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The Grizzly Man a Critique of the Documentary by Werner Herzog

Grizzly Man – A Passionate Journey

Who would like to live with a mammal that is about 8 feet tall and weighs 800 pounds? The incredible documentary film Grizzly Man, released in 2005 and directed by Werner Herzog, is the truthful videotapes of Timothy Treadwell who spent his lifetime to live, protect, and study the grizzly bears in Alaska. It lets the audiences follow Treadwell’s fearless adventure into the dangerous territory of the grizzly bears. On the other hand, the emotional interviews of Treadwell’s family and friends talk about his personality, his stories, and his work after his death because of the bear attack. Not only does Grizzly Man follow the passionate journey of Timothy Treadwell that takes people to the fascinating nature in Alaska through Treadwell’s camera skills, but also impresses the viewers’ feeling with the heartbreaking interviews, and calls people to protect the grizzly bears instead of harming.

With outstanding thoughts and professional cinematography skills, Timothy Treadwell makes the film like his personal diary when he lives with animals in the amazing forest, so the audience can see how beautiful the nature is. Thirteen summers in Katmai National Park and Preserve, Alaska, Treadwell treated the grizzly bears as his family and his friends, and he captured every moments of him and the bears. His affection about them was expressed along the movie even though he knew that the bears might harm him someday. For example, he named all the bears in the area like Mr. Chocolate, and he was excited when he saw the bear’s fighting. Treadwell said, “I love them with all my heart, I will protect them, I will die for them…” to show his love for the mammal that could kill him, but that was what he wanted to do. In addition, other animals were interesting for him like the adorable foxes. He played with the foxes, treated them like his pet, had feelings for them, and was upset when they were eaten by the bears. Besides, he enjoyed to film the landscapes with rivers and mountains, wonderful animals, and strange fighting between the bears. Every scene is a story of a day that Treadwell stayed with the bear and his emotions for his animals.

Along with the controversial journey of Treadwell, the touching interview of his closet people move the emotion of audience, and change the way people think about him. If people have heard about Timothy Treadwell, they could have imaged a crazy man who lives with the wild animal, or they would have been against his activity. However, they would see the true characteristics of Treadwell through the interviews. For instance, Willy Fulton, pilot that flew with Treadwell, described Treadwell was funny, and he focused on his dream to make it come true. Warren Queeney, his close friend, and other friends told the director that Treadwell always helped others with his heart, and he made people less worried about him when he said he felt free and happy when he could do what he loved. They were sad about his death, but they thought he was cheerful because he now lived with the bears forever. Even though he faced off many difficulties, he always took care himself, and did not want anyone to worry. The interviews hit people feelings about Treadwell’s works and his personal stories.

Beside the remarkable story of Treadwell, Grizzly Man carries his message to others that nature, especially the grizzly bears, needs to be looked after. Treadwell challenged people who against his works or not cooperate with him because they thought that his activity was dangerous, and it did not bring any results. A group of people came to Treadwell’s camp, and warned him to leave the bears alone. Treadwell said, “I came here and protected the animals … The government flying over a grand total of two times in two months. How dare they? They challenge me.” Treadwell would fight anyone, including the government, if they did not allow him to continue his work. He knew he couldn’t completely protect the bears, but he would do everything to keep people to harm the bears and make them understand the importance of the bears for human existence. In addition, he used to go to school and taught children about the bears. He showed the children that the bears were not harmful, and they should protect the bears instead of killing. The film successfully brings the mission of Timothy Treadwell to others.

In the documentary film Grizzly Man, Timothy Treadwell lives, protects, and understand the wildness of the grizzly bear even though he knows that the bears may kill him one day. It also shows a different look about his works, his passion, and people can see, and understand why Treadwell chooses this deadly trip. People must see this film because it is not a tedious documentary film with only facts and long interviews. It is a film of true feelings of a person who put everything he has to his work, and wants others to carry his mission for a better world for the nature, and also for human.

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