ON THE EDGE OF DANGER
DVD, running time 2 hours 35 mins.
To hunt dangerous game in Africa is one of the absolute summits of international big-game hunting. There are plenty of risks involved, and a hunter must accept that these hazards are simply part of the process of hunting truly dangerous game under fair-chase conditions. The veteran big-game hunter understands what he is up against; he's on the edge of danger.
With the possible exception of some pulp-novel writer who is a master of the hairy safari tale, nobody with a straight face can claim that hunters and the hunted are at even odds of getting killed. Yet, there can be no doubt that year in and year out buffaloes, elephants, and large cats do take their own "harvest" of the human kind. There has not been a season in Africa in the last ten years during which there were no hunter fatalities or serious injury. At least one person, and sometimes more, during this period got killed while hunting dangerous game, and several more were seriously wounded. Yes, the basic fact is that death is a possibility for the hunter and his team, albeit it is very rare.
This DVD takes place in Zimbabwe, Zambia, and Mozambique, all locales that have seen hunters seriously injured or killed. The first venue is the Nuanetsi Ranch in Zimbabwe, where old, scabby, mite-bitten buffalo bulls certainly look at you as though they mean harm. Hunting in the same location for leopards proves frightening as well: the cat is wounded, the sun is gone, it is pitch dark, and you cannot see three yards in front of you. The next morning finds the wounded cat holed up in a rock formation; the DVD shows the intestinal fortitude it takes to keep on the track of this maddened leopard to see the business through. Then the film takes us to Zambia and Mozambique where several buffalo and leopard hunts take place; there is an onscreen sequence by one buffalo that charges by backtracking on his pursuers. Throw in an elephant and a croc or two and you have a good mix of dangerous game.
We wish the producers would use captions when the parties are closing in on the animal, for it is difficult to follow the whispers between the hunter and the professional guide. Otherwise, this DVD reflects good HD footage of buffaloes, crocodiles, leopards, and an elephant.
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