Blackfish, a documentary directed by Gabriela Cowperthwaite is a documentary about a imprisoned killer whale that has taken several lives of people and that disgreements surrounding the sea-world and talking about the life of a trainer and the whale and at the same time focusing on the sea-world problem that shocked the world.
The documentary talks about the killer whale’s intention and how they were acting up in seaworld that will normally not occur in their natural habitat. This a problem that was growing to be aware, the trainer’s relationship with the whales and the important bits that teaches us all about the whale cultures of how intelligent they appear to be. The filmmaker of this documentary uses interviews, graphic depiction, and music to highlight the emotions of what took place during the sea-world and the surrounding dissagreement with the trainers, whales, and holding a marine animal captive. Using the controversy, the filmmaker knew how to draw in the viewers using these three chosen elements to keep the people at the edge of their seat especially when it contained a tragic story heard in a creative tone. The rest of the findings will highlight the elements found in the films and its effectiveness in helping the film achieve its profound effect.
The first element used in the film is interviews which shows human emotions and reactions towards the the events of the trainers, whales, and sea-worlds. Interviews are a great way of obtaining knowledge especially when someone is knowledgeable within that field and how can they can convey their expert opinion on the matter. The interviews were taken from trainers who are current or former, as well as many individuals in related matter to give their feedback in how a situation like this could be mitigated. From 16:56 to 18:01 of the documentary shows the inhumane treatment of Tilikum in how they put rakes shown in an interview with several people voicing on the matter. From 18:40 to 20:55 interview features visitors who were there at the event when the tragedy happened in how they give their reactions and story to the matter from a crowd point of view. This is effective since these people are well-spoken and delivered emotions that can make the audience think of the situation in the trainer, whales, and how the sea-world operates. Adding to that, it may a positive perspective in how one can see in this situation if they can do something that can make a good change.
The second element used in the film was graphic depiction which was what the tragedy was imagined by many of the ones hearing the controversy. The filmmaker used this element because upon hearing the story of the news, people were horrified with them imagining how the whale was the one responsible for the trainer’s death. With the media depicting it differently due to opposing sources, there were also clips shown in the documentary which shown imminent danger causing the viewers their heart to skip a beat or be extremely nervous and anxious. 11:13 to 12:24 shows the whales being trapped and being abused by specialised seaman involved by the sea-world owners for whale shows that takes place in sea-world. 44:55 to 45:38 shows a trainer without her spotter attempting to interact with the whales to self-train which led to her foot being dragged by the whale nearly killing her. They are effective in showing the mistreatment and the consequences when going through the matter. It shows a display of behavior not suited as a human being, and the other one shows a mis interaction with the trainer and whale in how things nearly went south.
The third and final element is the music used in the films to draw in the audience instead of them listening to a clip with the sounds coming from the interviewers. Filmmakers use music to enhance emotions and to determine what a viewer should feel or be amplified by the current scene. 17:05 to 18:07 plays a dramatic music when mentioning the captivity of the whales in how the interviewers gave their opinions upon it. 19:56 to 21:02 shows a grim emotional music when the ones being interviewed mentioning the trainer’s final moments with the whale and how the unfortunate incident took place. It was effective and appropriate to highlight the perspective and be amplified with the scene and the help of the music. The music gives remembrance to the scene and perhaps respect to the unfortunate situation.
The elements shown in the film which are interviews, graphic depictions and music were used by the filmmaker to deliver emotions to the viewers surrounding the controversial story with the trainer, whale, and the sea-world executives. Interviews are used like a way to obtain knowledge and perspectives on the matter from experts as well as their reaction that viewers can get out of it. Graphic depictions can shock viewers to the core since it shows the scene where a danger can happen to anyone or be shown evidence of a cause they should be aware of. Lastly the music intensifies the scene and pays homage to the ones affected by the tragedy as a respectful remembrance to the unfortunate incident. The documentary highlights an important perspective in the lives of whales and how they are handled in sea-world and a few special indications in their habitat and their strong bond and relationship with the trainors, how the tragerties affected the trainors and whales in diffirent prespectives.