Films: Eco-Pirate: The Story of Paul Watson

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Eco-Pirate: The Story of Paul Watson

Eco-Pirate: The Story of Paul Watson

Canada, 2011, 118 Minute Running Time
Genre/Subjects: Animals, Documentary, Environmental, Social Issues
Programs: Documentary Films, Environment in Focus
Language: English

DIRECTOR: Trish Dolman
Producer: Trish Dolman, Kevin Eastwood
Editor: Brendan Woollard
Screenwriter: Trish Dolman
Cinematographer: Todd Craddock, Ian Kerr, Kristian Olsen
Principal Cast: Paul Watson, Rex Weyler, Emily Hunter, Robert Hunter, Patrick Moore, Joji Morishita

Eco-Pirate unflinchingly documents Paul Watson’s 40-year commitment to saving the earth’s sea creatures from extinction. Director Trish Dolman follows the passionate activist from his early days as cofounder of Greenpeace to his recent violent confrontations with the Japanese whaling fleets in Antarctica.

Called the Rambo of the environmental movement, Watson rides the high seas like the hero of a historical romance, but his mission is very real. After he witnessed the agonizing death of a harpooned bull whale in 1975, he gathered a devoted crew and created the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, which travels the world searching for illegal whaling ships that operate under the guise of “research.” Notorious for his bold tactics and even bolder personality, Watson is not afraid to ram, sabotage, or even sink the lawbreakers—and they, in turn, have intentionally damaged his boats; one is now being held in Scotland in light of his alleged crimes against the tuna industry.

Not for the squeamish, Eco-Pirate uses daring camerawork to reveal the barbaric hunting practices of whalers, tuna fishermen, and hunters who club baby seals. But Dolman also incorporates archival footage and intimate interviews with Watson, his wife, Greenpeace cofounder Bob Hunter, and celebrity supporters as well as mortal enemies—such as a spokesperson for the Japanese whaling industry—to offer context for Watson’s obsession. The results are as urgent as they are compelling.
—JOEY PORCELLI

Sponsored by Consulate General of Canada in Denver, Queen Anne Urban Bed and Breakfast

In cooperation with Sea Shepherd Conservation Society


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