Horses were used by the film industry for years, in everything from westerns to period dramas. However, just because something has been commonplace for a long time doesn’t mean it’s true. So what exactly is wrong with using horses in film? The movie 2021 The power of the dog is just one example of how horses and other animals are forced to perform for on-screen entertainment. Often they suffer in an industry that cares more about getting the “right shot” than considering the inherent rights of the animals it uses.
How “The Power of the Dog” Exploited Animals
Like most who have seen the film, we are deeply disturbed by the scenes in which a bull is said to have been castrated and a horse is clearly agitated. Although it’s obvious that a camera trick was used and actor Benedict Cumberbatch didn’t actually hit a horse, the animal was still clearly upset and scared in the scene. And according to this Variety item, Cumberbatch followed a full acting method during filming, never breaking with his character, and was quoted as saying, “Everything you see in the movie, I learned…“Learned” is a big word . I did it and I lived it. I did everything you see in the movie. This obviously includes the castration of a bull.
Clearly upset and frightened, the horse is NOT “acting”. #Benedict Cumberbatch was quoted saying “I did everything you see in the movie” – he apparently learned how to castrate bulls.
—PETA (@peta) December 2, 2021
This Los Angeles Times room details how Cumberbatch spent time on a ranch in Montana learning how to castrate a bull. What we don’t know is if he did it on screen as well. In response to that and the glaring distress of a horse on set, we lambasted the film on social media, and our the video on Instagram has over 385,000 views– so, clearly, the issue resonates with a lot of people! After messages from PETA and backlash from audiences, director Jane Campion spoke to vanity lounge. DDespite his comments, there are some dodgy (to say the least) scenes in the movie, and since no one wants to say how they shot the scenes and Cumberbatch brags about castrating bulls for the role , The power of the dog is still a skipping movie.
We expect to see “bad guy” characters in film doing “bad guy” things on screen – even to animals – and sometimes those messages can be powerful, but those scenes still have to be done using human technology. , and real animals must never to suffer. In this case, real animals were exploited and one horse in particular was clearly in distress.
What’s wrong with the use of horses and other domestic animals in movies?
Pets are no more safe from the deprivations, cruelties and dangers of the motion picture industry than wild animals. Horses, for example, have historically been among the most commonly injured and killed animal types on set. Girl, American Outlaws, Simpatico, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journeyand Luck are just a few of the productions in which horses have died.
Horses are extremely susceptible to injury and stress as they are easily frightened prey, and movie and television sets are not natural environments for them.
Does “The Power of the Dog” have a “No animal harmed” disclaimer?
The power of the dog does not feature the “No animals were harmed” disclaimer—published by American Humane (AH)—in the film’s end credits. Even if this were the case, the disclaimer is never a guarantee that the animals were not exploited, harmed or killed during production. In a scathing survey titled “Animals have been injured“, The Hollywood Reporter chronicled AH’s story of alleged cover-ups, jeopardizing Screen Actors Guild funding and productions that received its approval despite animal deaths and injuries. AH releases the statement only on the short time the animals are on set and apparently does not take into account how they are trained, the conditions they are kept in when not working, or how they are disposed of once industry has finished using them.
What can westerns and period pieces do better?
In such a creative industry, there are better ways to show animals in movies and TV shows without using them at all. Special tracks have been used in some movies to help horses walk, and break ropes can be used to avoid tripping. But even with these precautions, animals can be injured or killed. In Battle horse, a horse died during transport despite the precautions taken on set. It’s time for westerns, period plays, and all movies and shows to limit or completely eliminate the use of horses. If productions can’t use human-like, realistic CGI and other alternatives, they should consider completely reworking their stories.
When looking for a movie to watch, jump The power of the dog– and let Netflix know you’re sick of seeing animals being exploited for entertainment: