When Elephants Were Young

DVD Release: January 17, 2017
When Elephants Were Young


William Shatner narrates this story of a young man and his young elephant, living together in Thailand. Their tender bond reveals a complex relationship, in which elephants live with humans even though they are wild animals. While the lens never strays from its focus of preserving this magnificent creature from extinction, it also portrays the paradoxes of elephants in captivity, dismantling common beliefs about the relationship between human and elephant.

Dove Review

Elephants are beautiful majestic creatures, the biggest land animals in the world. Travel to Thailand to learn about this animal on the verge of extinction.

In Thailand alone, about 2,800 elephants are in captivity, and 1,000 are still in the wild. Their natural habitat has been cut down to make way for new homes and farms. Also, elephants were once used for farming, to haul logs, clear land, and carry supplies. Now, tractors and other modern equipment are used for farming, building, and transportation. Generation after generation of villagers cared for the elephants, but now they are no longer needed in that capacity. In the past, the poor could walk the streets with the elephants, and they would beg people to buy sugar cane from them to feed the elephants. Now it is illegal to walk elephants or beg in Thailand.

“When Elephants Were Young” is a very educational documentary and provides enlightening facts pertaining to the African elephant. Learn about what people are doing to keep the elephants from distinction, how elephants are kept in captivity, and how laws are being broken, due to loop holes. This film gives an eye-opening account of these astonishing animals.

We are proud to award this production with the Dove “Family-Approved” Seal for all ages.

Content Description

Faith: None
Violence: People chain, hit and capture elephants.
Sex: None
Language: None
Violence: People chain, hit and capture elephants.
Drugs: Discussion about man drinking too much; scene of men smoking; man drinks from a bottle.
Nudity: Shirtless men.
Other: Wild animals are captured; elephants on verge of extinction; discussion regarding illegal sales of ivory; discussion regarding Buddhist rituals.


Company: Blackrock Films
Director: Patricia Sims
Producer: Patricia Sims
Genre: Documentary
Runtime: 86 min.
Starring: Narrated by William Shatner
Reviewer: Donna Rolfe