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ENVIRONMENTAL MOVIES, FILMS, DVDs

 

To find environmental movies by category, use the subject index. Or just start scrolling down.

The environmental movies we list cover many genres, from drama to action to documentary. Some of the movies are mainstream films, others are well off the Hollywood path.

We'll keep adding to our environmental movies list over time—admittedly this page is in need of a good update—and you'll see that we're still working on installing descriptions or reviews for many movies. If you know of a great environmental movie that we missed, or can provide a plot summary for a movie we already have, you can email it to us.

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Environmental Movies about
ACTIVISM AND TAKING ACTION

Be The Change (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: People are tired of being scared, lectured to, guilt-tripped, and drowned in lists of "100 things you can do to save the planet." They are not going to turn towards living sustainably in the pursuit of being "less bad." They need to feel an emotional attraction to being "more good." People can embrace a lighter way of living but have some fun doing it.

Check it out at the film's web site

Call of the Hummingbird (2007) (Documentary)
A Full Frontal Eco-Manifesto

DESCRIPTION: In the gorgeous setting of central Brazil, a rag tag of group of 1000 permaculture experts, Rastafarians, alternative health practitioners, Hare Krishnas, and NGO executives work towards a do-it-yourself action plan to make the world a better place in 13 days. The film takes us on a journey that ranges from the practices of permaculture and consensus facilitation all the way to the meaning of the Mayan calendar, which mysteriously ends in 2012—just a few short years away. In the process we are introduced to new ideas about politics, nature, and even time itself.

See the trailer at the film's web site

Constant Gardener, The (2005)

See review under Corporations & Consumerism

Emperor Zehnder (2004)

Go Further (2003)

Hempsters: Plant the Seed (2003)

Hoot (2006)

Starring: Logan Lerman, Brie Larson, Cody Linley, David Arquette

REVIEW: Hoot is a light teen comedy that aims to deliver the message that people who care about other species, especially endangered ones, should act to prevent their corrupt destruction. In this case, the under-attack critters are a family of burrowing owls that happen to be nesting on the site of a new pancake house. It would have been nice if Hoot had given a little more background on these particular owls—what their function in the ecosystem is, etc. And the bad guys, cops, and subplots here are pretty cartoonish, with much of the action being overly familiar fare. Still, it all works reasonably well, eventually getting us to an ending in which they owl live happily ever after. (And who can argue with a movie that has music and appearances by Jimmy Buffett?)

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Lithium Springs (2006)

Starring: Carter Lord, Fred the dachshund

DESCRIPTION: Lithium Springs is a comedy-adventure that tells the story of an off-beat adventurer and his dog Fred, who stumble across an old map pinpointing the Fountain of Youth and a treasure buried in the swamp by Ponce de Leon. In their quest for the treasure, they discover the natural majesty of the area—and something that threatens to ruin it. This is a good, entertaining story that can be enjoyed by everyone, from kids to parents to grandparents.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Check it out at film's web site

Noam Chomsky: Rebel Without a Pause (2003) (TV movie)

Project, The (2002) (TV movie)

Shooting Vegetarians (2000)

Yes Men Fix the World, The (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: This is a screwball true story about two gonzo political activists who, posing as top executives of giant corporations, lie their way into big business conferences and pull off the world's most outrageous pranks. From New Orleans to India to New York City, armed with little more than cheap thrift-store suits, the Yes Men squeeze raucous comedy out of all the ways that corporate greed is destroying the planet. Who knew fixing the world could be so much fun?

Check out DVD on Amazon.com or at Bullfrog Films

Go to movies subject index  |  Search movies at Amazon.com

Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

CALLING A FOUL ON THE NEW “EXTREME” SPORT
Environmental Extremism — Let's Be Careful How We Define It

TODAY THE TREES, TOMORROW THE WORLD!
Environmentalists in Fiction — The New Bad Guys?

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
AGRICULTURE / FARMING

A Farm for the Future (2008) (Documentary)

REVIEW: The premise of this 48-minute movie, which was originally presented on BBC's Natural World series, is that oil will soon peak, and that this will have enormous implications for agriculture. Exploring this linkage is not new among peak oil films, but A Farm For the Future moves quickly past the framing of the problem to spend most of its time exploring how the "fuel/farming/food" issue can be solved....  

Read full review of A Farm for the Future

Watch the film at this page: sustainable farming video

Banana Split (2002) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Award-winning 47-min. documentary about the most popular fruit in Canada; examines the historical, social, economic, scientific and environmental aspects of banana production. Banana Split begins in a grocery store in Canada and takes viewers on a journey to Honduras to see where the fruit comes from.

