A candid and introspective look at the extreme beliefs and motives of Ingrid Newkirk, the British-born co-founder and driving force behind People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), the world's largest animal-rights organization.
How did a controversial, ultra-radical organization become the largest animal rights group in the world? For the past 25 years, Ingrid Newkirk and People For the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) have tirelessly attacked one of the pillars of civilization: mankind's use of animals. Ingrid and her supporters are driven by the single-minded conviction that humans must not use animals for any reason - not for food, clothing, medical experimentation, or even for entertainment. Ingrid works 18-hour days and lives in a one-bedroom apartment with little furniture. She publicly hopes that mad cow disease will ravage the country; she believes a cure for AIDS is not worth the life of a single monkey; and when Ingrid dies, she wants her body dissected, eaten, and made into clothing - as a statement of solidarity with non-human animals. Having obtained unprecedented access to Ingrid and the activities of her organization, I Am An Animal thoroughly explores PETA's unconventional ideology and its... Written by
Matthew Galkin's absorbing account of the firebrand animal activist, Ingrid Newkirk, won The Golden Starfish Documentary Award at the Hampton Film Festival. Even if it did not win the best documentary award (it was beaten by one featuring an Iraq war vet), it is still a worthwhile film for those who are interested in animal rights.
First, a disclosure. I am not a vegetarian. I would be if I didn't have to give up chicken wings. I do not eat the quantity of meat in a Happy Meal as a rule, but when it come to hot wings, I will never be able to give those up. I also like to pig out at Thanksgiving and Christmas. I admire those who can overcome these vices. Also, I would not be willing to part with my companions, Bitsy and Muffin. Life would be a drag without them.
Other than that, I was impressed with the film and the desire of the people in PETA to uncover the abuses happening to animals in the world. While I give to many animal organizations, I do not give to them as I think they step over the line. But, like Bill Maher say in the film, they line would not get pushed if they didn't step over it.
Anyone who cares about animal rights probably knows everything in this documentary, but it would be a great benefit for others to see it. You may not agree with all their policies, but it will get you thinking about making some changes in your life.
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