Peaceable Kingdom: The Journey Home explores the powerful struggle of conscience experienced by several people from traditional farming backgrounds who come to question the basic ... See full summary »

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Peaceable Kingdom: The Journey Home explores the powerful struggle of conscience experienced by several people from traditional farming backgrounds who come to question the basic assumptions of their way of life. A riveting story of transformation and healing, the documentary portrays the farmers' sometimes amazing connections with the animals under their care, while also providing insight into the complex web of social, psychological and economic forces that have led to their inner conflict. Interwoven with the farmers' stories is the dramatic animal rescue work of a newly-trained humane police officer whose sense of justice puts her at odds with the law she is charged to uphold. With strikingly honest interviews and rare footage demonstrating the emotional lives and intense family bonds of animals most often viewed as living commodities, this groundbreaking documentary shatters stereotypical notions of farmers, farm life, and perhaps most surprisingly, farm animals themselves.

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28 February 2004 (USA)  »

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If you love animals, you must swallow this bittersweet medicine
12 December 2004 | by (Winnipeg, Canada) – See all my reviews

Peaceable Kingdom is a one-of-a-kind, good cop/bad cop cinematic work over for people who love animals but still eat them. This independent nonprofit production company - aptly named Tribe of Heart - doesn't just rub viewers' noses in extended footage of the brutality farmed animals typically endure today, it spends most of its time uplifting us with a vision of a peaceable kingdom where those same animals are as dear to people's hearts as any pet dog or cat. That peaceable kingdom is here and now, if only on a small scale, at a large and legendary (in the animal rights and welfare community) rural property and nonprofit organization in upstate New York called Farm Sanctuary.

If the stick of Peaceable Kingdom is the footage of abused farm animals, the carrot is the story of Farm Sanctuary and the people of all ages who visit it every week, celebrating the sacred bond between animal and human. Director Jenny Stein focuses on a few very special visitors who tell their stories to the camera. Particularly moving is the story of a young former animal farmer, former conflicted 4-H kid, who lost his compassion for farm animals growing up and regained it on a visit to Farm Sanctuary.

He no longer farms or eats animals; he advocates for them. If you see this deeply moving film you may too.


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