26 May 2010 | rgcustomer
After following the US version of the Meerkat Manor series through all four seasons, I was eager to see The Story Begins.
I'm disappointed that this is presented as a documentary, because it is not. Obviously the footage cannot be Flower and her family, and the landscape (even "Eden") bears little resemblance to that in the series. But even most of the story is not real, because it imagines what the meerkats are thinking, even more than the series did, and attributes all kinds of magical and religious thoughts to them.
One of the stupider lines was something about how Flower supposedly learns that family is where everyone is always safe. Right. Safe enough to be cannibalized by one's pregnant aunt, or have your tail chewed by a pregnant sister, or simply get abandoned by a horny or brain-damaged babysitter.
The film, which mostly rehashes the same "meerkat rules" that everyone already knows from the series, is full of long meaningless pauses, and irrelevant shots of things like the sun or clouds. I guess we're supposed to be having Real Deep Thoughts during those times, but mostly I was wondering when this thing would end, and it's not even that long. They could easily have cut this down by 30 minutes, and have kept the story interesting.
Also, there is one very obvious morph transition when Flower suddenly changes from infant to adolescent. I have to wonder what the editor and director were thinking with that one. It's totally out of place and inappropriate. A simple fade out and in would have been much better.
Whoopi, love ya, but you are no narrator. Neither is Stockard, so don't feel bad. This should have been Sean's.
So, in summary, don't bother. It does add some historical context to Flower, Zaphod, and Youssarian, but it's such a slog to get through it, the payoff is hardly worth it.
Please, Please, do NOT make a sequel about Shakespeare.