There have been many series produced recently about Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection. This single programme offers the most succinct and convincing argument in favour of that theory. The fact that it is a personal view from Britain's most respected natural historian brings only more credibility to the arguments. David Attenborough calmly and authoritatively talks us through the basics of Darwinian theory, the history of how that theory was developed, and explains why he, Attenborough, accepts it as the true explanation for life on earth.
Several other series also produced by the BBC have tried to do the same, as has Richard Dawkins, but none come close to matching the comfotable ease with which Attenborough examines the informations and draws the viewer towards his own conclusion. Attenborough also does this without insulting the intelligence of anyone with a different view; without being hostile or confrontational. He follows the science and lets the science provide the weight of his argument.
The film uses archive footage from Attenborough's career to illustrate Darwin's observations of animals and plants, both in nature and domesticated. It features the important places fro mDarwin's life including his home in Kent, Down House, the Natural History Museum and Cambridge University. But this isn't just a review of Darwin's life; it comes up to date with what the study of DNA has revealed about evolution in the years since Darwin died, and how modern technicques have demonstrated without doubt, for Attenborough, that humans and animals have evolved along different branches of the same tree of life.
It's a brilliant piece of work, perhaps the most lucid and compelling argument for evolution I have encountered, and possibly one of Attenborough's greatest lifetime achievements.