Tuesday, 29 January 2008


So glad that Gill Divers organised a screening of Sharkwater at Lido last night. Nearly thought I wouldn't be able to catch it before Shaw stopped screening. Kudos to Jacki and his staff! *round of applause* Know you guys were a tad bit worried about filling up the cinema theatre since news only went out on last Friday and the movie screening just last night! More tribute to the crew of Gill Divers for making the screening all the more sweeter by actually doing a 1-for-1 "promo" for friends and friends of friends by actually paying for one ticket for every pair!! Thanks to peizee for the heads up about the news, so that not just me but pig, ginger and their friend benefited and managed to catch this. *bows*

Pretty cool seeing a rather vast range of people settling in for the show. Even bumped into a couple of labbies for a quick chitchat, and was pleasantly surprised when orang_asli appeared at our row. After settling in, after a quick advertisement for Jay Chou's latest movie, off we went to the blue. Liked the presentation style of the facts and the narration and flow of Rob Stewart's experience and stories when preparing this. Not so much the ecological facts that were giving an insight and something new when talking about sharks fin but the starkness of how much the demand for shark's fin soup is driving the market. The realness and seriousness of mafia linked industry, the danger in recording these events, the grisliness of the butchering of sharks, the heartwrenchingness of seeing leatherbacks, sailfish, etc. being caught on longlines....

The interview snippets of the guy from Rabbit Brand Shark's Fin (yesh, they put his name and company up in the film) really made me ashamed of being part of the culture that actually encourages the lucrative shark fin's trade... Not that there's any perfect culture/heritage per se, but how and when do we decide that it's time to discard unsupported beliefs and oldwives' tales for something greater. Time to throw away some of the "old" and obscure for the sake of our children? Being a divejunkie, despite my fear of sharks and to a greater degree, snakes, I would still be greatly saddened if my children or my children's children and so on are robbed of the chance to see these pretty fabulous creatures that have survived millions of years. Especially my personal favorite behemoth of the great blue. The whale shark (Rhincodon typus). Pity that more wasn't done up on the TW habit of fishing these understudied gentle giants for not just their humongous fins but also their meat. There's a reason why whale sharks (as I like to call them, jinbei from their Japanese name ジンベイザメjinbeizame) are also known as tofu sharks to the Taiwanese....

Being largely more of a pacifist than an activist, I kinda have mixed thoughts on the Sea Shepherd way of doing things. I do see the point that they are kinda trying to make that since the world is lacking a Mithril-like organization to monitor and regulate fisheries in international waters, we are really driving our seas down the route of the dodo. Yet, being self-proclaimed vigilantes, would they be contributing to the friction rather than elevating problems? Yar, I know that this aspect of conservation is really really really effie, but I still like to try and persuade (aka psycho) people rather than ramming something down their throats (or their boats as in the case of the film). I applaud their aims and their singlemindedness yet I really wonder at their methods.... Upsetting governments (no matter how corrupted you may think or are convinced they are) is probably not the best strategy for nature.....

More reviews here:
Blue Eden
Letter from Public
I guess what we all have in common is the thoughts on the silliness of killing sharks, as well as Rob Stewart being great eye-candy. It does help an environmental cause when it's champion (1) know what he/she is doing, (2) is charismatic/has screen presence, AND (3) is good enough to drool on. ^^ I know I have found my second nature hero after Sir David Attenborough. Someone who is willing to spread the message, to educate and enlighten others in hopes that we can and WILL change our ways for the better.

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