Jungle Book troubles me

We saw the Jungle Book today. (We were the only ones at the 10:30am screening in the downtown theater at Central and 2nd.) It’s beautiful and very well made. However, I’m troubled by two things.

First, I’m uneasy about artificial reality. That is, fake video. We’ve learned to ask of any photo “is it Photoshopped?” Now, we have to ask is that really video or is some — or all — of it fake? At first, I wondered why we try so hard to fake that which we can just record. I suppose, writers want to invoke a scene and many artist seek to faithfully recreate what they see. The same energy flows into motion pictures and technology makes it possible. But it bothers me.

However, not as much as such extreme anthropomorphism. Animals don’t have councils, they don’t have credos or slogans, they don’t even have a Law of the Jungle or a Peace Rock. When we project human society onto wild animals, we ignore their truth and validate our own. It’s unfair to the natural world of which we are a part, yet increasingly, apart.

I preferred Zootopia — you know it’s made up, yet, without any human characters, it illuminates our own nature.

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