Monday, November 30, 2009

2009 - THE COVE the Japanese kill and eat Flipper and his relatives

This was a well reviewed documentary about the slaughter of dolphins in a small Japanese fishing village.  The approach taken in the documentary is to present it as a Mission Impossible type of thriller with the filmmakers sneaking into the killing cove to document the dolphin slaughter.  There are lots of exciting scenes involving the filmmakers planning their caper, being harassed by the local police force, sneaking around and being threatened by the Japanese fisherman.  They also have cool high tech James Bondian gadgets to use in their mission.

The Japanese do not come off very well to put it mildly.  At times they almost seem like characters out of an old World War II movie.   The film's point of view is to stick with the heroic team documenting the dolphin slaughter.

But the film did not seem to engage me as emotionally as I thought it would.  The problem for me was the one sided presentation of the dolphin slaughter argument.  Sure this is a horrible thing to watch  but the questions being raised seem much more complicated than killing off Flipper and friends

Japan is known for having one of the healthiest diets and lifespans of any developed nation.  They certainly didn't get that way eating at McDonalds like we do in the good old United States. What about asking these fisherman to give up a way of life that has been ongoing for probably a long time?   THE COVE  doesn't want to touch any of those kinds of issues.  Too much complicated stuff to think about.  It's more interesting and fun to watch "the team" sneaking around with ominous and dramatic music playing in the background.  

Fun to pretend to be James Bond, less fun to make a complicated thought provoking film.

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