“Trophy”: the sad story of Cecil the Lion is only a little of it

Trophy”, directed by Christina Clusiau and Shaul Schwarz, from The Orchard, aired on CNN Films Sunday night January 14, and treated us to breathtaking African safari scenery.

It also presented self-serving rationalizations of poachers and commercial hunters in Africa.

There is a basic argument that killing wild animals makes the native villagers safer.  There is the more sophisticated argument that if you limit legal hunting of animals, the illegal poaching will go up. That sounds a little like legalizing drugs, where libertarian arguments seem to make sense.  Much of the film shows a commercial auctioneer and land manager (John Hume) who says he is protecting animals from illegal poaching, but he will stay in business only as long as he makes money. At the end, the film tells us that Hume has won his case.

There is also a “religious” argument about man’s dominion over the animals (and the speaker denies evolution).

The film opens focusing on rhinoceros tusks, and soon move to elephants, where the world population has shrunk by orders of magnitude.

During the last part of the film, the sad story of the 2015 “accidental” killing of Cecil the Lion, by a Minnesota dentist, is covered.

Name: “Trophy”
Director, writer:  Christina Chusiau, Shaul Schwarz
Released:  2017
Format:  1.85:1
When and how viewed:  CNN, 2018/1/14
Length:  108
Rating:  PG-13
Companies:  The Orchard, CNN Films
Link:  CNN 

(Posted: Sunday, January 14, 2018 at 11:30 PM EST)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *