January is my birthday month, so I decided that I would try and do something quite unique and special for this milestone in my life. I will be turning 47, so I decided to watch 48 (47+1 for good luck) of my all time favorite movies in a random order over the course of this month. I have reviewed every one of these films already, but I will now give new perspectives on them all. Every one of these films received a 10/10 scoring from me. Some of these reviews will contain spoilers so if you have never seen them before, I recommend that you read some of my previous reviews of the film that were spoiler free before reading on…
Hope you enjoy!
This is film #33 of the 48.
Initial Viewing Memories – I came across this documentary not long after it came out and was blown away by the premise and execution of it. The feeling has remained on every subsequent rewatch in the 7+ years since.
“When you know the animal and have a relationship with it. You know, that he’s not killing, because he’s a savage. He’s not killing, because he’s crazy or because he doesn’t know what he’s doing. He’s killing, because he’s frustrated and has aggravation. And when he’s… He has no outlet for it.” – Christopher Porter
Number of Times Seen – 5 (13 Sep 2013, 9 Feb 2014, 30 May 2016, 10 Apr 2019 and 20 Jan 2021)
Link to original review – Here, Here, Here and Here
Brief Synopsis – Documentary that explores the effect of keeping killer whales in captivity and the possible dangers of it all.
My Take on it – This is such a fascinating documentary that resonates so well. They do a wonderful job showing the way that Orcas have been treated while in captivity. At the same time, they are able to show us how the media and the ad campaign depict things in such a very different way. The interviews with many former trainers helps try and show how prevalent many of the “accidents” have been over the years and have been covered up by the corporation in an attempt to lessen the feel that these are recurring incidents. The way that this film takes a species that has been known for decades. The fact that this film has had such an effect on the parks featuring killer whales and other animals like them is quite an amazing accomplishment. This film’s premise is so simple, yet without seeing the documented proof of these mishaps and events over the course of so may years adds so much more to things and make them so poignant and impactful to watch. The short runtime of around 80 minutes suits this film so well and there are no parts of it that feel as if they drag along which helps enhance things so much. Highly Highly Recommended!
MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Ahead of release, SeaWorld mounted an aggressive preemptive public relations campaign attacking the veracity of Gabriela Cowperthwaite’s claims in a critique sent to fifty potential film reviewers – a move .. that garnered wide attention to what would otherwise have likely been a little seen documentary. The film’s release company (Magnolia Entertainment) President stated SeaWorld’s response as: ‘Frankly, never seen anything like it’ but was ‘the gift that keeps on giving.’ (From IMDB)
Rating – Oscar Worthy (10/10) (no change from original review)
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