Parents' Guide to

David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet

By Danny Brogan, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 10+

Attenborough's stark documentary is essential viewing.

Movie PG 2020 83 minutes
David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 8+

Based on 6 parent reviews

age 10+

Powerful, yet be prepared

A beautiful and heart wrenching film that sends the message loud and clear: things aren’t looking good, in fact, it’s downright bleak. While the end of the movie does talk about what’s possible for avoiding total collapse, my 11 year old, extremely sensitive son, was disturbed by a scene of walruses falling off cliffs to their deaths because the ice where they normally live had melted. I think it’s still important for everyone to see, including children that can make sense of what they’re seeing, but parents should be prepared to have conversations with their children about the reality.
age 10+

Not for sensitive children

My 7 year old daughter started throwing up in the middle of the documentary she suddenly became very nervous and imagined that by the time shes 27 there will be no wild life which made her devastated .

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (6 ):
Kids say (2 ):

This powerful documentary finds the much-loved and well-respected natural historian in a somber mood. For the first two thirds of David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet, Attenborough doesn't sugarcoat the negative impact humans have had on the natural environment. Talk of lost species, uninhabitable areas, and irreversible damage are backed up with increasingly depressing facts and figures projected on screen. While the documentary provides a chance for the the 93-year-old to look back on his remarkable life -- archive footage provides some of the film's more lighter moments -- this is less a celebration, more a warning.

One of Attenborough's biggest strengths has always been his ability to replicate the emotions of the viewer. He looks just as excited when encountering a rare species as we are witnessing it on screen. It's why, when talking directly to camera, his desperate plea for change is so hard hitting. Yet despite the gloomy future portrayed, the final third of the film offers hope. Hope that is delivered inspiringly by the man himself. Change, he argues is not an option, it is a necessity. But it can be done -- Attenborough lists a number of ways in which people can help. Attenborough calls A Life on Our Planet his witness statement. It's also perhaps his most important film yet.

Movie Details

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