Get more info at the film's web site

Watch free on Vimeo

Bitter Harvest (1981) (TV movie)

Starring: Ron Howard, Art Carney

DESCRIPTION: A dairy farmer discovers that his cows are getting sick because they are being poisoned. But by what?

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Broken Limbs (2004) (Documentary)
Apples, Agriculture, and the New American Farmer

REVIEW: This is a very good one-hour film about the effects of globalization on US agriculture and its small farmers. Apple farmers and marketers in the US northwest are the specific characters here that illuminate the broader agriculture scene, showing how in a single generation globalized free trade moved most US apple farmers from profitability to penury. The last quarter of the film shows that there is hope for small farmers—if they can convert to innovative sustainable agriculture practices, unplug from the globalized system, and deal directly with consumers.

Get more info/purchase at the film's web site

Search for VHS/DVD on Amazon.com

Cuba: The Accidental Revolution (2007) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: At one time, Cuba's agriculture was as conventional as the rest of the world's, relying on fossil-fuel inputs, synthetic fertilizers, and chemical pesticides. But with the 1989 collapse of the Soviet Union—and with the US embargo still in place—the imported inputs ceased and Cuba's whole economic system went into crisis. Factories closed, food supplies plummeted. Without fuel, fertilizer, and pesticides, Cubans were forced to turn to organic methods, oxen, and urban gardens, eventually establishing the modern world's first successful sustainable agriculture program. (45 min)

Check out DVD at Bullfrog Films

Fresh (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Fresh celebrates the farmers, thinkers and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system. Each has witnessed the the consequences of industrial agriculture: food contamination, environmental pollution, depletion of natural resources, and morbid obesity. Forging healthier, sustainable farming and food alternatives, they offer a practical vision for a future of our food and our planet.

Check out DVD at the film's web site

King Corn (2007) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Many of the ways we consume corn are obvious enough: corn on the cob and canned corn ... pop corn and corn chips ... corn bread and taco shells. But there are some insidious ways we eat the stuff, most notably via meat consumption and corn sweeteners. The scale of the corn-related food economy in the US is hard for the average person to fathom, but King Corn feeds us the complex truth of corn in a manner that is entertaining and educational....  Read full review of King Corn

... or check out DVD on Amazon.com

Man Who Had Everything, The (1998) (TV movie)

Milagro Beanfield War, The (1988)

My Father's Garden (1996)

The Real Dirt on Farmer John (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: The award-winning true story of third-generation American farmer John Peterson's hero's journey of success, tribulation, failure and rebirth. Peterson is a true American original—his story parallels that of the family farm in 20th-century America.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Sustainable Table  What's On Your Plate?   (2007) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Our standard methods of producing food do not take environmental or human health costs into consideration. What are the alternatives to the current agricultural system? This documentary takes a look at the food you eat, how it's produced, and how it might be produced better in the future.

Film not currently available

Go to movies subject index  |  Search movies at Amazon.com

Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

THE SEQUEL:  DIRTY BAKER’S DOZEN II — FARMAGEDDON
13 Factors in the Coming Crisis Affecting Agriculture and Food

THE CAFOs OF MEATOPOLIS—WHAT AN (ANIMAL) WASTE
CAFOs - Factory Farming Animals on an Industrial Scale

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
AIR POLLUTION / AIR QUALITY

A Breath of Air  (2002) (short video)
What Pollution is Doing to Our Children

DESCRIPTION: A 28-minute documentary that describes results of the "Children's Health Study" being conducted by investigators at the Southern California Environmental Health Sciences Center and USC's Children's Environmental Health Center.

Get more info or purchase info at mapcruzin.com

Wonderful Days (2003)

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

“BIGGER FAN IN THE BATHROOM” IS NOT THE SOLUTION
Indoor Air Quality - Problems and Solutions

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
ANIMALS / BIODIVERSITY / SPECIES / EVOLUTION

Arctic Tale (2007) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Set in the vast snow kingdom at the top of the world, Arctic Tale is a real-life adventure from the people who brought you March Of The Penguins. This family film follows two very different arctic creatures, Nanu, the polar bear cub and Seela, the walrus pup, through exciting and harrowing struggles for survival. Armed only with their natural instincts and mothers' guidance, these inspiring animals face countless trials and challenges in a beautiful icebound world that is rapidly melting beneath them.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Beavers (1988)

