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James Franco Ponders 'Blackfish' In Vice.com Editorial

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The current article you are reading does not reflect the views of the current editors and contributors of the new Ecorazzi

The documentary, “Blackfish,” has been opening people’s eyes about the treatment of orcas in captivity, specifically, at SeaWorld, since its release. Actor, James Franco shared some of his deep thoughts about the film in his Vice.com editorial titled, “The Dark Appeal of ‘Blackfish.'”

In his piece, he posits that the main reason for Blackfish’s success is that most people enjoy the shock and awe of animal attacks on tape.

“When one watches the National Geographic Channel, what do we want to see? If you’re honest, the answer is something like “I want to see the f**king lion chase down the antelope and tackle it and rip it apart, piece by piece, because I too am an animal. Deep within, I have these tendencies—to destroy things and savagely take what I want, when I want—but society keeps me in check.” If you go deep down, past humanitarianism and the mistreatment of animals, this is the reason the film is so compelling,” he writes.

“It’s like reality TV set in the Roman Coliseum, achieving the convoluted  experience of inducing pity for the animals, outrage against the institution that seems to be mishandling these majestic creatures, all the while stealthily building anticipation for the scenes where we get to see the horror of beast on human attacks,” he further elaborates.

And even though he admits that, were he to buy a ticket to an orca show, that he would be sitting in the bleachers “morbidly hoping” for a human vs. nature spectacle, Franco says the documentary is full of “unpleasant but equally compelling stuff,” and has a clear animal rights message. Despite the back-and-forth tone of his article, he does clearly question the sanity behind the idea of lumping these massive, intelligent creatures together into tight spaces.

“…Is it that crazy to think that giant, highly intelligent marine mammals should not be placed in captivity? They live in familial units that are arguably tighter than human families, and they even speak in their own language and dialects. So, when individuals from different pods are mixed together and sandwiched into tight performance pools, things can rapidly become tense and hostile.”

Read Franco’s full article on Vice.com and let us know what you think.

Related on Ecorazzi:

+Kevin Smith ‘Haunted’ By What He Saw In ‘Blackfish’

+Aaron Paul on ‘Blackfish’: “Everyone Should See This”

+Trace Adkins Passes on SeaWorld Gig Due to Negative Publicity

Photo credit: cinemafestival / Shutterstock.com

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  • Lauren Ann Read Koslow

    Ecorazzzi’s Facebook comments on this post are pretty negative. Everyone is entitled to their opinions; I admire James’s desire to contemplate human psychology despite my disagreement on the notion of an affinity for violence. Just as one wouldn’t write off their friends & family for not sharing one’s vegan views, I see no reason why someone would decide to no longer admire an actor he or she otherwise has appreciated for an issue such as this.

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