Thursday 1 August 2013


Blackfish is a documentary exposing the reality behind Seaworld and other marine entertainment parks. The film focusses on a large male orca that killed two trainers. Former Seaworld trainers talk about how they became disillusioned with the work, discussing issues relating to health and safety at work, lack of transparency and animal rights. There's also a lot of footage of the fatal accidents caused when orcas went bad and killed trainers at marine parks (in fact sometimes it felt like "When Killer Whales Attack!" rather than an animal rights expose.)

Most of the interviews emphasise the problems of working with animals that can be dangerous, rather than trying to explore in depth why these animals do in fact become dangerous. Orcas don't attack humans in the wild, so why do they do it in captivity? The footage speaks for itself in making the point that intelligent creatures such as orcas shouldn't be confined to small metal swimming pools nor should family groups be split up (watching and hearing mother orcas screaming when their babies are taken away is very distressing). Treating them in such ways, is it any surprise that they turn on their keepers to vent their frustrations?

This is a very powerful film, making the clear point that if we mistreat wild animals, then we can't be surprised when they turn round and take revenge. Orcas should live wild in the oceans with their family groups, not be caged in small pools and expected to jump when we tell them to. 

If you are concerned about this issue, you can pledge not to visit marine parks that use animals for entertainment.

Good news: India recently banned commercial dolphin entertainment.

Blackfish is showing at Edinburgh Filmhouse today only.

As ever, red text contains hyperlinks that take you to other webpages where you can find out more. 


dosankodebbie said...

I'm stunned.

The Weaver of Grass said...

It is awful that they are allowed to continue Juliet - and all in the name of profit whatever the owners might say. Thank goodness a lot of the terrible cruelty in circuses has died out in this country at least, although I will never forget looking out of my hotel window in Istanbul a few years ago and seeing a man walking down the street leading two brown bears on chains - terrible.

Bill said...

Astute observations, Juliet.

Ms Sparrow said...

I saw a Facebook ad today that compared it to confining human to a bathtub for 25 years. It makes me sick that so few people care about the terrible suffering of those creatures who share our planet.

RG said...

Tis indeed a sad situation. A great many Orcas were captured in the 1970's in Puget Sound, to the point that now the local Puget Sound "resident" pods are well protected but not thriving because so many of the reproductive males were captured or killed. The eldest in the local Pods is Granny - more than 100 years old. All the 80 plus local residents (and many of the transients) are identified and named and recognizable by most astute observers!

RG said...

,,, and I meant to add - Thank you so much for pointing this out and reviewing the film.

Crafty Green Poet said...

Hi Rabbits Guy - yes they showed the orcas being taken from Puget Sound so sad.

Ms Sparrow, yes that's a phrase used in the film, so terribly sad

Weaver - huge profits in many cases,

Little Miss Titch said...

so sad,but is is a reason why I don't go to these places any more,xx