Simply the Best Documentaries

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The Nazis, A Warning From History. Episode 5
The Incredible Human Journey: Asia
Jupiter the Giant Planet
Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy 3
Touching the Void
Unexplained Mysteries
What Happened Before The Big Bang
Rome is Burning
Harmony of the Worlds
Einsteins Nightmare
Project Nim
Urban Jungles
Cooked: Water
The Universe: 7 Wonders of the Solar System
The Insatiable Appetite
Charles Darwin and the Tree of Life
Are We All Bigots
The Birth of Israel
Art Rock
Flight of the Butterflies
The Lost Worlds of Planet Earth
Secrets of the Space Probes
A Passage to India
What is Life
1945 The Savage Peace
Chased by Sea Monsters 3of3
Is Anybody Out There
The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin
The Captains
The Farthest
Precision the Measure of All Things
Fracking The New Energy Rush
Amazing Ocean
Blood Of The Vikings: The Sea Road

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The Big Freeze
The Big Freeze 1993

As almost all animal inhabitants of Antarctica are forced to migrate north, the sea underneath the frozen ice still provides a home to many specially adapted fish whose cells are protected from freezing through an 'antifreeze' liquid. Many of them feed on the faeces of other animals. The most notable larger animal that does not migrate north is perhaps the Weddell Seal, which can be found as close as 1300 kilometres to the pole. Groups of seals tear holes into the ice to dive for food and come up to breathe. The females come back to the ice to give birth. This episode also describes primitive plant life such as lichen, which can still be found on the continent in winter, even in the extremely dry and permanently frozen valleys conditions under which dead animals can lie frozen for many centuries without decomposing. It details the life of the Emperor Penguin, 'the only birds to lay their eggs directly on ice'. While other animals retreat, Emperors migrate not just to the ice, but into the Antarctic continent. The females lay eggs which are incubated by the males under the harshest conditions on Earth (huddling closely together for warmth), while the females return to the sea.

Category:Nature  Duration:29:00   Series: Life in the Freezer

Life: Primates
Life: Primates 2009

Intelligence and adaptability allow primates to tackle the many challenges of life, and this is what makes our closest relatives so successful. This resourcefulness has enabled primates to conquer an incredible diversity of habitat. Hamadryas baboons live on the open plains of Ethiopia in groups up to 400 strong. Strength in numbers gives them some protection from potential predators. But, should their path cross with other baboon troops, it can lead to all-out battle, as males try to steal females from one another, and even settle old scores. Japanese macaques are the most northerly-dwelling primates and they experience completely different challenges. Some beat the freezing conditions by having access to a thermal spa in the middle of winter. But this privilege is only for those born of the right female bloodline. For western lowland gorillas, it's the male silverback that leads his family group in the rich forests of the Congo basin. He advertises his status to all with a powerful chest-beating display. Most primates are forest dwellers, and one of the strangest is the tarsier – the only purely carnivorous primate. As it hunts for insects the tarsier leaps from tree to tree in the dead of night, using its huge forward-facing eyes to safely judge each jump. Good communication is essential for success in primate society.

Category:Nature  Duration:59:00   Series: Life

The Silk Spinners
The Silk Spinners 2005

Silk is the invertebrates' great invention, used in a range of ways from from the protective stalks of lacewing eggs to the amazing hanging threads of New Zealand's 'glow worms'. Spiders, though, have taken silk-spinning to extremes. The common wolf spider has no web, but the female is a gentle parent, encasing her eggs in silk and carrying the precious bundle wherever she goes. The bolas spider uses a ball of sticky silk soaked in a copy of moth pheromone to lure its prey. Millions of communal spiders live and feed together in a vast, towering web - an arachnophobe's nightmare.

Category:Nature  Duration:49:45   Series: Life in the Undergrowth

Sea Monsters
Sea Monsters 2011

The setting alternates between prehistory and modern day times in which scientists study the fossilized remains of the creatures in the film. In 2009, a group of paleontologists discover a rare fossil in Kansas. The fossil was previously exposed by a summer rain, and it appears to be a marine reptile, tracing back over 70 million years. It was a female Dolichorhynchops and will be the inspiration for telling the story of Dolly, who travels the Kansas Inland Sea, 80 million years ago during the late Cretaceous period with her family. The film brings to life some of the most bizarre, ferocious and fascinating creatures to ever inhabit the ocean, incluing Tylosaurus, Xiphactinus, Cretoxyrhina, and Ammonite. It combines animation with recreations in a 3D prehistoric adventure. A journey to the bottom of the ancient oceans dramatizes awe-inspiring creatures.

Category:Science  Duration:37:45      

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