Grizzly Man

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +1 1/2

Content: -3

Grizzly Man is a documentary about conservationist Timothy Treadwell. For 13 summers, Treadwell filmed his expeditions in the Alaskan wilderness as he lived among the grizzly bears. As their self-proclaimed protector, he learned to mimic the bears and believed that he had developed friendships with the animals. For Treadwell, the bears' world was an ideal, naturalistic form of existence in contrast to the destructive, selfish and uncaring world of humanity. While he was blinded by a romantic view of nature, he was often dismayed and angered by its harsh realities. In his fondness of the wilderness and the bears, he tempted fate by living dangerously close to huge, hungry predators. One summer, tragedy struck. Both Treadwell and his companion, Amie Huguenard, were attacked and eaten by bears. Against the gruesome backdrop of death, the story of Treadwell's confused life emerges in sharp relief.

For much of Grizzly Man, viewers are subjected to Timothy Treadwell's wild ramblings. In the best case, these scenes provide insight into his behaviors and motivations. But in the worst, they degrade into a flurry of angry mockery and cursing, directed even toward the gods of various world religions. The narrator's commentary - the film's best feature - exposes Treadwell's paranoid battle against poachers who were virtually nonexistent and shows how the reality of his life was far from his idealized view. In the end, Treadwell's story and the narrator's commentary convey the hopelessness that results from a godless worldview. While Treadwell expected to find perfection in unredeemed nature, the narrator rejects perfection altogether. Neither man recognizes Christ as the perfect redeemer of corrupted humanity and nature. For foul language, including about 40 f-words and sexual monologue, and an ambiguous message, Preview recommends that viewers avoid Grizzly Man.

Preview Reviewer: Shaun Daugherty
Lions Gate

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Once – strong (-ss 1)

Obscene Language: Many (55+) times – moderate (p-ss 1, cr-p 2, scr-w 3, other 6); strong (f-word 39+, s-word 4)

Profanity: Several (6) times – moderate (OG 1, OL 1); strong (GD 2, J 1, C 1)

Violence: Few times – mild (natural violence, bears shown fighting with each other, man stands his ground with a bear); strong (images of bear body parts and innards)

Sex: None

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times – moderate (discussion of a man’s relationship with various women, man talks about his attractiveness to women and his ability in bed); strong (man claims that it would be easier for him to be a homosexual because he could have sex without commitment, reference to having sex in a public facility, gesture reference to self-gratification)

Drugs: None

Other: A few appropriate uses of “God” when Treadwell says things like, “If there is a God, then …”; discussion of alcohol and drug abuse; narration and discussion of Treadwell’s brutal death, but no images or audio of the death are shown; some political discussion regarding environmentalism/conservationism

Running Time: 100 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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