Between September and October, Monarch Butterflies migrate south from Canada for the winter. Millions of these iconic orange, black and white butterflies undertake this incredible, seemingly impossible journey, which sees them filling the air along a flight path to overwintering sites in Mexico.
Today, this migration is celebrated all over the country, with butterfly spotters along their migration route eagerly awaiting flyovers or, even better, stopovers in their backyards. In the 1930s however, this epic migration literally flew under most people’s radar.
In the IMAX film Flight of the Monarch: 3D, audiences learn how Canadian zoologist Dr. Fred Urquhart and his wife, Nora, uncovered the beautiful majesty and incredible scope of the Monarch migration pattern. The film tells this multi-generational tale from the perspective of a family line of Monarchs beginning with “Dana” before shifting to her daughter and, eventually, her granddaughter as they mate and make their way from the Milkweed fields of Texas to the mountains of Southern Mexico.
Flight of the Butterflies: 3D shows how a simple question asked by a boy with an interest in insects — butterflies, in particular — led to one of the greatest discoveries in entomological history. Along the way, it explores the many stages of the Monarch’s life cycle, from eggs to caterpillars to butterflies departing on their final flight. Throughout the film, the danger and drama of this three-generation cycle is shared through breathtaking visuals and camerawork.
Thanks to stunning 3D effects, audiences feel surrounded by hundreds of vibrant, brightly-colored wings. Audiophiles will appreciate how the IMAX 3D Theater’s state-of-the-art speaker system adds depth and intimacy to even the whisper-quiet rustling of butterfly wings. The Aquarium is delighted to bring back this newly digitally-remastered favorite, which pairs perfectly with a trip through the recently reopened Butterfly Garden in the Ocean Journey building.