Coming to theatres today, Friday, April 27:
LOVE & BANANAS: AN ELEPHANT STORY
Washington DC Environmental 2018
Sedona, Earth Focus Environmental, International Wildlife Missoula
An elephant conservationist sets out on a mission to rescue an Asian elephant in Thailand.
Bell’s earnest but clunky film ostensibly focuses on the efforts of Sangdeaun Lek Chailert to rescue Noi Na, a blind elephant in captivity for decades, forced to five tourists rides. Lek, a Thai women whose lifelong advocacy for the endangered Asian elephant made her, for a time, an enemy of the state, and turned her own family against her, is a sympathetic and inspiring figure, and her mission is worthwhile and potentially compelling, if only Bell would trust in its impact enough. Instead, the actress-turned-director can’t help but insert herself in virtually every frame of the film – in addition to being ever-present onscreen, Bell also narrates, to a superfluous and distracting degree. While it’s clear Bell has the best of intentions for the film, its execution is wanting, even if its message may still rightly sway viewers to its cause.