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The Whale Watcher: Barfing About Blubber

9 mins 11 mths

Watching The Whale I was struck by several insights into the issues raised by this film. Firstly, by how un-American this movie was. Where were all the beautiful people? American celluloid and TV is, generally, characterised by a smug self-confidence with everybody sensing that they are the bee’s knees. The Whale watcher: Barfing about blubber. Holding up a mirror to a nation with a massive obesity problem is not normal fare on American screens. The clever use of intertextuality with that god awful American novel Moby Dick called attention to the theatrical roots of this production. The play/movie grappled with those age old American themes so densely inculcated within Moby Dick. God, religious belief, and questions of morality fill the pages of the great American novel. If you have ever attempted to read Moby Dick, the actual white whale is rarely sighted within its pages, rather Melville subjects readers to endless tracts on earnest searches for meaning within the Christian paradigm. It is a book that tries too hard to be morally deep and meaningful.

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