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Genesis. Where Are We Coming From

   2005    Nature
The cycle of life of a handful of different animals is captured on film in a whole new way in this documentary. Using special motion-control photography equipment, Genesis allows filmgoers to view animal behaviors which are too small, too slow, or too difficult to normally be seen with the naked eye, including a chick hatching its way out from inside an egg, jellyfish drying into nothing under the heat of the sun, or a snake slowly swallowing prey bigger than itself. This footage is accompanied by narration from Sotigui Kouyate, who uses simple props and easily understandable analogies to explain the science behind what its shown on screen. Genesis was directed by Claude Nuridsany and Marie Perennou, who previously created another acclaimed scientific documentary, Microcosmos.

An Everyday Miracle

   1998    Medicine
This series, presented by Robert Winston, takes us on a journey from birth to death using time-lapse photography, computer graphics and various state-of-the-art imaging techniques to explore every aspect, every nook and crevice of the human body in its various stages of growth, maturity and eventual decay. Though heart-warming in that it shows the commonality of human experience, The Human Body is also a potentially depressing reminder of our frail physicality and mortality." In this episode, follow Jeff and Phillippa from conception to the birth of their first child Bob in An Everyday Miracle. Learn why conception is the most dangerous part of your life, and the struggles that you must go through to even reach the first step. The couple openly discuss their concerns and joy throughout their entire pregnancy and this episode in particular would be well worth viewing by those who are expecting their first child. From experience, this tasteful and informative section captures aspects of pregnancy that the hospital-run Maternity Classes don't explain as well. You even get to see the birth of their child which makes for a great lead into the next section. And in case you were wondering, every day there are around 100 million acts of sexual intercourse taking place in the world resulting in around 910,000 conceptions.
Series: The Human Body

The Private Life of Plants: Travelling

   1994    Nature
Sir David Attenborough reveals plants as they have never been seen before - on the move and dangerously devious. About the major problems of life - growing, finding food, reproduction - and the varied ways plants have evolved to solve it. Filmed from the plant's point of view, using computer animations, fibre-optics and unique time-lapse photography. The first episode looks at how plants are able to move". The bramble is an aggressive example: it advances forcefully from side to side and, once settled on its course, there is little that can stand in its way. An altogether faster species is the birdcage plant, which inhabits Californian sand dunes. When its location becomes exposed, it shifts at great speed to another one with the assistance of wind — and it is this that allows many forms of vegetation to distribute their seeds. While not strictly a plant, the spores of fungi are also spread in a similar fashion. One of the most successful (and intricate) flowers to use the wind is the dandelion, whose seeds travel with the aid of 'parachutes'. They are needed to travel miles away from their parents, who are too densely packed to allow any new arrivals. Trees have the advantage of height to send their seeds further, and the cottonwood is shown as a specialist in this regard. The humidity of the tropical rainforest creates transportation problems, and the liana-species Alsomitra macrocarpa is one plant whose seeds are aerodynamic 'gliders'. Some, such as those of the sycamore, take the form of 'helicopters', while others, such as the squirting cucumber release their seeds by 'exploding'. Water is also a widely used method of propulsion. The tropical sea bean Entada gigas has one of the biggest fruits of all plants and is dispersed by water streams. However, most plants use living couriers, whether they be dogs, humans and other primates, ants or birds, etc., and to that end, they use colour and smell to signify when they are ripe for picking.
Series: The Private Life of Plants
Planet Earth
Planet Earth

   2007    Nature
Generation Iron
Generation Iron

   2017    Culture
The Story of India
The Story of India

   2007    History
Science and Islam
Science and Islam

   2017    History
The Story of Science
The Story of Science

   2010    History
Tales by Light Season 2
Tales by Light Season 2

   2017    Nature