In this mesmerizing and captivating film, well renowned director Werner Herzog explores the life and death of amateur grizzly bear expert and wildlife preservationist man Timothy Treadwell. Treadwell lived with no weapons or any form of defense while in his stay with the bears for thirteen summers. Timothy filmed his adventures in the wild during his final five seasons collecting hundreds of hours of beautiful moments in the vast majestic wild of Alaska. In October 2003, parts of Treadwell??™s ripped, torn, and mangled body were found alongside with those of his girlfriend at the time Amie Huguenard. They were discovered near their campsite in Alaskas Katmai National Park and Reserve. They had been mauled and devoured by a grizzly who in the film Timothy calls this bear suspected of killing him and his girlfriend the Grinch. The Grinch was tagged and had numbers tattooed under its lip (the Grinch was later shot by park officials. and their remains were found in this bear) During Timothys filming he wrestles with the questions of wild nature, but also the mystery of human nature as he documents. But was Timothy Treadwell the passionate gentle warrior and fearless environmentalist who devoted his life to living peacefully among these Alaskan grizzly bears in order to save them Or was he a deluded human hater of society whose reckless actions resulted in his own death, as well as those of his girlfriend and one of the bears he loved and swore to protect Did he originally go to Alaska to die In all of his video monologues Treadwell shows a remarkable shallowness of observation, particularly in regard to matters of life and death. He is fascinated by and dwells on the potential for getting eaten by a bear. maybe in Treadwells mind he wanted to go to Alaska and stay there never to return, remain part of the Alaskan wild and by having these thoughts may have given him the comfort to recklessly approach these bears with such dumbfounded confidence it kept him alive for a little bit longer. Even when all the guide books tell you to never get within one hundred to a thousand feet of these bears Timothy would be within ten feet. Even with a grizzly bear rearing up ready to strike and make Timothy his next meal. Timothy woofs, hollers, and barks at that bear, challenging the bear in its own territory like some crazy Greek god crossed with a passionate gentle warrior right out of the pages of a comic book.
Not everyone believed in Treadwells unorthodox research styles. Some of the locals said that by living among the grizzlies he was crossing over a line that had been respected by native Alaskans for thousands of years. Wildlife experts expressed concerns that by taking away the bears natural fear of humans and portraying the animals as cuddly companions Timothy was doing them more harm than good. And while one of the main reasons for his Alaskan trips was to protect grizzlies from poachers, park officials contended that poaching was never a serious threat to the three thousand grizzlies living in the Kodiak territory. Adding more fuel to this fire we call controversy is the fact that aspects of Treadwells life remained shrouded in mystery hidden under the veils of perception until his death. He lied about his background even to his close friends, claiming to be Australian when in fact he was from a middle-class family in suburban New York. He had a history of serious drug and alcohol problems, battles with depression and had had several run-ins with the law and various bad people before devoting his life to bears, which he credited with turning his life around. During the film timothy shoots some spectacular footage that sticks out in my mind of these enormous grizzlies hunting, playing and fighting just feet from Treadwell and his camera. Treadwell shot these scenes over his last five visits to the Alaskan wilderness, apparently with the intention of creating a wildlife documentary. Even more fascinating and interesting are the times Treadwell turns the camera on himself, alternately testifying to his almost religious love for the grizzlies and revealing lesser side, all too human emotions, including vanity, rage, paranoia and loneliness. Timothy would go off on these rants and tangents on how certain people were to blame for the bears being poached and some these people in question were some of timothys friends and colleagues. Timothy even writes in his own journal that he feels that his girlfriend is going to leave him and how being lonely was getting to him. Timothys girlfriend also kept a journal and wrote in her journal that she felt trapped and had nowhere to go nowhere to run because she had no were to run to she was deathly afraid of bears and was going to leave him due to his unstable behavior. During the last months timothy was on his way back to the civilized world when at the airport his ticket did not check out. being the anti person he was he didn??™t want to deal with all the fuss. So Timothy returned to his camp and by this time the bears he knew and worked with were in hibernation. Thus remains the ill-equipped and unprepared bears that were left lurking in the wild looking for that one last meal. Timothy knew these bears were different and still he pressed his luck, but in this case his luck run out. Did Timothy knowingly press his luck with these bears no one will ever know but Timothy