Being Caribou (2005) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Karsten Heuer and Leanne Allison spent five months keeping pace—on foot—with the "Porcupine" Caribou herd of North America's northwestern region. They documented their epic journey and the surrounding wild places as a way of bringing attention to the inadvisability of drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, which serves as the calving grounds for the herd. As it turns out, Heuer and Allison also made an awe-inspiring, very watchable film. There's a short bit about how native peoples still hunt and use caribou at the beginning of the movie that would have been better placed as an insert in the middle of the long on-the-trail section. But that's a minor criticism of a generally impressive film, which won more than a dozen film-festival awards.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Learn more at the film's web site

Born Free (1966)

Born to Be Wild (1995)

Cane Toads - An Unnatural History (1987) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: A fat, ugly creature whose sole purpose in life is the pursuit of sexual gratification is rapidly taking over Australia! The cane toads were imported by the sackload from Hawaii to Australia in 1935 in an attempt to rid the country of the Greyback beetle, which was rapidly destroying their sugarcane crop. The cane toads adapted beautifully to their new surroundings. Problem was, the beetle could fly and the cane toad couldn't. What the cane toad is unusually good at, however, is making more cane toads--thousands upon thousands more. If Monty Python produced a National Geographic Special, it would be Cane Toads !

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Coexisting with Beavers ( ) (Documentary/How-To)

DESCRIPTION: Three-part DVD including: 1) a natural history of beavers; 2) how to make and install a pipe-and-cage flow device to control beaver flooding; 3) some info about Dorothy Richards, the Beaver Woman.

Available here

Deeds Not Words (1998) (TV movie)

Fierce Creatures (1997)

Starring: John Cleese, Jamie Lee Curtis, Kevin Kline, Michael Palin

REVIEW: Could feathered, furry, and fierce creatures be the marketing idea that will save a local zoo that has become the latest acquisition of a huge, heartless, and decidedly non-furry corporation? John Cleese reunites with the rest of the pack from A Fish Called Wanda  to show us a hilarious time as they figure out the answer.

Check it out at Amazon.com (DVD)  |  (VHS)

Free Willie (1993)

Genesis (2004) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Blending humor with seriousness and innocence with wisdom, the film's tale is revealed by an African storyteller. From the birth of the universe and the stars to the fiery beginnings of our planet and the appearance of life on earth to the meaning of time and matter and birth and death, this is the story of us all—plants, animals, and humans.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Gentle Ben (1967)

Gorillas in the Mist (1988)
The Story of Dian Fossey

Starring: Sigourney Weaver, Bryan Brown, Julie Harris, John Omirah Miluwi

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Hoot (2006)

See listing under Activism

March of the Penguins (2005) (Documentary)

REVIEW: March of the Penguins opens with stunning distance shots of seemingly impossible icescape formations in the Antarctic wilderness. No creature could live in such a beautiful but utterly barren place. Or so one would think....  Read full review of March of the Penguins

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

MicroCosmos (1996) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: MicroCosmos captures the fun and adventure of a spectacular hidden universe revealed in a breathtaking, close-up view. Your family will marvel at a pair of stag beetles dueling like titans. The kids will stare bug-eyed as a magnificent army of worker ants race to stock their larder ... while trying to avoid becoming a feisty pheasant's dinner. And you'll have a front-row seat to witness an amazing transformation from caterpillar to butterfly, the remarkable birth of a mosquito, and many other minute miracles of life—all leaving no doubt that Mother Nature remains the greatest special effects wizard of all.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Never Cry Wolf (1983)

Night of the Wolf (2002) (TV movie)

Orangutans: Grasping the Last Branch (1989)

Say No to Bushmeat (2003)

Sharkwater (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Driven by a lifelong fascination with sharks, filmmaker Rob Stewart debunks historical stereotypes and media depictions of sharks as bloodthirsty, man-eating monsters and reveals the reality of sharks as pillars in the evolution of the seas. Sharkwater takes you into the most shark-rich waters of the world, exposing the corruption and violence of shark exploiters and showing how sharks could easily be wiped out within a few years due to human greed.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Learn more at the film's web site

Song of the Land (1953)

Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron (2002)

Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986)

Starring: William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, James Doohan, DeForest Kelley

REVIEW: To save Earth from an approaching alien probe, Kirk and the Enterprise crew go back in time to retrieve the only beings who can communicate with the probe—humpback whales. This is widely considered to be one of the best Star Trek films, with plenty of action and humor, and the comfortable feel of the cast from the original series. The subtext warnings about the dangers of species extinction are clear but not forced.

