Maggie Koerth-Baker at 9:39 am Thu, Aug 11, 2011
ADVERTISE AT BOING BOING!
When filmmaker Paul Kroeker found a dragonfly dying on his deck, he turned the animal's final moments into a beautiful and haunting short movie. Who says insects can't be charismatic fauna?
(Via John Pavlus)
Dragonflies live about 5-6 months as eggs and larva and then only a month as adult dragonflies.
I do hope the proceeds are going to the dragonfly’s family.
Actually pretty touching… but than I love anything that adds a touch of consciousness to creatures or things that would otherwise have none.
Couldn’t have said it better, Chantalle.
i’m quite sure the dragonfly experiences consciousness regardless of whether or not it’s the subject of human sympathy.
beautiful little film — probably shouldn’t’ve watched it at work, though.
(something in my eye…)
I loved it. End of the life has similar moments, doesn’t matter what form of life you have. Interesting!
I really liked the POV shots and cut aways to the other flying insects.
Insect snuff filmmaker murders dragonfly, tonight, on Law & Order: PeTA Crime Unit.
Pure fiction. The PETACU only investigates mammal deaths. Everyone knows the Man doesn’t care about the insect species.
Very nicely done!
I did one a bit ago about a moth I found dying:
Is this a developing genre, insects in the throes of death?
I do hope so…
sad for the moth, but aren’t cats amazing in that sense — that even as domesticated animals, they’ve retained enough instinct that you can see the same behaviors in them as you see in documentaries of wild/big cats? especially if they’ve had reason and/or opportunity to hunt. our blue-blood siamese who came from a breeder is a total weenie when he sees bugs, at most fretting and furrowing his brow at them, immediately washing his hand if he dares to touch it — but our tortoiseshell girl who was a rescued and hungry stray gleefully hunts and devours them if we don’t save them in time!
I couldn’t help but anthropomorphize a bit at 0:55, when it looked for all the world like it was shaking four fists in agony at an uncaring God.
Beautiful. Anyone know what the music is that he used?
ETA – Nevermind. I found it via his Vimeo site hosting the movie – “Composer : Gustavo Santaolalla From the Babel Soundtrack”
I’m a little misty myself. They are beautiful creatures. And definitely an ally in the Long War on Bugs. I tell my kids that unless it’s a black widow, let that spider in the house do it’s thing. It’s on our side.
The first comment makes me think that a dragonfly is a dragonfly larva’s way to make more dragonfly larvae. We’re so focused on the imago-as-the-animal–why not consider the lifestage where the animal spends the most time as the animal?
Neat point. Richard Dawkins famously said that humans are human DNA’s way of replicating itself.
Also: people who smugly assert that non-human animals are without what one might call “consciousness” (a nebulously defined term, that), always strike me as arrogant and potentially violent. Like, the systematic kind of violence.
I’d prefer to err on the side of caution on that issue, myself.
/pets the cat
Richard Dawkins famously said that humans are human DNA’s way of replicating itself.
The version I heard was “A zygote is a gamete’s way of producing more gametes. This may be the purpose of the universe.” That was Heinlein in ’73, right around the time Dawkins was working on The Selfish Gene. It’s definitely an eye-opening way to think about evolution and our own cosmic significance, or shortage thereof.
We are, as of today. entering the annual month of ‘gigantic spider monsters’ in our house. It happens every year, and I don’t like it.
Spiders may be helping us out, and up to a certain size I’m OK with that, but that ends when they surpass the size of the last knuckle on my pinky finger. Or if they walk on my bed or (ACK!) pillow. Then I have to get all up in their faces (or throw a book at them anyway).
I am all in favour of empathizing with the little critters, and I love dragonflies (voracious mosquito eaters that they are) but I can’t get on board with spider liking.
I’d welcome a huge spider. It might eat the black widows.
What a great homage to an interesting insect. I lived at a place where every year the dragon flies gathered in their thousands, there was literally no place you could walk, stand or turn to that was not covered in colorful dragon flies. The cats had a field day eating them until they got sick. I can still remember the shimmering color of their shells perched delicately on low hanging power lines for as far as the eye could see.
I have a dragonfly tattooed on my arm, these are amazing creatures
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