The Islands and the Whales

Intrepid Cinema, Radiator Film, American Documentary | POV

On the isolated north Atlantic archipelago of the Faroe Islands, the longtime hunting practices of the Faroese are threatened by dangerously high mercury levels in the whales, decimated seabird populations, and anti-whaling activists. Mike Day’s exquisitely photographed film “The Islands and the Whales” explores the inextricable links between the oceans poisoned by coal burning power plants and the resulting direct impacts on the way of life of these remote islanders. The Faroese are scolded by animal welfare activists as primitives and advised to adopt a vegetarian diet. But with a climate unsuitable for sustaining an agricultural economy and food imports carrying even greater deleterious environmental ramifications, the islanders struggle between maintaining their traditional way of life and the long-term health problems that threaten them. The Faroese are the proverbial canary in the mine, their story an incredible microcosm and warning to the rest of the world. For its powerful and moving composition of the effect humans have on nature and nature on humans, “The Islands and the Whales” wins a Peabody Award.


Executive Producers: Minette Nelson, David Eckles, Justine Nagan, Chris White. Co-Executive Producers: John Atkinson, Niall Christie, George Day, Karen Day, Matt Day, Phil Norah. Director/Producer: Mike Day. Co-Producers: Henrik Underbjerg, Stefan Frost.