Check out DVD options at Amazon.com

Whale Mission: Keepers of Memory (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Almost wiped out in the 19th and 20th centuries, the northern right whale is the planet's most endangered large-whale species. Today there are fewer than 350 left. However, tantalizing evidence from genetic studies suggests there are more whales out there. This 52-minute film documents the exploits of the Sedna IV and her science team as they sail to the remote Cape Farewell whaling grounds in the treacherous North Atlantic Ocean. Could this area be the key to the future of right whales?

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Learn more at the film's web site  NOTE: page is slow to load

Whale Rider (2002)

REVIEW: A young Maori would be in line to become the next chief—if it weren't for the fact that she's a female. This movie is much more about humans than whales, as it shows cultural tradition struggling to survive modern times. But whales are indeed at the center of the subplot, and there are some great shots of the leviathans. The movie is a nice change of pace from the typically overwrought fare from Hollywood.

Check it out at Amazon.com  |  (VHS)

Winged Migration (2001)

DESCRIPTION: Be a witness to nature at its most stunning, as five film crews follow a rich variety of bird migrations through 40 countries and each of the seven continents. More than 450 people helped make this film, using planes, gliders, helicopters, and balloons to fly alongside, above, below, and in front of their migrating subjects. Let your eyes behold the wonders of the natural world as you fly along with these amazing birds through some of the world's most gorgeous areas.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

LIONS AND TIGERS AND BEARS (GOING EXTINCT) — OH MY!
Species Extinction: Causes, Statistics, and Trends

GOOD ADVICE: DON’T BUG THE WEB OF LIFE
Ten  Threats to the Web of Life  on Planet Earth

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
ANIMAL WELFARE

Cove, The (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: In a sleepy lagoon off the coast of Japan, behind a wall of barbed wire and "Keep Out” signs, lies a shocking secret. It is here, under cover of night, that the fishermen of Taiji engage in an unseen hunt for thousands of dolphins. The nature of the work is so horrifying, a few desperate men will stop at nothing to keep it hidden from the world. But when an elite team of activists, filmmakers and free-divers embark on a covert mission to penetrate the cove, they discover that the shocking atrocities they find there are just the tip of the iceberg.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Dealing Dogs (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Each year, 42,000 dogs are sold to veterinary schools and research labs by Class B dealers, who are required by federal law to buy the animals from pounds, shelters, and small breeders—and to treat them humanely. However, many Class B dealers violate the law. Dealing Dogs documents the undercover investigation that exposed the abuses that took place at one of America's most notorious Class B dealers, Martin Creek Kennel in Arkansas.

Check out DVD on Check out on Amazon.com (DVD)

See a trailer or learn more at the film's web site

Earthlings (2005) (Documentary)

REVIEW: If you can watch the entire hour and a half of this movie and not have to turn your head away once, you either have nerves of steel, a heart of stone, or a complete lack of eyeballs. This is a tour de force of heart-wrenching, sometimes gruesome clips showing how humans use and abuse animals in many prime areas of our lives—from food and clothing to medical research to entertainment. But it's not just a stream of disturbing visuals—the material is all woven together with an excellent narration (spoken by actor Joaquin Phoenix (Gladiator, et al)) that provides context and offers logical objections. The film could have been slightly strengthened by noting that animals usually die in pain and terror in the wild, too. (Not that this should excuse human torture of animals, but it at would have at least provided some context and would have preemptively defeated one obvious argument from animal-abuse apologists.) And perhaps Earthlings might have recognizing that people hunting for food is less objectionable to most of us than ego-driven trophy hunting. But these are quibbles. Earthlings is masterful in its comprehensive, clear-headed presentation of man's domination and mistreatment of animals. We would never let anyone treat our pets this way; why do we tolerate such treatment of other animals?

