NOTES FROM THE FILMMAKERS
The Last Animals comes from conflict photographer Kate Brooks. She turns her lens from the war zones she is used to covering to a new kind of genocide- the killing of African elephants and rhinos – in this sweeping and sobering expose of an underreported crisis.
As the single-digit population of Northern White Rhinoceros ticks closer to zero, Brooks outlines the myriad factors contributing to the current epidemic of highly effective poaching and trafficking syndicates, drawing startling connections between the illegal wildlife trade and international terrorism and border security.
But all is not yet lost- at the same time, Brooks documents the heroic efforts of conservationists, park rangers, and scientists to protect these animals on the verge of extinction in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. The result is a potent plea for worldwide attention and action to combat the permanent loss of these majestic creatures.
About the Filmmakers
The Last Animals was written and directed by Kate Brooks. Find out more about the film at thelastanimals.com.
“Documentaries such as The Last Animals run the risk of sliding into sentimentality, and though it’s quite easy to understand why, it can mute the message being delivered. Not so, here. The filmmaker declares early on that these animals gave her stability in turbulent times. But from there, the movie stares unblinkingly into the issue, weaving together all facets affected by it. The result is undoubtedly a tough watch at times, but to miss it would be turning the same blind eye that so much of the world has done to these creatures. There are flashes of hope within, including some justice brought to one of the world’s most notorious ivory traders and increased awareness on a global scale. Ultimately, The Last Animals remains a sober glimpse into a crisis playing out directly in front of us that can be changed. It presents viewers with a challenge and the various ways a global community is racing to help reverse it. But the heroes for them are an endangered species as well, and what becomes of these creatures will rely on films such as this becoming part of the collective consciousness. The future of White Rhinos appears to be too dire for such a turnaround, but countless other species are teetering on that edge and could benefit from any action on their behalf.” – Rob Rector. Film Threat. The Last Animals. 13 April 2021
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