Cheryl and I rented and watched The Story of the Weeping Camel tonight. Very different. Not exactly a thriller (no chase scenes, murders, shoot-outs, or edgy attempts at sexual innuendo) but the scenery and the exoticness of it make up for the "slowness" of the storyline. It's a combination documentary and story about Mongolian camel herders who have to figure out how to get a mother to accept the colt she rejected after a hard labor. And yes, the camels are extremely cute. I enjoyed it and I think that elementary age children who tend to be enthralled with animals and who are just starting to realize that there are other cultures will connect with the story. The ability to read is important because of the use of subtitles -- although, since the dialogue moves slowly it shouldn't be too hard for third graders and up to follow. And even if you're not reading the subtitles you can get a sense for what is going on. The story is simple in a refreshing way.
The landscape and animals reminded me of scenes from Star Wars. The camels sound like wookies, act like eopies, are ridden like falumpasets, and have a striking resemblance to several of the desert creatures.