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Parents' Guide to

Grizzly Man

By Cynthia Fuchs, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

This excellent documentary is not meant for kids.

Movie R 2005 103 minutes
Grizzly Man Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

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

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 16+

Not what I expected

I will admit I was very cautious about The Grizzly Man movie for some time. The cover of the movie at first made it appear that it might be violent. And because it was rated R for language I was concerned that we might get to hear the disturbing graphic audio tapes of Timothy and Amie when they were killed by the bears. But it is actually not violent other than a scene with two bears fighting. And the audio death tapes are not played. we do see the rib and arm bone of Timothy at the site where he and Amie were killed. the worst scene is where Timothy in a video gives a hate speech to the National forest service and wildlife organizations and uses the F and M-F words many times and also gives the middle finger. Overall Timothy Treadwell seems to be a very loosly hinged individual and he is like a child in his emotional understanding of the world and how it really works. As a counselor in watching Timothy Treadwell I suspect he might have had Boarderline personality disorder in which a person expresses emotions in highly extreme and unexpected ways. and appearing to have no fear whatsoever of the bears or how serious and fragile his life is out there. Even though he warns others against doing what he does and says he is fully aware of the danger. I think he has an overly inflated sense of his own self safety however. Also he becomes rather paranoid and delusional about people and feels that the world has turned against him and is threatening him and he is also the only person alive who can protect the bears, and is. his worsening de-socialization and behavior also point towards possible schizophrenic tendencies or schizophrenia itself. Especially believing that he should also be an animal rather than a human. I think he actually thought he was a bear as well many times. This is an instance where I strongly believe that if Timothy had gotten the appropriate counseling and intervention and treatment for his condition that he might still be alive today. Many individuals with underlying mental health problems often take significant and excessive risks and simply cannot have a sense of the true danger and feel they must continue to push such dangerous limits. In his own way he was desperately calling out for help and nobody could see the warning signs and take action. If anything they rather encouraged it. the movie is good, not violent and not a waste of time,  but do consider keeping children away because of the graphic language used in some scenes.

This title has:

Too much swearing
age 14+

Great Documentary!

Very Very good documentary that I thought was very well done and narrarated. In a couple scenes he says the F word and in one instance he uses it about twenty times in about 2 minutes. Also conatins some violent content. Appropriate for ages 14 +

This title has:

Too much swearing

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (1 ):

This smart, provocative film centers on an "argument" between filmmaker Werner Herzog and his subject. Where Treadwell calls the bears his "friends," and names them ("Mr. Chocolate," "Sergeant Brown," "Wendy"), Herzog calls the animals wild beasts. Some interviewees see Treadwell as "crossing a line" he should have left alone. Others see him as a man who lost his way ("He meant well, but to me, he was acting like he dealing with people in bear costumes"). According to Herzog's narration, Treadwell "stylized himself as Prince Valiant, fighting the bad guys." These opponents were ambiguous and legion, including poachers, other campers, park authorities, even Treadwell's own demons. A onetime waiter, failed actor, and recovering alcoholic, he sought a cause, a community in which he could feel comfortable and sympathetically reflected.

In the bears, the film proposes, Treadwell found companionship and refuge, a way to escape or maybe remake himself. To achieve this end, he rejected his unhappy past, spent more and more time in the parks, "methodically" taping over scenes he saw as "mistakes," perfecting the image he wanted to present, whether to himself or some future audience is not clear. "It is a simpler world," Herzog remarks of Treadwell's seeming sanctuary, "but it is a harsh, brutal world. We can't live in that world because we're very different from them."

Movie Details

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