The End of the Line

The End of the Line traverses the world exposing the devastating effects that overfishing with modern technology is having on fish stocks and exploring the real solutions to solve the crisis. The film’s point that overfishing occurs, and has dire repercussions. International fishing guidelines are regularly ignored by poachers and individual governments to astonishing degrees; in some cases, the suggested maximum catch is exceeded by tenfold or more. Many species of fish have been fished almost to extinction. So overfishing can result in 1) ecological disasters, and 2) significant loss of jobs. The End of the Line is a disturbing reply to the notion that the world’s oceans are an endless source of abundance. What’s clear is that since the rise of factory fishing in the 1950s, we’ve been taking fish out of the ocean faster than they can be replaced. Some species, like cod off of Newfoundland, have already effectively disappeared due to overfishing.  In fact, according to the numerous scientists featured in the film, fish stocks the world over will collapse in 40 to 50 years if they continue to be depleted at the current rates. While the simple solutions it offers at the end hardly seem enough to turn back the apocalyptic doom and gloom scenario, it’s still a useful wakeup call and a first step to alerting people to a problem they might not be aware of. If you’re struck by the surprising notion that we may be on the verge of running out of wild fish in the world’s oceans–and that the loss will affect entire ecosystems that will impact our own–this film will be worthwhile. There are those that can’t see what’s happening, and their friends that don’t care. While it’s hard to say I enjoyed this movie – it was informative, depressing and yet hopeful at the same time – I believe they laid out the issues and problems in a non-biased way. I think everyone should watch this movie and make an informed decision on how they can contribute to help solve the problem. I just wish they would have given more ways on how to get involved in helping avoid the crisis. Don’t eat fish, at home or at restaurants. I recently became a vegetarian after years of eating lots of fish, so this movie gives me incentive to try to stick to it. Good documentary on an important subject.  Documentary 2009 PG 1hr 22m.


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