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The Cove review

Flipper fans steer clear of this shocking dolphin doc

If The Cove isn’t in the running for next year’s Best Doc Oscar, there’s something terribly wrong with this world. Gripping exposé, harrowing horror-thriller and devastating agitprop, it takes us to “a little town with a big secret”.

Every year in a pretty cove in the Japanese fishing settlement of Taiji, thousands of terrified dolphins are driven in from open water and savagely massacred.

We know this thanks to activist dolphin-whisperer Ric O’Barry, who trained these remarkable mammals for cult ’60s TV show Flipper – until one of them died in his arms after a tortured existence.

Having dedicated his life since to freeing captive dolphins everywhere, O’Barry leads a team of champion free-divers and ILM experts on an Ocean’s Eleven-style raid, taking on a murderous government cover-up and local fishermen to plant hidden cameras inside the cove.

What happens next will wrench and rouse you.

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