Earthlings - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Earthlings Reviews

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Cinema-Maniac
Super Reviewer
July 19, 2014
Earthlings chronicles the day-to-day practices of the largest industries in the world, all of which rely entirely on animals for profit. The documentary is not an easy one to watch especially it footage of animal cruelty. Never once shying away from showing graphic footage which can speak for itself even when taken out of context. Scenes showing factory farms, slaughterhouses, hunting, bullfights, puppy mills, and primates being used in head injury experiments will shock those who value all forms of life equally. These scenes aren't easy to watch and powerful enough get it point across towards viewers without ever needing to complete the film. By letting the sometime graphic footage play out in its entirety it will challenge what the viewer is capable of stomaching. The footage shown in its "Food" segment can make anyone unaware of what goes on inside a slaughterhouse think differently about what they eat. Its most haunting scene is at a fur farm. A skinned animal, perhaps a fox, lies glistening with blood and white fat and muscle. The creature is still alive, lifting her skinless head and blinking at the camera. Those few seconds gets across the horrific emotion that this skinned fox is feeling, and connect a thought to the viewer of seeing its own species brutally murdered for our very own livelihood without ever telling us.

How Earthlings sets up it proposition is by it's opening. By elaborating how over the years there existed racism, sexism, and speciesism. This is the idea of assigning different values or rights to members depending on their species, or in other words favoring one's own species. It acknowledges its purpose, in that it is demonstrating how animals have come to serve humankind. Never does it compare these crimes in being directly connected to one another as much it attempts to draw parallels that drive those action. Instead of making a direct comparison to the Holocaust it decides to make correlations; the most significant relation being both are caused by humans with power abusing those without power. What nonsense right? There's no way the Holocaust is similar to...well now that I think about it there's truth to that. The target isn't a single race or religion beliefs in this case, but instead an entire species which is being murdered for another specific purpose. Tackling different aspects of the subject in five segments; pets, food, clothes, entertainment, and scientific research. Each receive different amount of screen time and each use a similar tactic to get their point across. Drawing parallel to a crime alongside footage of that goes along with said segments.

As much Earthlings is consider the definitive animal rights film by animal rights organizations, much like PETA efforts, their delivery can be heavy handed and some aspects flimsy. One of the major flimsy aspects are it statistics on how many animals are killed by humans. Being blown over proportion to the point that makes you questioned how in the world a particular specie shown in the film hasn't become instinct. These statistics go into the billions which holds true for fish, but with other animals just accepting the facts becomes a mind game of what's true and fabricated. There is truth to be found in what's it saying, but exaggerating on the facts partially fail to inform the audience and instead make them question more if the information given to them is true inspite of the footage being played. Another issue is the film becomes very heavy handed in it delivery towards the end. The film last ten minutes beats the "animals suffered for our livelihood, man is bad" point over the head that is gives off an anti-human vibe. Despite claiming that all lifeforms consider Earthlings and should not contain the mindset of speciesism. The music by Moby sets a somber tone without being intrusive, and the narration by Joaquin Phoenix is very matter of fact. Though the script at times seems a bit heavy-handed, even quoting Shakespeare's King Lear at one point, Phoenix's delivery is calm and measured, in contrast with the visual horrors unfolding on-screen.

Earthlings graphic footage of animal cruelty and the degree it shows it too warrant the content in this film is not for everyone. For that it message delivery becomes cloudy, but never is it point ever loss. It certainly heavy handed towards the final minutes, but even before reaching the end it's capable of persuading.
July 11, 2014
Eye opener. 4.2 stars
June 11, 2014
the fix to this problem should be one of man kinds greatest achievements... Hopefully one day we can look back and talk about these gruesome days in history books...

Anyone who watches this film, if not mentally challenged, would seriously consider becoming vegans...
April 26, 2014
Not sure how I'm supposed to rate something like this. Not an enjoyable experience. If your curious then I suppose you could check it out
March 4, 2014
Ignoring plants, as this film does, the film opens with the philosophy that we should have the same respect for all other species on the planet as we do humans. To do otherwise is akin to racism or speciesism. This is a sound point and the film does well to highlight examples of how humans mistreat animals to serve their own purpose. However I suspect the film's producers are vegan or at the very least vegetarian and as such have opted not to present alternatives that could be taken. For instance, American farming practices such as branding and dehorning without anaesthesia are demonstrated as well as inept use of a bolt gun and the use of antibiotics and hormones to maximise food production. These practices are less common in other markets such as Australia for instance and are not used in organic or free range farming but none of this is mentioned in the film. It is fair to argue that we should know where our food comes from and this film is certainly a step in the right direction.
February 12, 2014
its difficult to watch its eye opening and its a must see by everyone but the sad thing is alot of people will say they would rather not know the truth
January 16, 2014
If you love animals, don't watch this film. Depressing.
January 1, 2014
Every person should see this
December 17, 2013
Horrible and disturbing. Exposes the true extent of the exploitation and violence we inflict upon other species for our own selfish gain. Should be required viewing.
November 27, 2013
i challenge anyone to watch this and remain a) sane & b) carnivorous! i know i turned vegetarian after catching a few glimpses of a 'kosher' abatoir, but this 1hr40mins was HARDCORE.
August 20, 2013
notice no critics reviewed earthlings for rotten tomatoes Must be because they are all wearing fur coats.

