One-sided? Yes. Superbly crafted? Most certainly. A practical joke or fantastically manufactured lie? Despite what many of the conspiracy theorists here would tell you, no, it is not. The campaigning elements of the film may not sit well with some people, but the facts are the facts, and there's simply no denying the emotional impact this film has. It is a prime example of constructed film-making with an overt agenda, filled with elements that at time make it feel like a heist movie or spy thriller. Having said that, there's no doubting just how real the horrors are. The annual slaughter of thousands of dolphins in an isolated cove near Taiji is sickening, heart-wrenching and unnecessary. After select dolphins are taken for the world's aquariums, the rest are left for brutal and barbaric butchering. I for one appreciate the risks taken by the film makers in attempting to get this story out, and I would place good money on this documentary being a front-runner for next year's Oscars. One of the marks of a powerful documentary is the response it generates from the hordes of nay Sayers. Some of the absurdly laughable comments listed here on IMDb are begging to be called out and exposed for the pathetic lies that they are. Conspiracy theory/lie no.1: The premise of dolphins being slaughtered en masse in Taiji is a complete fabrication. This belongs in the same volume of crackpot collections as those who deny the dangers of global warming. It is indeed real, and there is a plethora of information available to anyone with 3rd grade research skills. An article by Minoru Matsutani appeared in the Japan Times on Sept 23rd this year covering the issues raised in The Cove. The practice of mass dolphin slaying is indeed confirmed. Falsehood no.2: That the scenes from Taiji's infamous cove were in fact filmed in Ottawa. People will fabricate lies without any thought of at least giving the lie some credibility. There is no evidence to support this ridiculous claim. And having personally travelled along the east coast of Honshu in 2001, I can tell you that this is indeed filmed in Taiji. Falsehood no.3: Dolphins are not native to Japan. Wrong. Dead wrong. Bottlenose dolphins, for one, inhabit all warm temperate seas worldwide – including Japan. In fact, Mikura Island has a permanent colony of bottlenose dolphins. I'm utterly delighted that this film is stirring up so much emotion, as this is exactly what is needed to spark change. Most people in Japan aren't even aware of this atrocity, and had it not been for this film, I seriously doubt many of them would have ever known.
Crime / Documentary
Crime / Documentary
Using state-of-the-art equipment, a group of activists, led by renowned dolphin trainer Ric O'Barry, infiltrate a cove near Taijii, Japan to expose both a shocking instance of animal abuse and a serious threat to human health.
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April 21, 2019