Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB.
Canada, 2006. SW Productions, Diatribe Pictures, Sharkwater Productions. Screenplay by Rob Stewart. Cinematography by Rob Stewart. Produced by Brian Stewart, Rob Stewart. Music by Jeff Rona. Film Editing by Michael Clark, Rob Stewart, Rik Morden, Jeremy Stuart.
You’ll think you’ve entered Grizzly Man territory at the beginning of this superb documentary when director Rob Stewart describes his beloved sharks as adorable lovely beings and not the evil, ugly monsters we’ve all considered them to be our whole lives. Give him a chance, however, and you’ll realize that he’s not a liberal nudnik divorced from reality but a dedicated animal rights activist whose childhood fascination with these perfect predators has led him to this project. Stewart traveled the world for a number of years, documenting sharks in their natural habitats as well as describing his own efforts as a fighter against their devastation. Politically impressive, inspiring and just plain beautiful, this magnificent film teaches many facts about sharks that most people don’t know, gives an illuminating look into the illegal activities of the shark-fin industry and features some of the most beautiful images (mostly shot by Stewart himself) that you’ll ever have the privilege to see (and if you can see it on the big screen, make sure you do). It’s an awe-inspiring piece of work by a filmmaker who was merely looking to bring attention to his cause and ended up creating a masterpiece in all respects.
Toronto International Film Festival: 2006