Born in China, B
Rated G, 76 minutes
If you need something fun for the whole family to do this Earth Day weekend, the heartwarming, lush new Disneynature documentary "Born in China" is a solid choice.
Venturing into the wilds of China, "Born in China" captures intimate moments with a panda bear and her growing cub, a young golden monkey who feels displaced by his baby sister, and a mother snow leopard struggling to raise her two cubs.
As part of its annual nature series that usually comes on Earth Day, "Born in China" is Disneynature's 10th film that has explored everything from bears to cats to monkeys, it covers all in what is perhaps its most handsomely filmed adventure. Narrated by John Krasinki for the American version (the Chinese version was released there last summer to modest box-office receipts) and co-produced as a joint venture with Disneynature and Shanghai Media Group, it's directed and co-written by Chinese filmmaker Lu Chuan.
The documentary intermingles the stories several different animals the beautiful landscape of China, which has never looked lovelier than it does here. Though it spends the most time with the snow leopard mother taking care of her cubs, the most memorable is the mother panda bear, though those golden monkeys have a way of stealing scenes with a laugh or "aww" or two.
"Born in China" is nothing new: it promotes the themes of family, love, survival in the wild, something that's common in both the animal and human kingdoms, and there's nothing much here that can't be seen on National Geographic or the other Disneynature films, which will have another one out next year, called "Dolphins."
At just 76 minutes, "Born in China" a pleasant, entertaining film about animals in the wild, short enough to keep the kids engaged for a minutes or two and just long enough for the adults to get their own little monkeys settled after eating plenty of popcorn and M&M's.