Global Visions Film Series: Whaledreamers

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Global Visions Film Series: Whaledreamers

Whaledreamers is written and produced by Julian Lennon who collaborated with screenwriter/director Kim Kindersley. The 2008 film has been described as a visually stunning passage of images of various indigenous peoples from around the world, with a focus on Australian aboriginal cultures and the diversity of ocean life linked to their cultural pathways.

Wahledreamers explores tribal differences and similarities in the ways in which coastal peoples view the sea and the magnificent life forms within it, including whales and dolphins. Produced in 2006, the film met with limited success in American theatres, but has had a tremendous impact on those who have seen it.

Whaledreamers is the result of an earlier effort titled People of the Whale, a documentary on the relationship between an indigenous Australian tribe, the Mirning, and whales and their co-existence. Unfortunately, in the mid-90s, funding for the continuation of the documentary was abandoned. However, in 2006, the concept was rejuvenated again by its original founders; Julian Lennon and Kim Kindersley.

This film, winner of eight International Film Festival Awards offers a rare glimpse inside the Mirning people, whose very culture was entirely based on whales’ existence. These majestic mammals are uncovered by an extensive amount of underwater footage and their role in mankind’s past and their essential place in our future. The filmmakers intend for viewers to work toward unification on Earth by embracing every living thing and recognizing their importance in the web of life.

The film accomplishes its mission by bringing together representatives from different tribes from around the world, whose cultural systems and beliefs vary greatly. Yet, as the gathering of diverse peoples unfolds, common ground is sought and results in discovering commonalities that hold the promise of unity to an ailing planet.

Julian Lennon is known as a philanthropist, director, producer, photographer, writer, musician, and, as John Lennon's son, the inspiration for three Beatles songs.

Review By Eriverto Vargas (UND Student), and Marcia Mikulak, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology UND

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