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Watch free on YouTube

Visit the film's web site

Game Warden (1955)

King Kong (2005)

Starring: Naomi Watts, Jack Black, Adrien Brody

REVIEW: Whether it's the original 1933 movie classic or this spiffy 2005 update from Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson, King Kong remains a great movie. Any potential animal-rights undertone to the plot gets lost in the excitement, but it's there if you care to perceive it—that is to say, man seems predisposed to use animals for ill-purpose (and, as the opening scenes with Kong show, sometimes vice versa). But there is no lecturing to be found in this classy, special-effects-laden epic, only a great, action-packed thrill ride, with Naomi Watts looking luminously vulnerable as Ann Darrow, and with appropriately poignant scenes between Kong, the blonde, and fate.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Natural History of the Chicken, The (2001) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Most of us best know the chicken from our dinner plates. Whether as thigh, wing or drumstick, we barely pause a moment to consider the bird's many virtues. This program expands the frontiers of popular awareness and delightfully reveals that this small, common, and seemingly simple animal is as complex and grand as any of God's creatures. The film allows us to rethink our relationship with a creature we have previously take for granted, while at the same time providing a lens through which we look at ourselves.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Plague Dogs, The (1982)

Animated, featuring voices of: John Hurt, Christopher Benjamin, James Bolam

DESCRIPTION (Wikipedia): Rowf (a labrador-mix) and Snitter (a smooth fox terrier) are two of many dogs used for experimental purposes at an animal research facility in the Lake District of north-western England. Eager to escape the tortures of life inside the facility, an escape is managed. Initially relieved and eager to experience their new freedom the dogs are soon faced, not only with the realities of life in the wild, but with another more terrifying realization—they are being hunted by their former captors.

Search for VHS/DVD on Amazon.com

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

EPISODE 96: “MANIMAL AND THE COSMETICS TESTING LABORATORY”
Animal Testing and Personal-Care Products

HOGGING THE SPOTLIGHT WITH MY PET THEORY
Hog Farming and Animal Welfare vs. The Cat Lady and Her Kitties

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
CHEMICALS, PESTICIDES, AND TOXICS

Acceptable Risks (1986) (TV movie)

Blue Vinyl (2002) (Documentary)

REVIEW: After watching Blue Vinyl, you may find yourself far less satisfied with the siding on your house and our vinyl-filled world in general, but you'll be glad your eyeballs made the trip trough this blue world....  Read full review of Blue Vinyl

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Chemical Reaction, A (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Dr. June Irwin, a dermatologist, noticed a connection between her patients' health conditions and their exposure to chemical pesticides. With relentless persistence she brought her concerns to town meetings to warn her fellow citizens that the chemicals they were putting on their lawns posed severe health and environmental risks. Dr. Irwin's persuasive arguments and data eventually led the town to enact a by-law that banned the use of all chemical pesticides. The pesticide manufacturers and their lawyers, of course, did not site idly by and just let it happen....

Learn more at the film's web site

Civil Action, A (1998)

Starring: John Travolta, Robert Duvall

REVIEW: Is contaminated water responsible for deaths and sickness in a suburban New England town? Can it be proved in court? Based on a true story, this movie dramatically relates the efforts of a dogged attorney to bring an industrial polluter to justice. It's great to watch Travolta's character dance on the edge of ruin, his brain knowing that the case is a likely loser but his heart wanting to see justice done.

Check it out at Amazon.com (DVD)  |  (VHS)

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)

Erin Brockovich (2000)

Starring: Julia Roberts

REVIEW: A barely qualified clerk in a law office uncovers evidence that a large electric utility has poisoned the water supply of Hinkley, California, with toxic chromium, causing disease and death among many locals. Erin Brockovich's efforts to find facts and push through a major lawsuit were central to the ultimate $333M award. Roberts' brassy, convincing performance brings the drama home. Based on a true story.

Check out DVD/VHS at Amazon.com

Homo Toxicus (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Tons of chemicals are released into the environment everyday. The average citizen is both unaware of this daily exposure and unaware of the long-term health effects these toxic substances can have on living organisms. Carried out with intelligence and humor, Homo Toxicus explores the myriad links between toxic chemicals and increasingly common health problems such as cancer, allergies, hyperactivity, and infertility.

Check out DVD at Bullfrog Films

Incredible Shrinking Woman, The (1981)

Kingdom of the Spiders (1977)

Starring: William Shatner, Tiffany Bolling

REVIEW: The premise of Kingdom of the Spiders is that pesticides, in particular DDT, have killed off so much of the local tarantulas' normal food sources that the creepy crawlies have been forced to move up the food chain, taking on cattle, dogs, and even humans. There is a lot of truth to the idea that chemical pesticides disrupt the natural balance of things, but this is not a movie about scientific fact. It's about hairy-scary spiders and a small town's fight to survive—a typical 1970s bugs-attacking-things movie. We have to admit, though—the last scene yields a surprisingly good payoff.

Check out DVD at Amazon.com

Michael Clayton (2007) (Documentary)

See Corporations & Consumerism

Monster (1979)

Safe (1995)

Sense of Wonder, A (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: When pioneering environmentalist Rachel Carson published Silent Spring in 1962, the backlash from her critics thrust her into the center of a political maelstrom. Despite her private persona, her convictions about the risks posed by chemical pesticides forced her into the role of controversial public figure. A Sense of Wonder is an intimate and poignant portrait of Rachel Carson's life as she emerges as America's most successful advocate for the natural world.  (55 min)

Check out DVD at Bullfrog Films

Taking Back Our Town (2001) (TV movie)

Tess of the Storm Country (1960)

Texas Gold (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: When Diane Wilson—a mother of five and a fourth-generation fisherwoman—discovered that her home, Calhoun County, Texas, had been named one of the most toxic places in America, she decided to take on the giants of the petro-chemical industry that were poisoning her community and knowingly devastating its once thriving fishing industry. Texas Gold profiles Wilson's decade and a half of brave actions—actions that have earned her the title of "unreasonable woman."

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Learn more at the film's web site

Toxic (2000)

Toxic Avengers ( ) (Documentary)

REVIEW: This 1-hour documentary takes on the US military's environmental record as it pertains to base operations in friendly foreign countries. It uses the aftermath of DoD's tenure at the Philippines Clark Air Force Base—the health effects on those who have lived with the base's contaminated land and water—and juxtaposes it against the US military's "forced withdrawal" from Vieques Island in Puerto Rico (due to relentless grassroots pressure there) and Australian locals' concerns about a nascent military base in the land down under. The film sticks to the issues at hand, avoiding political commentary on US hegemony and instead focuses on the health concerns of those who inherited the contaimated areas (or who are worried about uncontaminated areas becoming so).

Sorry, but this film is not currently available online. It does play occasionally
          on the Documentary Channel, Link TV, and other satellite channels.

Toxic Trespass (2007) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: In Toxic Trespass, filmmaker Barri Cohen launches an investigation into the effects of the chemical soup around us. She starts with her 10-year-old daughter, whose blood carries carcinogens like benzene and the long-banned DDT. Then, Cohen surveys two Canadian toxic hotspots, with startling clusters of deadly diseases. On the Native reserve ringed by chemical operations, the film reveals a startling birth rate problem that officials just can't ignore. Perhaps most appalling—and funny, in their own twisted way—are the roadblocks Cohen encounters when she tries to get information from federal officials. One tells her his department is "planning to discuss the plans."

Check it out at the film's web site

Unnatural Causes (1986) (TV movie)

Up Close and Toxic () (Documentary)

REVIEW: A well produced 45-minute exposé on the toxic soup of chemicals we are exposed to constantly inside our homes, cars, and workplaces.

Check it out at Bullfrog Films

Weapons of Moth Destruction (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: This one-hour film examines the California Department of Food and Agriculture's plan to spray untested pesticides on an area inhabited by 7 million people in California for the sake of eradicating the Light Brown Apple Moth—a "pest" that has not been documented to be a threat.

See trailer / learn more / purchase ... at the film's web site

World According To Monsanto, The (2008) (Documentary)

See Genetic Engineering / GMOS

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

AHH... THE AIR IS FILLED WITH THE SMELLS OF THE SEASON... AND DRYER SHEETS
Alternatives to Toxic Fabric Softener and Dryer Sheets

“LEFTOVERS AGAIN?” SAID THE REFRIGERATOR
Plastic Food Containers Health, and Better Food Storage Solutions

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
CORPORATIONS AND CONSUMERISM

Black Wave  (2008) (Documentary)
The Legacy of the Exxon Valdez

See Water (Pollution)

Constant Gardener, The (2005)

Starring: Ralph Fiennes, Rachel Weisz, Danny Huston

REVIEW: Forget about this as a "gardening film"—it's not. Instead, it's a superbly crafted tale of intrigue that finds the nexus of modern-day Britain's continuing methods of empire, a pharmacopoeia of shady corporate dealings, and the ongoing misery in Africa—a forsaken continent that the West has been manipulating and profiting from for more than a century. Blend in a bit of unsure romance and a couple shots of courageous behavior and you have yourself a darned good movie.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Corporation, The (2004) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: The Corporation explores the nature and spectacular rise of the dominant institution of our time. Footage from pop culture, advertising, TV news, and corporate propaganda illuminates the corporation's grip on our lives. Taking its legal status as a "person" to its logical conclusion, the film puts the corporation on the psychiatrist's couch to ask "What kind of person is it?"

