Films & Schedules

  • At the Edge of the World

  • Dan Stone

97 minutes

Production Company:
Endeavor Media/WealthEffectMedia Inc.
Dan Stone, Craig Stone
Production Designer:
Pat Kelleher
Mathieu Mauverney, Simeon Houtman, Rip Odebralski, Tim Gorski, James Joyner, Jon Kane, Dan Fernandez
Patrick Gambuti Jr., Kurt Engfehr
Patrick Donahue, Andrey Netboy
Jeff Gibbs, Tierro Lee
With: Paul Watson, Alex Cornelissen

Monday September 0809:00PM AMC 10 Add Film to MyTIFF Filmlist
Friday September 1206:00PM AMC 9 Add Film to MyTIFF Filmlist
Saturday September 1304:15PM AMC 10 Add Film to MyTIFF Filmlist

If you think pirate stories are a thing of the past, meet the members of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, seafarers who raise customized Jolly Roger flags over their ships while conducting contemporary battles on the Antarctic Ocean. The treasures they protect are the lives of whales on the verge of extinction. Their enemies are Japanese vessels that continue to hunt whales despite an international ban. These poachers exploit a loophole that allows killing for scientific research, but the meat usually ends up in restaurant kitchens. Sea Shepherd's goal is to stop the slaughter, even if it requires aggressive actions.

At the Edge of the World follows one season in this high-stakes war. At the helm of Sea Shepherd is controversial Canadian activist Paul Watson, who left Greenpeace to pursue his own methods. He sets out with a crew of forty-six international volunteers who are relatively inexperienced at sea. The ships, named Robert Hunter and Farley Mowat, carry a helicopter that enables stunning overhead photography. Its combat tools include a steel “can opener” designed to rip open the hull of enemy ships while they lie in port, rope to tangle propellers and stink bombs that make whale meat inedible.

How far would you go to save an animal's life? That is the question at the heart of Watson's expedition. Much of the team's time is spent searching and waiting, but when Sea Shepherd finally encounters a whaling vessel, the young activists must face challenges both physical and mental.

For his first feature, director Dan Stone has assembled a stellar crew. Their cameras keep hot on the trail of the action, and the suspense of watching two real ships collide is more gripping than any computer-generated version.

Whatever you think of Sea Shepherd's outlaw tactics, At the Edge of the World will force you to grapple with the difficult question of how to protect endangered species when the law proves inadequate.

Thom Powers

Dan Stone was born in New York City. He received his M.B.A. in entrepreneurial management from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. At The Edge of the World (08) is his first documentary feature.

Cadillac People's Choice Award