‘Patrick and the Whale’ screens at SJI Library on July 12

Submitted by the Friday Harbor Film Festival

Using stunning underwater footage, Patrick explores the fascinating nature of the sperm whale, attempting to shine a light on its intelligence and complexity, as well as highlighting its current and past relationship with humankind. This award-winning film will be shown at 7 pm on Friday, July 12 at the San Juan Island Library. A pre-recorded interview with Director Mark Fletcher will follow the screening. Details are available at fhff.org. This event is FREE and open to the public. No tickets or reservations are needed.

Patrick and the Whale

Winner of the 2023 Friday Harbor Film Festival’s Audience Choice Award for the best in-theatre feature, Patrick and the Whale follows Patrick Dykstra who has dedicated his life to following and diving with whales. He has learned how whales see and hear, how they perceive other creatures in the water, and how they behave at close quarters. This allows him to get closer than anyone else alive.

In Dominica, he had a life-changing encounter with a sperm whale. She seemed curious about him, coming within touching distance, pulsing him with her sonar. Patrick felt that she was genuinely trying to communicate. He returns to Dominica to find this special whale he named “Dolores” so she can help him show us the hidden world of her species. The film follows his personal journey and explores the psychology of a man who has sacrificed everything in his single-minded quest to connect with and understand one of the biggest creatures in the ocean.

The Best of the Fest Series

Each month through September Best of the Fest will offer award-winning documentaries along with livestream Q&As. Programs will begin at 7 p.m. Some are in collaboration with the San Juan Island Library; others are at the San Juan Island Grange. Since they’re on Fridays, they are a great “date night” activity.

Here’s the schedule for August and September:

Covenant of the Salmon People and Our Sacred Obligation – Aug. 9 at the Library

Common Ground – Sept. 13 at the Grange

Details about the films in the series are available on the fhff.org website. Plan now to view the exceptional Best of the Fest documentaries.

2024 Friday Harbor Film Festival

Mark your calendar for the 12th annual event —October 24-27 in-theatre and October 28- November 3 on-demand —to view this year’s selection of excellent documentaries, thematic blocks of short films, and Young Filmmakers Showcase entries. Plan now to attend!

To whet your appetite for excellent documentary filmmaking, dive deep into the rich legacy of the Friday Harbor Film Festival. Revisit and discover the historic and award-winning documentaries that FHFF has celebrated annually. We invite you to journey with us through the annals of cinematic excellence and to check back often as we continue to archive our festival’s storied history. View the programs from 2013 to 2023 at fhff.org/2023-program.

Thank you to our 2024 Best of the Fest Sponsors!

Presenting Sponsor: SaviBank

Media Sponsor: Cascade Public Media | KCTS9