This weeks readings focused primarily on activists using the means of video to address certain problems going on in the world. After reading about Paper Tiger and what that organization was doing in the world, it instantly reminded me of a documentary I saw in 2009 called, “The Cove,” directed by Louie Psihoyos. It was a film which analyzed and questioned dolphin hunting in Japan. The film, which won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, has the filmmakers secretly filming what is going on in Japan by using underwater microphones and high-definition cameras disguised as rocks. But the reason this film was made was because it was a call to action to stop mass dolphin killings, change Japanese fishing practices, and to inform and educate the public about risks and hazards of mercury poisoning from dolphin meat. The film went viral, all around the world when it came out, and the Japanese filed a lawsuit against the filmmakers for alleges inaccuracies. A grand debate was started after this film was released, a main one was “Westerners..kill and eat cows. Easterners eat Dolphins. What’s the difference?” And like video activism, it’s main goal is to start a grand debate.

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2 responses »

  1. palomapineda19 says:

    I like that you brought up The Cove as this documentary had a large impact on my view of dolphin hunting, and places like Sea World. As you noted, one of the biggest things that struck me was how the documentary was shot, and how the filmmakers secretly shot the hunting in Japan.

    One of the greatest powers of documentaries is the ability to bring up and spark debate, and works like The Cove as well as Blackfish really produced a shocking effect, and made me realize how deep the mistreatment of animals runs throughout the world.

  2. emacune says:

    Thanks for sharing this! Even though some documentaries present a skewed and inaccurate narrative, the fact that discussions are being started is very important. Hopefully then the skewed narrative can be corrected!

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