The Cove: Award winning docudrama to save the dolphins
Must-see award-winning documentary The Cove stirs up dark waters around dolphin capture and slaughter.
Action-packed dolphin doc The Cove follows activists as they attempt to infiltrate a highly guarded cove in Taji, Japan where more than 20,000 dolphins a year are caught and killed for their mercury contaminated meat (often passed off as whale meat), then fed to Japanese school children.
While most dolphins caught in Taji are slaughtered for meat, the "best" specimens are sold for upwards of $150,000 to dolphin training facilities for use in captive dolphin performances in aquariums and theme parks all over the world.
The Cove crew is made up of an unlikely assortment of movie professionals, scientists, deep divers and former dolphin trainer Ric O'Barry, who caught and trained the dolphins for the '60s TV show Flipper. O'Barry now regrets his role in sparking the dolphin craze in North America and has been a dolphin activist since the '70s. As he puts it, after you see The Cove you may never buy a ticket to a captive dolphin performance at an aquarium again.
O'Barry joined forces with filmmaker Louis Psihoyos and the Oceanic Preservation Society to uncover the truth about what's really going on in the Taji cove and why it matters to everyone in the world.
Forced to film illegally, the Cove team used high-tech surveillance equipment planted by free-divers under cover of night to capture the events in the Taji cove. The action is powerful, disturbing and emotional as the team attempts to expose the dolphin harvest and avoid arrest by Japanese officials.
Part heist movie, part action aventure, part expose, the film raises many troubling questions; not the least of which is why we treat our oceans as dumping grounds. Why are Japanese officials allowing the sale of mercury contaminated meat? Why have international environmental groups ignored this issue? How have the International Whaling Commission and the Japanese government covered up the massacre of hundreds of thousands of dolphins?
And finally, The Cove poses the question of why humans, who seem to hold dolphins in such high esteem as intelligent, sentient beings, would support a multibillion dollar industry that exploits dolphins?
While The Cove can't answer all of these questions immediately, the film has opened the door for awareness of the Taji dolphin slaughter, and O'Barry and Psihoyos firmly believe that their film and the groundswell of support following it will shame the Japanese government into ending the Taji cove slaughter.