A real charmer of a tale as filmmaker Craig Foster returns to South Africa’s Western Cape for a period of rest and recuperation. An area known to him as a child, Foster finds himself drawn to the wild ocean, little expecting an encounter that would change his life.
A keen diver, a chance sighting of a female octopus in an area of calm amidst a kelp forest results in one of the most touching accounts of unexpected friendship. With underwater cameras following and recording every day for almost a year, Foster and the octopus build a bond of trust as he learns, through observation, of the fragility of life and the deep connection between the human and natural worlds.
It’s a bittersweet experience, but one filled with hope as the life cycle of a female octopus takes its natural course. In not looking to be a ‘nature documentary’, My Octopus Teacher is instead more experential, a little more emotive, a little more personal. And this beautiful film, stunningly shot by Pippa Ehrlich and James Reed, is the better for it.
A Netflix original.
Winner of the 2021 Oscar for best documentary