Blackfish: Seaworld vs Wildlife

Hello everybody! Today we have the controversial film about Sea World Blackfish.

BLACKFISH

DIRECTOR: Gabriela Cowperthwaite

GENRE: Documentary

YEAR: 2013

COUNTRY: United States

Notorious killer whale Tilikum is responsible for the deaths of three individuals, including a top killer whale trainer. Blackfish shows the sometimes devastating consequences of keeping such intelligent and sentient creatures in captivity.

Blackfish is definitely one of the more controversial documentaries (that doesn’t have to do with war) that I have seen in the past year. I didn’t know that animals were treated so little/badly when kept in captivity. This treatment adjusts their attitude and habits which can cause them to be much more aggressive. What I really liked about Blackfish is that it focused on only one main target, instead of attacking the company on different points and spreading themselves too thin. Also the pacing is very well done, as it spread from attack to attack almost flawlessly.

Blackfish, while one of the better documentaries I have seen this year, still has plenty of drawbacks. I felt that some of the interviewees were not experts at what they were talking about, and I felt it damaged their credibility. At least some of them were experienced enough as former Sea World trainers so they had first hand observation to the conditions the whales were being kept in. Why don’t they just retire Tilikum before he strikes again? They can’t retire him because he is their most profitable male whale (currently having 11 spawns) that’s why.

PROS:

  • Address an important problem.
  • Pacing
  • Structure

CONS:

  • Some of the interviewees had no knowledge of previous attacks.
  • Small amount of actual experts.

SCORE: 8.0 / 10

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