This documentary is a good look at humanity, both MALES for the killing and FEMALES for the wearing of the fur coats. NO human be it female or male are in the right here. ALL are to blame. This is so sick and so sad its humbling. But then there's the other side of it. We need food. The detachmentthat these farmers have for the animals comes from the fact, that's their job. I think some are serial killers and murderers. But their job IS to murder on our behalf. You can't sugar coat it. Farming is murder for our benefit humane or inhumane. Doesn't matter what your opinion is of it. I eat meat, so ill put that out there right now. However, there must be a better way to do this.

Maybe if there is a GOD, his entire plan all a long was to wipe out all animals lifeby using us to do it and then inturn wipe ourselves out and then start the whole experiment again with new creatures he's making in the ocean right now that we can't see.
August 10, 2013
A brutal, disgusting and revolting watch. Even harder than "An American Crime", "The Act of Seeing with One's Own Eyes" and "The Butcher (2007)"
½ August 1, 2013
Hard to watch. I have been shown "the lowest point of debasement man can reach." This film has me re-evaluating most of my lifestyle choices and darkened my perspective on the human species. More of us need to see this.
July 15, 2013
That... was... intense.
June 11, 2013
This is the worst best movie ever. it is one of those movies that don't leave you with a warm fuzzy feeling so you can't really say you "enjoyed" it. But at the same time it impacts you so much that you can't deny it's brilliance.
I went in having been told that I should have tissues there and be expected to cry. I expected to be upset but scoffed at the crying. I've been vegetarian now for YEARS and feel I've seen almost any slaughter video, fur video, animal abuse video.
I am haunted by videos of cows trying to escape the path to the slaughter room. Dogs blinking on a dead pile after their skin has been removed. These images have been deeply embedded in my mind for years. Solidifying my stance and strengthening me against the abuse I would receive from angry meat eaters (my term for meat consumers who rage when they hear I am veg)
How wrong I was. They start by instilling in the viewer just how much humans truly are the ultimate foolish ass hole in the world (something I already believed). With only a sampling of the past 100 years. Racism, sexism, molestation, rape, war. Then they break down our interactions with nature and animals in 5 parts. Starting first with pets. I knew I already hated that people don't spay/neuter their pets. I knew I already hated people for simply abandoning their pets when they can't afford them or they move to a new place etc. But I didn't know ....oh I didn't know how far, how terrible and how commonly horrid people can be. The images shown to me in the first 5 minutes of part I have me choking back tears now. Humans are absolutely, irrefutably ass holes.
I watched this with David and I DID warn him at parts to close his eyes. I knew he wouldn't want to see what was coming up next at some points when I would see clips I'd already seen. The fur industry clips of china raccoon dogs, skinned alive and tossed into a pile. I covered my face but it didn't help. I could see in my mind the image David was seeing and I wept. I heard him, "OHHHHHH!" and knew it was now planted in his minds eye.
I DIDN'T know that leather DOESN'T come from the meat industry, This only further solidified my HATRED for the leather industry. It also destroys the argument people give me all the time. I'm always told, "Why don't you wear leather? The animals already dead?!" Of course my response is, "The hot dog is already dead too. I still don't eat it! I don't support the killing of animals! I think you are confusing this with me not wanting to personally kill animals. I don't support the KILLING of animals."
But now that I know the process of leather it sickens me even more :(

This movie, actually informed me and made me sick. But strengthened me again and for that I must give it 5 stars.
February 5, 2013
'Earthlings' is the mother of all documentaries. You'll never look at your food the same way again, and that's a necessary requirement for the human population, but be warned, this is not for the squeamish.
January 11, 2013
"For those who watch Earthlings, the world will never be the same."
Tom Regan
citawijaya
Super Reviewer
½ November 16, 2012
No, nope, nein, gaaaaaah, no.
October 26, 2012
A must-see for everyone who eats meat, owns a pet, wears leather or uses drugs and cosmetics.
½ September 9, 2012
Hard to watch, but must see.
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