Earthlings review

This documentary has affected me. I am torn between telling people to watch Earthlings because it’s important for them to know this stuff, and telling people not to watch it because it is genuinely disturbing. I closed my eyes during many scenes in the movies and I wish I had closed them more because I am haunted by the images I saw.

This movie looks at the five things we use animals for: Pets, food, clothes, medical reseach and entertainment. It then goes on to show how each of these aspects causes massive amounts of suffering for the animals which have done nothing to deserve being treated like that.

We think that keeping animals as pets is good because the animals have a good life, but for every pet that has a good life, there are many more that suffer tremendously. The conditions which puppies, etc are ‘manufactured’ for pet shops are appalling. Many pets are badly treated by their owners, others are abandoned. The lucky ones are euthanised, the rest are killed in less humane ways or suffer along until they die from exposure, accident or illness.

A lot of time is spent looking at the conditions in which animals are kept to fatten them to size for us to eat. It is absolutely criminal. Then they look at how these animals are slaughtered, a process which, by no stretch of the word, can ever be called humane. Watching how these people treat the animals is sickening, absolutely devoid of empathy or conscience. I had tears rolling down my cheeks as they showed the Japanese executing their annual slaughter of dolphins.

I didn’t realise that the meat we eat comes from different animals to the leather we wear. The slaughter of animals for leather is even less regulated than for food and it is sickening to see how these animals are abused. I watched them rip the skin off a fox while it was still alive, it was sitting there looking at itself, wondering what had just happened. All of this suffering so that someone can wear a fur jacket, sick.

I had no idea that millions of animals are abused and killed every year in the name of medical research. To see what they do to these animals is to see man at his basest level. It is no wonder that man is continually performing atrocious acts against his fellow man.

Entertainment from animals was also an eye opener. Circus animals are treated with immeasurable cruelty, zoo animals suffer in captivity and thousands of animals suffer and die for entertainment in bull fighting rings and rodeo rings.

I contemplated walking out of this documentary several times, but decided to stay to the end because I believe that we need to be aware of the impact of our choices. What we eat, what we wear, the products we buy and the entertainment we choose to watch can all lead directly to the extreme suffering of many innocent animals.

Today, when I ordered my lunch, I ordered the vegetarian option because after watching Earthlings, I couldn’t stomach the idea of eating meat produced through all that suffering. If the movie can have this impact on everyone that watches it, then it has done a good thing.

Earthlings is showing at the Labia at 12pm and 4pm every day until Friday. Read more in my post about the movie. You can also read about vegetarianism in my post on the topic.


11 responses to “Earthlings review”

  1. “I contemplated walking out of this documentary several times, but decided to stay to the end because I believe that we need to be aware of the impact of our choices.”

    Pretty insightful stuff, Dax. So few people today are aware of what their personal choices are doing to themselves or other people, let alone animals. Such ugliness in the world, but your review offers some beautiful wisdom for people who are becoming more conscious and compassionate.

  2. After watching this movie, I truly feel ashamed to be a human. The unnecessary pain and suffering we inflict every day on non-human animals is truly diabolical.

    I got through the first 4 chapters (pets, food, clothing, entertainment) without too much peaking between the fingers, but the last chapter on vivisection and medical and military experimentation I could only bear to watch with my ears…I mistakenly believed that the numbers used in experimentation over the last few decades had decreased through public awareness and protestation – how wrong I was.

    Please see this movie. It is well made and has enough beautiful imagery to relieve the traumatic parts. The Moby soundtrack is very appropriate, without being overly sentimental or dramatic.

    Don’t be afraid that after seeing this you will have to dramatically alter your life and turn vegan (although this would be the ideal!),but just be more aware of the products; food, medicines, cosmetics, clothing you choose.

    You will be a better Earthling for it!

  3. Also went to see the movie on your rec. It is harrowing and makes its point very forcefully, I felt pretty sick most of the way through – it’s like an animal snuff movie. It is also poorly made in the sense of being clumsily didactical and offering very slipshod logic, which is a pity. I also grew weary of all the quotable quotes. I think the movie could have been far stronger and more effective if made by (even) Michael Moore. Interestingly, the film opens with the idea that its news will be ignored, then reacted to with anger, then accepted. There were three of us in the room, so I think the ignoring is happening before the viewing…

  4. I agree, it wasn’t the best documentary in terms of quality, but it certainly gets the point across. However they package it, I think people will still be reluctanct to see it. Hence the empty cinema for your viewing and for mine.


  5. Just reading about it sickens me, will probably not watch it.
    I’ve been vegan since 2007 and will never go back, I’m a lot healthier since I got rid of ALL the animal products in my diet.

  6. Such a powerful film! I hope we can stop somehow all this insanity soon. There are a couple of films I want to share with all of you who want to change our world a bit:

    “Poisoned Waters” FRONTLINE

    “Change your fuel, change the world FUEL”

  7. Hi Al

    Thanks for these links, I had a quick look and they both look like very interesting documentaries. I will definitely try and get my hands on them.

  8. Your welcome Dax,

    Hey my fellow earthlings I’m pretty sure you saw the film: “Super size me” it is about the consumption of fast-food in America.
    Here is another link for some good video clips
    Those films are about going green, but Earthlings is more explicit, crude, and dramatic. This is the only way to open our eyes, face the truth and do something about it…

  9. Sky Torres

    I just wanted to add I am 18 years old and have been vegan for over 9 years now. I am so proud of myself because I can
    now look at my hands and assure myself they have no blood
    on them.

    I saw this documentary last night and could not even finish
    watching it because all it did was make me so angry.
    It made me want to just stab all those disgusting people in
    the film hurting those poor animals.
    It brought out a lot of emotions in me and it was so hard to
    watch especially towards the end.

    Remember, you CAN make a difference.
    A little sacrifice is all it takes.

  10. I’m very glad that you watched this documentary in it’s entirety, Dax, and even more so that you’ve given it this review.

    Thanks for trying to help people make the connection.

  11. Thanks for the post! This film is amazing and chocking… I found the entire movie Earthlings in Art Days, here is the link!