The documentary March of the Penguins 2: The Next Step premieres March 24th on Hulu.
By I. Simon
It’s been nearly 13 years since Luc Jacquet’s Oscar winning documentary March of the Penguins debuted in theaters, and I remember seeing it twice while it was playing (I was a kid at the time). While documentaries were not my thing back then (and I’m still not too crazy about them, unless the subject matter interests me), I enjoyed it, and not for the narrative, but because of the penguins themselves, as well as Morgan Freeman’s excellent narration. I ended up getting the DVD as a gift when it became available back then, and I’ve watched it a few times since (though I have not viewed it in years). So when I heard that they were doing a sequel, I was somewhat curious. Little did I know that Morgan Freeman would come back to narrate, which got me even more intrigued. As for the documentary, itself it is somewhat inferior to the first, but it still makes a good watch.
The biggest problem with March of the Penguins 2 is the narrative. For a documentary, it feels somewhat convoluted in its storytelling. It jumps from point to point pretty fast, and as a result, I forgot more than half of the information that the documentary was trying to inform me of.
However, like the first March of the Penguins, it is everything else that makes it entertaining. Morgan Freeman’s narration is once again, excellent. The score, while not as memorable as the score for the first one, is really pleasant. The documentary is impeccably shot and well edited. Lastly, you do learn some new details, and you get to watch cute penguins! There are also some really breathtaking underwater sequences.
Overall, not only did March of the Penguins 2 make me want to go back and revisit the first March of the Penguins sometime, but it works on its own as entertaining and somewhat informative fare. If you have 82 minutes or so, and you just want to watch cute penguins and hear Morgan Freeman narrate, as well as learn something here and there, then I would recommend March of the Penguins 2: The Next Step.
I give March of the Penguins 2 a B.