I love my animal stories like a mother musk ox thing loves its dirty baby, so I never missed an episode of Planet Earth, the BBC's educationally vague but visually perfect 2006 documentary series. Later, I even rented the British version on DVD to hear David Attenborough narrate instead of Sigourney Weaver (because duh—I'd like Attenborough to narrate the actual planet Earth, like, everything on it, everywhere, all the time). The Brits released Earth as a big-screen feature in 2007—the show's most spectacular moments, plus additional footage, pared down into one 90-minute film—and now, in conjunction with Disney, it's being released in the U.S. on Earth Day with new narration by James Earl Jones ("Is that Morgan Freeman?" someone near me whispered).

Too bad it totally sucks starving-to-extinction polar-bear bootyhole! There are enjoyable aspects to Earth, things I'm happy to get to see on the big screen: the trip over Angel Falls, massive caribou herds, the aurora australis, the tops of the fucking Himalayas, that leaping shark, my old friend the dainty baboon... but the feature-length restructuring is an embarrassing, ham-fisted failure. It shies away from graphic death (remember when that chimpanzee eats that other chimpanzee's brain?) in favor of shoehorned emotion and anthropomorphized cutesiness. But the worst offender is the narration, which replaces the TV series' light touch and unobtrusive good humor with folksy chuckles and dishonest, unscientific babble.

A mother polar bear emerges from her den: "It's fresh powder conditions up here... she can't help but enjoy the slopes!" Baby polar bears walk around: "Unlike humans, polar-bear cubs don't always listen to their moms." A lynx hunts in a snowy forest: "Those that live here are so hard to glimpse, they're like spirits!" The birds of paradise perform their mind-altering mating display, now backed by a JAZZY SOUNDTRACK: "Get down, baby!" says James Earl Jones. How humiliating.

The dying male polar bear is recast as "the cubs' father" (no, he's clearly NOT! and anyway, more like deadbeat dad), and in the end, after he dies from his walrus wounds, "Their father's brave spirit will always live on in their hearts." That, Earth, is fucking ridiculous. recommended