Eco-Pirate: The Story of Paul Watson

Directed by Trish Dolman

> > Apr 28 2011

Eco-Pirate: The Story of Paul Watson - Directed by Trish Dolman
By Robert Bell"If anyone thinks they're going to change the world by appealing to the morality of human beings, they aren't going to get very far. Human beings are not moral," says Paul Watson, the subject of Eco-Pirate and founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, which promotes, and engages in, direct action as a means of deterrent and law enforcement in issues of marine conservation.

Preferring animals to people, he uses aggressive tactics to save the whales (ramming whaling ships, engaging in chases, sabotaging vessels, etc.) rather than protests and passivity, something he equates with ineffectual pleading and lackadaisical posturing.

Trish Dolman's documentary details these justifications and his surprisingly sagacious cynicism quite candidly, also providing a timeline of Watson's career and activist mission statement while sharing interviews with various family members, colleagues and specialists in the field, giving a variety of perspectives on a controversial figure.

Progressively revealing factoids about the Canadian animal rights activist, such as his rift with Greenpeace in the '70s, when his less-than-passive tactics didn't gel with their blanket non-violent ideologue, Eco-Pirate works best when doling out exposition and sharing insights on marine life and whale intelligence. Some interesting notions come up along the way, like the necessity of the media to further a cause and the assertion that Watson is a single-minded egomaniac, but never find their place in the cohesive whole.

Despite having an abundance of onsite footage and extremely personal interviews, this dissection of a Canadian figurehead never finds its flow or footing. Interjections, such as Watson's callous disregard for family and spousal obligations, pop into the film unannounced, having no context with the organic narrative focus, then disappear without further mention.

Because the documentary moves in a linear fashion more so than a thematic one, the gradual building of character through astute editing and intentional juxtaposition is almost entirely absent. Since there is little focus or lasting impression, we're left floundering with a substantial amount of interesting, but partially disconnected, information.

It's a shame, since somewhere in here is an amazing film desperate to get out and examine not only animal activism, but also the psychology of solipsism and success.
(eOne)
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Paul Watson is an eco-terrist and a nut case who spend his high school years crying in class!!!
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I agree. He is a terrorist and hates his countrymen, Canadians, their goverment and all those who make their living from the sea despite the fact he grew up on Canada's east coast.
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Hm, I've never known Paul to hate his countrymen. Just because he doesn't like the activities of certain Canadians (like sealing, wolf hunting, or the mismanagement of fisheries) doesn't mean that "he hates Canadians". I don't like the ignorance of your post, but that doesn't mean I hate all the other people who live wherever you're from. As for calling him a terrorist, that's incredibly foolish to toss that term around so casually.
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We need to change our bad habits. As a teacher guides you at school Paul is guiding us in life . We were able to make a choice and we picked him. Paul's credentials are strong, he is dedicated where as I'm not wanting to risk my comforts he has wagered everything even his family has to take a back seat.
What are you people thinking when you throw stones? We are an insane society we need to live in balance . Its ok to make a living from the sea just dont rape it to a point where we cant make a living at it. Then what?
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Paul Watson does not have any credentials whatsoever. He's a guy who owns a boat. He was not elected. He has no authority to do what he does. Like it or not, whaling conducted by the Japanese is perfectly legal. What deckhand Watson does is not. He's on Interpol's list for a reason. And he doesn't do anything in the name of conservation. His two big money makers are seals and whales - specifically minke whales. Both can and are being harvested sustainably. The tactics used by deckhand Watson are dangerous. Leaving a boat stranded in the SO is very dangerous to that crew. Throwing a dangerous acid (butyric acid is NOT rotten butter) at people is also very wrong. Oh, and let's not forget the racism that fuels his campaigns. He named his last boat Bridgette Bardot for goodness sakes. 5 convictions for racism-related crimes and deckhand Watson has no problem using her name for his cause. At least he's finally accepted there's no point in hiding the racist nature of his organisation.
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"no authority to do what he does"...there we see the blatent ignorance popping through,check up on the UN World Charter for Nature(1982) mate(especially read paragraph24 please,right at the end!),an EC ratified constitutional LAW,the reason why you dare not call Captain Watson a terrorist or pirate with an illegal implication as it would just make you look a foolish ranting unknowing idiot! http://www.un.org/documen...
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Watson is a media confection of his own making. He has no interest in animal welfare or in conservation. He craves attention at any cost and uses the cheapest and easiest means to obtain it. If you care for the planet do not allow yourself to be hoodwinked by this narcissistic charlatan.
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