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2004 42 minutes DVD (region-free)


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An ideal film for introducing children, even as young as 5, to some of the science of the natural world, and for stimulating art work and creative writing.
That’s how a London Primary school teacher described this film.

Originally brought out as a video in 1995 at the beginning of our series on the World’s Butterflies, “Beauty…for Survival?” brought together film (not video) footage from our trips to no less than 11 countries.

Now transferred and re-edited as a DVD, it includes as an option the scientific names of all the 60+ species shown. And the quality of 16mm Kodachrome comes across excellently, backed by the lyrical music written for the film by our friend, Maciek Hrybowicz of Sound Partners Music.

The film opens with a magical view of the huge Tree Nymphs flying in the forest on Penang Hill, Malaysia.

The story examines the role played by a butterfly’s appearance in its struggle to survive, and illustrates the part played by:

  • hiding with the help of camouflage,
  • decoy features,
  • shamming dead, and
  • mimicry.

An ideal introduction to the butterfly world for people of all ages” was how the film was described by one commentator.
From the Library

On the DVD scenes have been included from Bhutan, Malaysia and Peru.
Buddhist monastery dancing in Thimphu links with a gorgeous specimen of the remarkable Indian Fritillary Hyperbius argyreus, and a long sequence of the Malaysian Rajah Brooke Birdwings Trogonoptera brookiana by the river at Kualah Woh at the foot of the Cameron Highlands, and species in Peru, from the riverside of the Madre de Dios river, in the western Amazon Basin, and higher in the Andes at the well-known forest location of Tingo Maria.

“Beauty… for Survival?”