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Watch free online at YouTube

Crooked E: The Unshredded Truth About Enron (2003) (TV)

Starring: Brian Dennehy, Christian Kane

REVIEW: Crooked E tells a slightly loose fictionalized version of the Enron debacle from the perspective of a young Enron account manager (Kane) who quickly gets caught up in the razzle-dazzle of the supposedly brilliant, forward-thinking company, only to slowly come to moral consciousness as the corruption becomes apparent and the unravelling begins. Brian Dennehy adds a nice touch as the boozing, jaded, at-the-end-of-the-line executive. The movie feels a bit over-the-top at times, but then, so was Enron. Overall, it does a fine job of conveying the mess that became Enron.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2005)

In Debt We Trust (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: In Debt We Trust reveals a hitherto unknown cabal of credit card companies, lobbyists, media conglomerates, and politicians colluding to deregulate the lending industry, ensuring that a culture of credit dependency can flourish. The film exposes the mechanisms and machinations that have allowed even the lowest wage earners to indebt themselves so heavily that house repossessions have become commonplace.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Insider, The (1999)

Starring: Al Pacino, Russell Crowe

REVIEW: This film is based on the true story of "60 Minutes" producer Lowell Bergman (Pacino) and Jeff Wigand (Crowe), a former research biologist for the Brown & Williamson tobacco company. Bergman suspects Wigand has a story to tell, but Wigand isn't talking. The company knows Wigand is flaky and leans hard on him to honor his confidentiality agreement, going so far as to have shadowy characters keep an eye on him. This does not sit well with Wigand, and he decides to go on camera for a Mike Wallace interview, risking arrest for contempt of court—and who knows what else. Now enter the complications of corporate-buyout politics, threats of lawsuits, and business-trumps-journalism hand wringing. It all makes The Insider a great ride, giving us a riveting story at the same time it shows us what an oxymoron "corporate journalism" really is.

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Maxed Out (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Maxed Out takes viewers on a journey deep inside the American style of debt where things seem fine as long as the minimum monthly payment arrives on time. Maxed Out paints a picture of a national debt nightmare which is all too real for most of us.

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Michael Clayton (2007) (Documentary)

Starring: George Clooney, Tom Wilkinson, Michael O'Keefe, Tilda Swinton, Sydney Pollack

DESCRIPTION: Attorney Michael Clayton is a "fixer," the go-to guy when his powerful New York law firm wants a mess swept under the rug. But now he's handed a crisis even he may not be able to fix. The firm's top litigator in a $3-billion case has gone from advocate to whistleblower. And the more Michael tries to undo the damage, the more he's up against forces that put corporate survival over human life—including Michael's.

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No Logo (2003)

Silver City (2004)

See review under Politics & Media

What Would Jesus Buy? (2007)

DESCRIPTION: Through retail interventions, corporate exorcisms, and some good old-fashioned preaching, Reverend Billy reminds us that we have lost the true meaning of Christmas. What Would Jesus Buy? is a journey into the heart of America from exorcising the demons at the Wal-Mart headquarters to taking over the center stage at the Mall of America and then ultimately heading to the Promised Land ... Disneyland.

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Yes Men Fix the World, The (2009) (Documentary)

See listing under Activism

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

WELCOME BACK, BABY, TO THE POOR SIDE OF TOWN
Plutocracy vs. Jobs, Health, and Environment

THE LOW-YIELD CORPORATE BONDS THAT TIE UP PROGRESS
Moving Forward Toward a Fair and Sustainable Agriculture System

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
ENERGY

Crooked E (2003) (TV)

See review under Corporations & Consumerism

Electric Valley, The (1983)

Energy Crossroads: A Burning Need to Change Course
(2007) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: America consumes 25% of the world's energy, 85% of which comes from non-renewable fossil fuels. Whether from a climate-change or peak-oil perspective, our energy consumption is a problem. Energy Crossroads examines the situation and offers concrete solutions for those who want to educate themselves. The film features passionate individuals, entrepreneurs, experts and scientists at the forefront of their fields, bringing legitimacy and expertise to the film's core message.

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Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room (2005)

Fuel (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: High oil prices, global warming, and an insatiable demand for energy—these issues will be the catalyst for heated debates and positive change for many years to come. Fuel exposes the shocking connections between the auto industry, the oil industry, and the government, while exploring alternative energies such as solar, wind, electricity and non-food-based biofuels. The film covers the pros and cons of biofuels, how America's addiction to oil is destroying the US economy, and how green energy can save us—but only if we act now.

