Summing up Antarctica
The Penguin Counters
Review by Ross Anthony

Counters, here, is a noun. These quirky people actually tally up sea birds. I'd originally read the title with Counters as a verb. That is, as in "climate change mounts obstacles, but the Penguin Counters." (Think "The Empire Strikes Back.") I was eager to learn of this clever creature's plan to adapt and best the consequences of the short-sided human with which it shares a pretty blue planet.

Alas, the film is about quirky humans that just can't wait to pull out their old-school (no batteries necessary) palm clickers and reckon a number that hopefully will help the scientific community get a more accurate handle of the entire polar picture as the climate changes.

That said, as portrayed here these people are oddly just as interesting and even cute as the waddling black and white birds. "Penguin Counters" succeeds at being almost entirely charming. Its structure is relaxed and meandering. That said, the digressions into Shackleton's journey needed a bit more backstory, and the tale of Shack's right hand man Frank Wild simply goes long.

Not as cinematically gorgeous as many recent polar docs, but somehow more up close and personal.

From Press Notes: "Armed with low-tech gear and high-minded notions that penguin populations hold the key to human survival, Ron Naveen lays bare his 30+ year love affair with the world's most pristine scientific laboratory: The Antarctic."

-- Books by Author/Illustrator Ross Anthony --

  • The Penguin Counters. Copyright © 2017.
  • Written and Directed by Peter Getzels and Harriet Gordon.

Grade..........................B+ (2.5/4)

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Copyright © 1998-2022 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: or call 1-800-767-7186. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.

Last Modified: Tuesday, 09-May-2017 18:32:53 PDT