I thought about titling this: Why do the Japanese hate Dolphins? But I changed my mind.
The award winning documentary “The Cove” was released or rather premiered, barely, in Tokyo Japan yesterday, Wednesday. It was originally not going to be allowed into the Tokyo international film festival but due to immense international pressure it made it in….barely. Just barely. Disclaimers were all over. Nobody was connected with it. The audience was protected from reporters. Nonsense.
This is a documentary shot in Japan by foreigners, some of it shot in a clandestine manner, to capture footage of the slaughter of dolphins in Taiji Japan. You can read more about it here on Japan today they wrote a pretty decent article about the premiere.
Apparently a lot of people in Japan took this as a form of “Japan Bashing”. Interesting. When the film Super Size Me came out in Japan in 2005 EVERYONE I know went to see it. It played at every theater. Nobody missed it. Yet nobody went around crying, in America or Japan, about it being considered “America Bashing”. This goes for films like Bowling for Columbine and Religulous, both of which are well liked by every Japanese person I have spoken to about them. Its simply another case of Japan insisting that the world is against them, and that they are somehow, mystically, victims. They got the bombs back in WW2 and since then, anything before, or after is irrelevant. They are victims.
This film and the reaction to it by the Japanese makes sense. Is slaughtering dolphins cool? Nope. The meat is toxic and horrible. Dolphin meat is not even consumed by average Japanese people.
It being “cultural” is silly. I understand culture….but really…watch the movie. It is not ok. I found that MANY of the Japanese people supporting the Dolphin “industry” continually made comments to the effect of ” Americans think Dolphins are cute, well Americans and Westerners eat Beef…and that comes from Cows, and in Japan we think Cows are cute.” My Japanese friends eat more beef than me in the form of YAKINIKU…the Korean dining experience where one cooks their own beef on a grill. Its huge in Japan, several of these at every station. Cows are not sacred in Japan.”Kobe Beef” anyone?
I think the point of this film is the informational aspect. Its good to notice how intense and keen the people there (In Taiji Japan and in Roppongi Hills at the film festival) were to KEEP MEDIA OUT. They KNOW what they are doing is not good. This is what all that anger and secrecy is about.
What are your thoughts?
MARCH 10 2010 UPDATE!
COVE WILL BE SCREENING IN JAPAN AGAIN.
If you like this try these:
|Japanese Donut Heads||Cute vs Sexy||The best Star Wars behind the scenes yet||Making Friends in Japan||The architectural greatness of Watanabe-San|