31 July 2013


Title: Blackfish
Country: United States of America
Language: English
Year: 2013
  • John Hargrove
  • Samantha Berg
  • Mark Simmons
  • Carol Ray
  • Dean Gomersall
  • John Jett
  • Jeffrey Ventre
  • Dawn Brancheau
  • Dave Duffus
  • Howard Garrett
  • Eric Walters
  • Ken Balcomb
  • Steve Huxter
  • Christopher Porter
  • Corinne Cowell
  • Nadine Kallen
  • Lori Marino
  • Kim Ashdown
  • Estefania Rodriguez
  • Suzanne Allee
  • Mercedes Martinez

A documentary following the controversial captivity of killer whales, and its dangers for both humans and whales.

Blackfish is an interesting documentary about orcas or killer whales. It is specifically about how orcas are suffering when they are in captivity, and how their emotional and psychological distress may sometimes cause these killer whales to be a danger to humans.

I don't really like going to the animal shows like killer whale shows because it seems unnatural. I imagine I wouldn't like to be forced to perform to audiences for free, and this is basically what animals used in these shows do.

Blackfish talks about the unfortunate deaths of an animal trainer in Sealand of the Pacific in Canada on February 1991, another experienced animal trainer in SeaWorld in Florida, United States on February 2010, and another animal trainer in Loro Parque in Canary Islands, Spain on December 2009. There are also many incidents wherein several trainers are attacked by killer whales.

I think the companies are greatly responsible for these tragic incidents for not adequately addressing the needs of the killer whales.

I'm very suspicious about the top management in SeaWorld, primarily because their official statements are misinformation that it uses to justify the current state of the orcas in the company's care.

SeaWorld representatives proclaim that killer whales live for around 25 to 30 years, and orcas in captivity live longer than in the wild because the company provides veterinary care. However, research since the 1980s show that killer whales in the wild can live up to 60 years for males and up to 100 years for females.

SeaWorld representatives also say that about 25% of killer whales have a so-called 'floppy' dorsal fin, and this is caused by old age. According to scientists, the dorsal collapse happens to less than 1% of killer whales in the wild.

Regarding the incident in SeaWorld on February 2010, initial reports state that the animal trainer slipped in the pool and drowned. Later reports claim that the killer whale dragged the animal trainer down the pool through her ponytail.

Witnesses asserted that the orca latched on to the left arm of the animal trainer and dragged her to the pool. Meanwhile, SeaWorld expert witnesses declared that the killer whale in question was not aggressive, and a mistake by the animal trainer led to the event.