Lisa and I saw the movie last night, ending months of anticipation.
In a word (or 3), Birdcouple loved it. The movie captured the joy, zaniness and well, stress, of competitive birding. And through three different characters and different lenses, as it were, the tension between the release from life that birding is, and the responsibilies of life.
Most importantly, it was fun and touching.
There were some marvelous scenes involving beautiful looks at birds -- Xantu's Hummingbird and Great Grey Owl, to name two. Could it have used more birds? Of course, but we would have said that in any case.
W's one critique is that there was no scene in the movie where birders worried/argued over the identification of a species - an Alder vs Willow flycatcher, say, or a late fall warbler. That's a big part of a Big Year and, instead, the three birders nailed everything they saw. A bit unrealistic.
Most importantly, the movie didn's stereotype birders in the usual way as antisocial geeks. That's a big step forward for the birding community.
L and I are both wondering how non-birders perceive/enjoy the movie. It's hard for us to put ourselves in non-birder brains. :) We'd love to hear any anecdotes on that score!!
In the meantime, the Ny Times has done a fair review here.