It’s hard to imagine the size and hostility of Antarctica from the comfort of our warm homes. Its overwhelming vastness feels like an alien world right here on Earth. Yet, this Wes Andersonian documentary makes it look fun to live there. These are the daily adventures of the people who work at Union Glacier, in West Antarctica.
In 2013 I was the filmmaker attached to the Scott Expedition – the journey that completed Captain Scott’s final, ill-fated expedition from the coast of Antarctica to the South Pole and back again. Our team passed through Union Glacier Camp on route to the starting point of Scott’s Hut at Cape Evans, but after becoming stranded at the camp and working with the staff there; I decided to make this documentary.
London-based filmmaker and illustrator Temujin Doran believes that “this film seems a bit like an antithesis to many expedition and adventure documentaries. There is no great achievement or record broken, nor any real challenge to overcome. Instead it concerns minor details; the everyday tasks of the staff that were made more special by the environment surrounding them. And in fact, I think that’s what attracted me to make this film — the delightful trivialities of an average life, working in Antarctica.”
It feels like that. Fascinating.