My Octopus Teacher (2020)
IMDb rating: 8.2/10
Rotten Tomatoes rating: 100%
After having filmed much of the footage of underwater phenomena for the hit nature documentary series Blue Planet 2, Craig Foster and his cameraman buddy Roger Horrocks started documenting the kelp forests off the coast of South Africa (the Sea Change non-profit is one of the outcomes of their exploration).
While free diving in the kelp, Craig encountered a wild octopus, and he returned every day for years to document what he’d learned about her world, and how she’d adapted to it. To say that the octopus is an incredible creature is an understatement. In this absorbing 85-minute documentary, we see her shape-shifting to resemble the rocks in her habitat, watch as she adapts her crab-hunting technique to nab a lobster, and witness her regrowing a leg after losing it to a shark.
The New Scientist says, “As Foster points out, we understand so little about octopus, we tend to learn something new whenever we look … The familiar view of My Octopus Teacher, hard won over years of sustained observation, makes for a compelling documentary that may move you despite yourself.”
In April 2021, My Octopus Teacher won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.
Want more nature doccies? Try these:
- Ice on Fire
- Migrations: The Big Swim
- Coasts: Rolling with the Waves
- The Enchanted Forest
- Africa’s Hidden Kingdoms
- Kingdoms of Fire, Ice & Fairy Tales
And in the wake of Glen Biderman-Pam and Mike Sharman’s hilarious viral video (My Kreepy Teacher, a spoof of My Octopus Teacher), you may be looking for more from this South African comedian. Here’s where you’ll find him: