DisneyNature have started making a name for themselves by creating some amazing documentaries for the family. After Oceans and African Cats now comes Chimpanzee, a thoroughly entertaining snapshot into the lives of our cute primate cousins.
The story is set up as we follow young Oscar as he plays with his pals and monkeys around under the watchful gaze of his loving mother. We are also introduced to a second collective of chimps who reside on the other side of the land. Their paths cross when the other chimps, led by Scar, decide to take over the land where Oscar lives.
The chimps are brilliantly fun to watch. Their natural, curious minds make for fascinating film moments, especially when they are searching for food. Their ingenious method for eating fire ants is remarkable and their motor skills when trying to open some tough shelled fruit is a joy. A few even accidentally stub their little toes when hammering their fruit and yelp out a sad but cute ‘ooh ooh’ before going back to smashing up the fruit. If you love chimps, you’ll instantly fall in love with Oscar.
Disney favourite and Buzz Lightyear himself Tim Allen provides the voiceover and is entertaining. He knows his audience and even manages to get in one of his Home Improvement monkey chants.
Disney should be commended for bringing nature to their young and impressionable audience. Only then can they truly become aware of the plight of these animals and become proactively involved. However, they do tend to over narrate the situation and ultimately make this a good vs evil tale. By naming the opposing chimpanzee Scar, you are painting a biased viewpoint. I’m sure the story is well rounded enough as it is without the need for over-dramatisation. Hopefully next time they can just rely on the natural story at hand without feeling the need to walk its young audience through it.
Chimpanzee is a fun and entertaining adventure the whole family will enjoy. The chimps are super cute and their story is an engrossing one. Hopefully we’ll get to see how Oscar is doing in the future. For now. Chimpanzee is a great way to introduce your family to the wonders of this planet. And bring done tissues because Chimpanzee isn’t afraid to tug at the heartstrings.