Chris Hegedus & D A Pennebaker
United States, 91 min
Notably famous for their musical docu- mentaries, Donn Alan Pennebaker and his wife Chris Hegedus here explore, in the ‘cinéma direct’ style that char- acterises them, the crusade led by the lawyer Steven Wise and his team – the Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP) – to change the legal status of an animal, from that of an “object” without rights to that of a “person” enjoying protection. Observing a lengthy process likely to bring about a fundamental change in our culture, Unlocking the Cage builds a story, as passionate as it is hectic, which depicts the lawyer’s efforts, supported by the declarations of primatologists from all over the world, to prove that certain animals with complex cognitive functions – such as chimpanzees, whales, dolphins and elephants – should enjoy limited rights. By appealing to the “Habeas Corpus” principle, used historically, in particular in the fight for the abolition of slavery, Steven Wise attempts the impossible...
Share your thoughts
with the filmmakers
Would you like to share your thoughts with a director? Do you have any questions or comments? Don't hesitate to write them a message by clicking on the button below.