The Animals Film

The Animals Film

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Animals Film is the classic feature documentary film about the exploitation of animals, directed by Victor Schonfeld and Myriam Alaux, and narrated by Oscar-winner Julie Christie.

The film had its world premiere in the 1981 London Film Festival which was followed by widespread criticial acclaim in major media. Leading critic Alan Brien in The Sunday Times wrote: “The most impressive film maudit, possibly too hot to handle, is Victor Schonfeld’s The Animals Film, a polemical onslaught, stuffed with footage never before shown, and a wealth of newly-shot material often taken undercover, which documents…mankind’s degradation, exploitation, and often pointless torture, of the creatures who share our planet. He proves, beyond contradiction, that this behaviour is not just random or personal but part of our organised society, with drug companies, government departments, scientists, military authorities, factory farmers, university research laboratories, for their own selfish ends, for profit in money or prestige. I do not know when I have come out of a screening so moved by the power of the cinema as a medium to transform the entire sensibility of an audience.”

The Animals Film offers a still unsurpassed, comprehensive survey of the exploitation of animals in modern societies, including the uses of animals in factory farming, as pets, for entertainment, in scientific and military research, hunting, etc. Additionally, the film profiles the ideas and activities of the international animal rights movement. The film is laced with secret government footage as well as cartoons, newsreels and excerpts from propaganda films, and has an original music score composed by Robert Wyatt (released simultaneously as an LP,) plus the song “Mind” by Talking Heads which opens the film.

After high profile film festival screenings around the world, The Animals Film was released in cinemas in Britain, Australia, Germany, the USA, and other countries, and was then broadcast on a variety of television networks. The British network, Channel Four, transmitted the film during the Channel’s third night on air in November 1982. It caused uproar at the time, in part because Channel 4 broadcast a two hour version of the film shorn of seven minutes of its concluding sequence. The original 136 minute film released in cinemas had been approved with no cuts by the British Board of Film Censorship, but the Independent Broadcasting Authority instructed Channel 4 that certain scenes in the film could ‘incite crime or lead to civil disorder.’ [1] Jonathan Porritt and David Winner write that, with over one million viewers, the screening is regarded as “an important moment in the growth of public awareness of animal exploitation.”[2] Channel Four screened it again during its Banned series in 1991.

In 2007 a 25th anniversary edition DVD of The Animals Film was released with a new director’s cut, via Beyond the Frame. In 2008 the British Film Institute released a fully remastered DVD, in the UK, incorporating both the original uncensored cinema version and the more recent director’s cut.

In 2010 the BBC World Service is broadcasting Animals & Us, a new global radio documentary series presented by Victor Schonfeld, in which Schonfeld questions why so little has changed for animals since he made The Animals Film.

Brown Dog affair · Britches · Cambridge University primates · Pit of despair
Silver Spring monkeys · Unnecessary Fuss
Behind the Mask (2006) · Earthlings (2006) · Peaceable Kingdom (2004) · The Animals Film (1981)
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Serbia: Serbia Ignores Its Legislation, Policy of Killing Animals After Just 3 Days. EU What Are You Doing About It ?

Information just in from Serbia:

This morning on local TV it was said that dog catchers got 6 800 000 dinars and that they will catch dogs , keep them for 3 days and kill them.

After all meetings and promises that they will neuter and all, again the same story, what to do, they obviously don’t care for law, EU and no one !

SAV Comment – this information has today (05/01/10) been sent to the EU.