A Japanese zoo put on an escape drill in order to prepare its employees for how to deal with a loose polar bear — and, truly, we’ve never witnessed such commitment and bravery.
We’re not talking about the rangers who pretended to subdue the creature. Our applause goes to whoever was playing the role of “Polar Bear” with more realism than an Andy Serkis motion captured performance.
In the now-viral footage from the drill, obtained by The AP, you can see the polar bear portrayer go completely method once the scene starts.
It stalks the park with a menacing, yet gentle gaze; it bulldozes through a pair of workers who attempt to trap it in a net; it comes face to face with “petrified” zoo-goers and, in true bear fashion, mauls them to “pieces.”
But the real performance comes in the tragic final act, when the bear is cornered by zoo rangers. The performer’s demeanor says it all: you can *feel* the bear’s silent hopelessness, its misunderstood frustration, its dread of knowing, no matter how much it tries, it will never escape from this hellish tourist trap it’s forced to call home.
It all comes to a Shakespearean climax as the bear, having been “tranquilized,” theatrically stumbles to the ground while zoo rangers circle around it.
Watch what critics (AKA Twitter users) are calling the performance of a lifetime (below).
We know, we know… chills.
Someone call Disney so we can put this performer in the next live action remake!
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