capturing & showing orcas is wrong

Jon Dorgan


Blackfish, by Gabriela Couperthaite, successfully shows that capturing and using orcas for entertainment is wrong and hurtful by using stock footage of them hurting and/or killing trainers and interviews with experts.

Defining The Purpose

Blackfish covers Sea World and their orcas. The main whale it focuses on is Tilikum. The whale that killed Dawn Brancheau, one of Sea World's most experienced trainers, as well as a part time worker from Sealand. The documentary showcases that capturing orcas is wrong and harmful to the whales and others through stock footage.

Stock Footage

The picture below shows a shot of one of the incidents at Sea World used as stock footage. The trainer was performing an act and was then crushed by a whale while riding another. This showed that they can be dangerous, weather they mean to or not. Another example was when a trainer was continuously dragged under water by an orca. Luckily he was an experienced scuba diver, so he knew what to do and kept calm until it let go. This showed that while he probably had a relationship with the whale, it still attacked him. The last piece of stock footage I'm going to talk about is one that showed whale on whale violence. One orca rammed another and killed it from internal bleeding, showing the tension from captivity. All of this happened due to captivity and being showcased for entertainment.
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Interviews With Experts

The other major technique used was interviewing experts and ex trainers. The below shows one talking about the flopped over dorsal fin. In captivity a few whales have them. In the wild none have them. Another interview revealed that captive orcas only lived to about 45 years old, while they have the same lifespans as humans in the wild. The last interview ill talk about was with a researcher from across the street from Sealand (where Tilikum was originally on display and killed a girl). He stated that captivity is what more than likely led to some form of psychosis. Thus providing reason with the out lashes from the whales.
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This film made me feel sorry for the whales and their trainers. As well as angry with Sea World for essentially torturing them. The whales in the wild never attack humans, live considerably longer and are better off in everyway. I feel sorry for the trainers because some died, and the others were lied to in the name of making money. The trainers actually cared for the animals and wanted to make a difference in their lives. I'm glad they are ceasing the orca shows soon.