New Bedford, Mass. — The Dock-U-Mentaries Film Series continues on Friday, May 18th at 7:00 PM with Tongue Cutters a 2017 film by Solveig Melkeraaen. Dock-U-Mentaries is a co-production of New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park, the New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center, and the Working Waterfront Festival. Films about the working waterfront are screened on the third Friday of each month beginning at 7:00 PM in the theater of the Corson Maritime Learning Center, located at 33 William Street in downtown New Bedford. All programs are open to the public and presented free of charge.
When the Atlantic cod heads for the Northern Norwegian coast to spawn, the children in the fishing village Myre sharpen their knives and get ready for work. Cod tongue cutting is an age-old tradition. Kids as young as five take part in the process of producing this delicacy. With an almost frightening pace, their knives slice and cut.
Tongue Cutters follows two children, Ylva (age 9) and Tobias (age 10). Ylva lives in Oslo and comes to visit her grandparents – and to learn cod tongue cutting. Tobias has worked on the docks since he was six and is already skilled with the knife. Now he is to tutor Ylva. We follow their friendship see how children, when given the opportunity, take on responsibility for work, life and each other.
Solveig Melkeraaen (b. 1978) is one of Norway’s most successful documentary filmmakers. Her 2014 film GOOD GIRL (“a feel-good film about depression”) was a big success in Norwegian cinema and at a number of international film festivals. Melkeraaen was born and raised in Øksnes in Northern Norway and started to cut cod tongues at the age of six.
The New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center, located at 38 Bethel Street, is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and presenting the history and culture of New Bedford’s fishing industry through exhibits, programs, and archives.
New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park was established by Congress in 1996 to help preserve and interpret America’s nineteenth century whaling industry. The park, which encompasses a 13-block National Historic Landmark District, is the only National Park Service area addressing the history of the whaling industry and its influence on the economic, social, and environmental history of the United States. The National Park visitor center is located at 33 William Street in downtown New Bedford. It is open seven days a week, from 9 AM-5 PM, and offers information, exhibits, and a free orientation movie every hour on the hour from 10 AM-4 PM. The visitor center is wheelchair-accessible, and is free of charge. For more information, call the visitor center at 508-996-4095, go to www.nps.gov/nebe or visit the park’s Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/NBWNHP. Everyone finds their park in a different way. Discover yours at FindYourPark.com
About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 407 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at www.nps.gov, on Facebook www.facebook.com/nationalparkservice, Twitter www.twitter.com/natlparkservice, and YouTube www.youtube.com/nationalparkservice.