Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin Dies

Posted on September 5, 2006

Steve Irwin's FamilyBy now, everyone has heard the tragic news of Steve Irwin's death. Steve Irwin will be missed not only for his exciting documentaries but for his enormous contributions to conservation. Irwin referred to himself as a wild-life warrior: "I consider myself a wild-life warrior. My mission is to save the world's endangered species." You can see some clips from the Crocodile Hunter's documentaries here.

Steve Irwin also made a movie in 2002 called, The Crocodile Hunter: Collision Course. The film also starred his wife, Terri Irwin. Roger & Ebert gave the film two thumbs up. You can read Ebert's review here.
Forget the plot. The movie is really about Steve and Terri taking us on a guided tour of the crocs, snakes, deadly insects and other stars of the outback fauna. Steve's act is simplicity itself. He holds a deadly cobra, say, by its tail and looks straight at the camera and explains that the cobra has enough venom to kill him 100 times over. The cobra twists and tries to strike at Steve's bare leg. He jerks it away. Crikey! Steve's monologues about the incredible danger he's in do sometimes run a bit long, but he has the grace to interrupt them to slap at flies that are biting him.

Later we meet a "bird-eating" spider whose fangs contain venom that would kill Steve, I dunno, a thousand times over, and he pokes it with a stick to make it display its fangs, and it almost bites Steve's thumb. Crikey! Then he shows us the spider's nest, and sticks his finger down it, and yanks it back as if he's been bitten. Crikey! But he was only fooling, mate.

The movie is entertaining exactly on the level I have described it. You see a couple of likable people journeying though the outback, encountering dangerous critters and getting too close for comfort, while lecturing us on their habits and dangers and almost being killed by them. The stunts are not faked, and so there is a certain fascination. Steve and Terri are not exactly developed as deeply realized characters, and only on their Web site did I discover they were married in 1992, and in 1998 gave birth to little Bindi Sue Irwin, who is now 4, and started in as a baby by wrestling tiny gecko lizards. Crikey!
We also thought the film was fun to watch. More about the film can be found on IMDB. Irwin's passion for animals and conservation was part of his everday life. He put a lot of the money he made back into conservation efforts including purchasing land around the world for national parks and his Australian effort, the Australia Zoo. The official websites for the Crocodile Hunter and the Australia Zoo are crocodilehunter.com and www.australiazoo.com.au.
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