Mzima: Portrait of a Spring
In this epic, hour-long special, award-winning filmmakers Alan and Joan Root explore the myriad life that flourishes in Kenya’s Mzima spring. Their stunning cinematography captures the creatures’ incredible interdependence, as anhinger birds dart through the sky, oryx drink thirstily on the banks and otters feast on fish.
In this otherwise arid land, the spring water filters down through the volcanic soil of the Chyulu hills, providing an oasis for a wealth of birds, mammals and reptiles. Providing a fascinating insight into the hippo’s underwater world, the couples’ impressive photography captures the graceful movements of these mammals. Highly dangerous creatures, the Roots had a number of close-calls with face masks bitten off, and in Alan’s case, a leg nearly amputated.
An intriguing portrayal of a varied ecosystem deep within Tsavo National Park, Mzima: Portrait of a Spring was widely acclaimed. Receiving rave reviews when distributed in Britain as part of the Survival series, it also won the Red Ribbon at the American Film Festival.
Its success was echoed thirty years later when Alan’s protégés, Mark Deeble and Victoria Stone, made an award-winning film about the same area, Mzima – Haunt of the Riverhorse (2003).