basilmemories: (Failgun is Fail)
basilmemories ([personal profile] basilmemories) wrote2010-10-25 12:54 am

Documentaries and more then a little facepalming.

I consider myself a media masochist, I'll watch things that will mess with my emotions just so I'll know more about the topic, or even to see how the other side of a debate feels. Most of these documentaries are usually the ones like "Flow", "The corporation", "This film has not been rated", and "Shoah". Films recommended to me through my friends, or I hear something interesting about them and take a look. Sadly it's hard to share these things with my other friends because when the films get taken down, people don't re-upload them. Everyone wants to make sure the camrip of an action movie is online, but fuck movies like "SICK: The Life & Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist" (which I'm also trying to find a copy of).

But other films like "Earthlings" (which tries to make a point about animal cruelty, but gets bogged down in PETA-esque rhetoric) are on the other side of the fence. I don't agree with it, someone capslocks that if everyone watches this magical film that they'll UNDERSTAND!!!1 and if anything I watch it just to deconstruct their arguments better. In one of these cases a documentary called "Zoo" was passed along to me in an argument.


Zoo is about a case where a man died shortly after having sex with a horse, the environment he was in, and the aftermath of his death. It's very obviously a pro-Zoophilia film from the start, and really it doesn't do much other then make me headdesk endlessly. Everything from the camerawork, to the pacing, to the information presented in the film, to the order in which events are displayed... just fail in their delivery.

The first thing you will notice is that this film is very pretty. You'd think this would be difficult for a movie about a man's death via perforation of his colon, but it is. Part of this is because the film doesn't do much to connect the overlaying audio track and what's being shown on screen. People are talking about selling off their animals, a farmer cleans a barn like he was doing earlier before. A woman talks about how she was comforted by her horse, the camera pans over a herd of horses at night. At the five minute mark I jokingly used a line from Quest of the delta Knights and it was like the movie decided to call my bluff. It kept up the hazy, over-saturated filming that you normally have just for establishing shots for the entire film. Every single scene was either too dark, or like a high-gloss photography major's dream.

Another issue is just how much they dance around the events, explaining as little as possible in a non-linear fashion. The film is more about how the people involved are trying to prove that they were a normal group of friends in a normal, but close-knit community, and this was a horrible accident that occurred. If the average person sat down to watch this and didn't know about the Mr. Hands video, they'd have a hard time following the film. The pacing is abysmally slow, mainly because the subjects are focusing on how they feel about their community and the community at large. The dreamlike music and visuals don't do much to help this, either.

But lastly there is the overall message of the documentary. The only explanation this movie gives for about how not to repeat this accident is to "know your animal" and to not engage in activities with animals you don't have a "bond" with. There's no talk about things like "Hey uh, don't fuck anything that could kill you and don't fuck anything that you could end up killing, mmmkay?", even if they're swearing up and down that they truly love their animals and would never hurt them. In addition how the present the consent issue is that animals such as horses aren't trained to have sex with humans, it's just their instincts. They even say things like "if you stand out there long enough, you're gonna get bred". Now I sadly never got to achieve my tiny girl-self goal of having a pet horse, but I'm friends with horse owners and I like to think that I know a decent amount about dogs. So! I don't think I'm too far off base when I say that doesn't fly. Dogs, horses, and generally any animal that humans want to keep for a number of years are trained in one way or another. So even if you're not actively training your Shetland pony to give someone a blowjob, they're eventually going to pick up that humans are on the "to have sex with" list. If we're talking large animals then it means that some poor new owner might get mounted, or in the case of a smaller ones that it could die from being literally torn open from someone's penis. There are other things that could be hurting the animal in ways we don't know because, again, they can't exactly tell us.

In the end, I always view my squicks in the "your kink is not my kink (and that's okay)" light: As long as everyone's safe, can consent, and in their right minds the show is on. Even while things aren't exactly safe in edgeplay, people go into that knowing the risks. You can't show a dog or a chicken a medical chart of what could happen and sign an agreement between you two. The horse isn't going to respond to your safe word. A dolphin doesn't care about your dead-man switch. Yes we may one day breach the communication barrier and learn how to ask for consent, but if someone really loved their animal like that, wouldn't they wait until they day they could know for certain?

Tell me if I'm being close-minded here, but c'mon. "One whinny yes, two whinnys and a hoofstomp no" doesn't sound like consent to me.

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