snow leopard, Tesson considers what’s driving his buddy’s pursuit. Voiceover ponders the connection between people and nature. “The Velvet Queen” invitations filmgoers to come across different animals that inhabit that sere, bleak surroundings, massive and small, carnivores, herbivores, yaks, antelopes, asses or shaggy Pallas’ cat.

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The movie’s French title says all that it must say. Its Anglicised title is a bit enigmatic. The snow leopard pictures, after they seem, present an evidence that you just wouldn’t wish to take a look at by making an attempt to stroke one.

At Dendy

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Ian Meikle, editor