Project Nim (2011)
Critic Consensus: Equal parts hilarious, poignant, and heartbreaking, Project Nim not only tells a compelling story masterfully, but also raises the flag on the darker side of human nature.
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Critic Reviews for Project Nim
This haunting life story is an exquisite example of non-fiction filmmaking as full-bodied, emotionally complex drama.
Project Nim nimbly serves up a profoundly sad tale that raises as many thought-provoking questions as it answers.
This many-faceted time capsule sheds little light, but buried inside it are vexing questions and the still-beating heart of a special creature.
You end up fearing for the humans who contact him. At the same time, you feel his rage.
You're left with the impression that, despite not being able to grasp basic human grammar, perhaps Nim was unwittingly conditioned into understanding the concept of love.
Audience Reviews for Project Nim
"I thought wouldn't it be exciting to communicate with a chimp and find out what it was thinking." Tells the story of a chimpanzee taken from its mother at birth and raised like a human child by a family in a brownstone on the upper West Side in the 1970s.
Four million dogs and cats out of the eight million that enter America's shelters are euthanized each year. If a number alone doesn't stir your emotions, Project Nim will. Among many other things, this movie is a close-up, extreme case of our apathetic, conditional love towards other beings, be them human or otherwise. The movie doesn't accuse anybody, but with actual footage and narration by those involved in Nim's life, it implicitly argues that if we want to include animals in our home, we have a responsibility for their whole life, including understanding them on their terms and providing for their needs (and knowing this information BEFORE bringing them into our life). It reminds me of the conversation held at the beginning of the movie Artificial Intelligence: "It occurs to me ...it isn't just a question of creating a robot that can love. Isn't the real conundrum, can you get a human to love them back?"
'Project Nim'. A chimp raised as a human child and then senselessly moved and emotionally mistreated. For "science". Devastating.