In this spectacular feature-length documentary, oceanographer Jacques Cousteau and an NFB crew sail up the St. Lawrence River to the Great Lakes on board the specially equipped vessel, the Calypso. They explore the countryside from their helicopter and plumb the depths of the waters in their diving saucer. They encounter shipwrecks, the Manicouagan power dam, Niagara Falls, the locks of the St. Lawrence Seaway and an underwater chase with caribou.
This documentary records the journey undertaken by Jacques Cousteau, his 24-member team, and an NFB film crew to explore the Grand Banks of Newfoundland, one of the world's richest fishing areas. They discover shipwrecks, film icebergs and observe beluga whales, humpback whales and harp seals. The film also includes a fascinating sequence showing Calypso divers freeing a calf whale entrapped in a fishing net.
For more background information about this film, please visit the NFB.ca blog.
This adventure film features Scott McVay, an authority on whales, and filmmaker Bill Mason. The objective was to film the bowhead, a magnificent inhabitant of the cold Arctic seas brought to the edge of extinction by overfishing. With helicopter and Inuit guide, aqualungs and underwater cameras, the expedition searches out and meets the bowhead and beluga.
Please note that this is an archival film that makes use of the word “Eskimo,” an outdated and offensive term. While the origin of the word is a matter of some contention, it is no longer used in Canada. The term was formally rejected by the Inuit Circumpolar Council in 1980 and has subsequently not been in use at the NFB for decades. This film is therefore a time-capsule of a bygone era, presented in its original version. The NFB apologizes for the offence caused.
In this short documentary from conservationist Bill Mason, he illustrates that although the Great Lakes have had their ups and downs, nothing has been harder to take than what humans have done to them lately. In the film, a lone canoeist lives through the changes of geological history, through Ice Age and flood, only to find himself in the end trapped in a sea of scum.
This personal documentary is the story of Teresa Marshall, who grew up on a British Columbia ranch. Every child needs a demon, and Teresa took battle against rattlesnakes. In the dry interior of B.C., the south Okanagan and Similkameen valleys form the bio-region known as Canada's "pocket desert." As settlers' dreams of creating an agricultural Eden erase fragile desert lands that support a breathtaking array of wild species, the narrator and her snake-hunting neighbours are forced to examine their environmental attitudes.
By the late 1800s the free-ranging buffalo of the western plains of North America were almost extinct. This documentary is the story of the buffalo's revival. Live action, eye-witness accounts and archival photos document our fascination with this ancient and legendary animal. By the director of Atonement.
This documentary looks at the risks of a proposed sour gas well near Clearwater River, in Rocky Mountain House, Alberta. Farmers and landowners all share concerns. Residents opposed to the well fear a deadly hydrogen sulphide leak. Shell Canada says it must drill to meet energy needs. When mediation talks break down, both sides anxiously await a ruling from Alberta's Energy and Utilities Board.
This documentary explores the fate of the endangered wild Suffield horses of Alberta. Located near a military base close to Medicine Hat, these animals were originally domesticated but returned to the wild over generations. These horses face endangerment because of their growing numbers and the limitations of their environment.
This documentary from the Shining Mountains series follows mountain guide, pilot and cinematographer Guy Clarkson on an ecological journey through the Rockies. Clarkson explores the area’s rock, ice, flora and fauna, which have, for eons, adjusted without complaint to every fluctuation in the natural order of things. Since the arrival of Europeans, however, the damage to ecosystems and tribes alike has approached a point of no return. From the glaciers of the Columbia Ice Fields, to the wolf packs of Yellowstone National Park, to the sacred hunting grounds of the Blackfoot nations, Clarkson finds perspective in the wisdom of the experts and elders who know this region best.
Ages 10 to 11
Geography - Environmental Issues
Science - Environmental Science
The teacher can ask students to study how locks function and build a model lock; locate, on a map of the St. Lawrence Seaway, the major locks; identify a few shipwrecks in or near Canadian waters (Titanic, Empress of Ireland) and study the vessels’ history; come up with series of questions and answers exploring jobs relating to oceanography, underwater archaeology and deep-sea diving, and present them as part of a role-play.