Saturday, March 31, 2012

The Dubious Nature of Timothy Treadwell

If you ever get a chance to watch Grizzly Man, see it if for any other reason because you will encounter one of the most polarizing central figures ever caught on film in Timothy Treadwell. After watching the film for a class earlier in the month, there is part of me that lauds Treadwell's efforts in making peace with the bears in the Alaskan wilderness. However, as the film progresses, I am equally disturbed by his anti-social behavior. His profanity laden tirades near the end practically negate all the good he thinks he's doing. It's one thing to care for certain animals and give them an opportunity to be seen from a more intimate angle, but to go out and blame other people (and God) for not caring enough defeats the purpose of his expeditions. Whether he likes it or not, he's still a human being who needs human interaction. And like the sun rising in the East and setting in the West, it surprises me none that he was mauled to death by a bear. I knew it the moment I saw his years of birth and death at the beginning of the movie. What does surprise me is that through it all, the service and the gradual loss of sanity, he lasted for thirteen summers of living amongst these bears. Just one summer is enough adventure for a lifetime. To go back twelve additional years speaks to the dedication of the human will when fully committed to a task.

Picture of Timothy Treadwell courtesy of MSNBC

No comments:

Post a Comment