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I See Films with Adam Fay

The Cove (2009)

The Cove….A Film with Real Porpoise

Good news for fans of the George Clooney, Brad Pitt led Oceans Eleven series, you can stop waiting for an Oceans 14 and get your heist movie fix in the most unlikely of places; The Cove.

Complete with elements of undercover espionage and nail-biting tension, The Cove plays less like a documentary and more like a gripping thriller. The difference is that this shit is real. All too real. So instead of leaving the cinema knowing George Clooney and co live happily ever after in imaginary Hollywood-land, The Cove may leave you feeling a mixture of clench-fisted anger and heartbreaking sadness.

It’s the story of a small Japanese fishing town with a dark secret. A secret they seem to want kept under wraps. Unfortunately for them, they didn’t bank on a team of activists led by dolphin trainer Ric O’Barry coming to town, complete with state of the art surveillance equipment and an intent on exposing just what it is that these people are going to such great lengths to hide in the dreaded area known as “The Cove”.

The journey we are taken on is both intriguing and depressing, both for the cruelty shown to dolphins, one of our planets most fascinating and intelligent creatures, but also the guilt felt by trainer Ric O’Barry, the man who used to train Flipper from the popular television show. His feelings of responsibility for how dolphins are treated these days as nothing more than show-ponies for the amusement of theme park crowds is crushing. This mans personal pain is a powerful and poignant subplot.

Like any documentary delivered with such blinkered urgency, The Cove has also suffered its fair share of critics, and I do admit that there is a feeling of hypocrisy in the film. We know what is happening to these defenseless dolphins is wrong, but the livelihood of not only the fisherman, but the entire community they belong to is ignored. I’m not saying what they are doing is right, but it would have been nice to see their point of view on it all. Not to mention a broadening of the theme to include the slaughter of cows, sheep, pigs and any other food-based livestock.

Hey, why should dolphins get all the focus? I’m just saying.

Beyond that, The Cove is seriously powerful film making and highly recommended.

By Adam Fay
Read more film reviews by Adam at http://iseefilms.wordpress.com

Pics: http://www.thecovemovie.com; http://www.adventure-journal.com; http://kawaiikakkoiisugoi.com

Watch the trailer…

The next documentary by OPS will be The Singing Planet.


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  1. I watched the Cove a few weeks ago, pretty disturbing and sad to see “us” just slaughtering the dolphins needlessly…really makes you question humanity, we’re doing all we can to end our run on this planet…

    Posted by LadyUmbrella | April 4, 2011, 7:14 am

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