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"While The Islands and The Whales may be a visually stunning, aurally impressive technical marvel, it is Day’s sensitivity to his amenable subjects and balanced approach that make the film a commendable success. It’s not without reason that the Day took home the Emerging International Filmmaker Award following its World Premiere at Hot Docs. He’s one to watch."
- Ion Cinema
"Day captures the awesome visual power of the land as sweeping cinematography shows the Faroe Islands shrouded in mist and suspended in time. The film gains impressive access to the community, which proves particularly advantageous for obtaining footage of the whale hunt. The immersive aural tracks let the wind blow and the birds squawk as the film depicts a land worth preserving. The soundtrack affords a sense of being present on the Faroe Islands and right in the thick of the fight."
- POV Magazine
In their remote home in the North Atlantic the Faroe Islanders have always eaten what nature could provide, proud to put local food on the table. The land yields little, so they have always relied on harvesting their seas.
Hunting whales and seabirds kept them alive for generations, and gave them the way of life they love; a life they would pass on to their children. But today they face a grave threat to this tradition.
It is not the controversy surrounding whaling that threatens the Faroese way of life; the danger is coming from the whales themselves.
The Faroese are among the first to feel the affects of our ever more polluted oceans. They have discovered that their beloved whales are toxic, contaminated by the outside world. What once secured their survival now endangers their children and the Faroe Islanders must make a choice between health and tradition.
Pioneering Technology In Documentary Film
We are very excited to be pioneering new sound technology on this film both in with documentary field recordings and theatrical delivery.
In the field we painstakingly recorded this film with an four capsule ambisonic microphone which captures the entire sphere of sound around it, not only allows us to remap the source sound in full 3D, including vertical access.
This means that with a Dolby Atmos 128 speaker array we can bring a cinema or home audience into the exact sound space of the islands, completely encapsulating the audience in the sound as it was in the scene left-right, front-back and up-down.
We worked on developing this technology to its full potential with Skywalker Sound and Harpex Ambisonics.
For this reason the theatrical and bluray versions will be a little bit of cinema history! It is a spine tingling experience in 5.1 or 7.1 surround or Atmos and we can't wait to bring this new experience to audiences.
Ro*co Films International
Director Mike Day
Production Company Intrepid Cinema
Producer Mike Day
Co-producer Henrik Underbjerg & Stefan Frost
Cinematographer Mike Day
Editors Mary Lampson
Sound Designer Chris Barnett at Skywalker Sound
Composer Antony Partos
Partners Sundance Documentary Institute
San Fransisco Film Society
The Filmmaker Fund
Danish Film Institute
Scottish Documentary Institute
Influence Film Foundation