Check out DVD at the film's web site

Killing Cars (1986)

Living with Renewable Energy (2008?) (Documentary)

This 2 hour DVD gives virtual tours of two off-grid homes, showing that you don't need to live a spartan lifestyle to live "off the grid."

On Deadly Ground (1994)

Starring: Steven Segal, Michael Caine

REVIEW: This is a rather typical lone-hero movie that features Steven Segal battling corporate robber-baron Michael Caine and his crew of thugs over a new super-polluting oil refinery. Eco-friendly messages abound, and the inevitable comeuppance meted out to the non-green bad guys by Segal will be quite enjoyable for anyone with environmental leanings or a desire to see things set right. Of course, less eco-friendly explosions abound as well, but On Deadly Ground remains good outlet for anyone who thinks that maybe, just maybe, oil companies don't always behave responsibly.

Check it out at Amazon.com (DVD)  |  (VHS)

Power Trip (2003)

There Will Be Blood (2007) (Documentary)

Starring: Daniel Day-Lewis, Barry Del Sherman, Dillon Freasier

DESCRIPTION: A sprawling epic of family, faith, power and oil, There Will Be Blood is set on the incendiary frontier of California's turn-of-the-century petroleum boom. The story chronicles the life and times of one Daniel Plainview, who transforms himself from a down-and-out silver miner into a self-made oil tycoon. But where there is oil and money to be made, there is conflict—and a good story.

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Who Killed the Electric Car? (2006) (Documentary)

See description under Vehicles

Also see: Peak Oil Movies

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

BIOMASS ONLY LOOKS GREAT IN A FUN-HOUSE MIRROR
Biomass and Sustainability — Why Biofuels Can't Replace Oil

“PAIN AT THE PUMP II—THE PROTESTING”
Will Expensive Fuel Eventually Cause Us To Protest Gas Prices

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
ENVIRONMENTAL CATASTROPHE

11th Hour, The (2007) (Documentary)

Featuring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Thom Hartmann, Kenny Ausubel, James Woolsey

DESCRIPTION: The 11th Hour confronts viewers with evidence of the indelible footprint that humans have left on this planet and the catastrophic effects of environmental problems like pollution, deforestation, over-mining of resources. The film explores the reasons for the fix we're in, fingering corporate greed, faulty public policy, bad leadership, and general ignorance of the issues. The 11th Hour finishes on a positive note, offering a discussion of solutions from a crack team of scientists, designers, and thinkers.

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Airzone Solution, The (1993)

Anima Mundi (2011) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Anima Mundi explores the systemic crisis we face---we know the system is broken and will eventually fail, but we are so depended on it, we cannot get rid of it. Meanwhile, the planet's life support systems are changing in a way that will not be good for humans (and many other species)....  Read full review of Anima Mundi

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See clips or get purchase info for this movie at the the film's website

Category 7: The End of the World (2005)

See listing under Global Warming

Day After Tomorrow, The (2004)

See listing under Global Warming

The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008)

Starring: Keanu Reeves, Jennifer Connelly, Kathy Bates

REVIEW: We have largely ignored scientists' increasingly urgent warnings about the need to focus on problems that have the potential to kill the planet. The Day the Earth Stood Still serves up a powerful reminder that there are consequences to willful ignorance and inaction. There aren't a lot of surprises in the plot of this 2008 remake, but the action keeps your eyes on the screen and yields a surprisingly emotional impact....  Read full review of The Day the Earth Stood Still

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Logan's Run (1976)

Starring: Michael York, Jenny Agutter, Peter Ustinov, Richard Jordan

REVIEW: In Logan's Run, the scene is set in the 23rd century, amidst an environmental catastrophe brought on by war, overpopulation, and pollution. The remaining human population is sequestered in a high-tech domed city, literally sealed off from the long-forgotten world outside. Technology has reached a point where citizens live in an apparent utopia, with physical labor minimized and pleasures of the body and mind in abundance. But there's a catch....  Read full review of Logan's Run

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Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1982)

Animated, featuring voices of: Sumi Shimamoto, Mahito Tsujimura, et al

DESCRIPTION: One thousand years after a war devastated much of the Earth, humanity clings to existence at the fringes of a vast, polluted forest inhabited by monstrous insects. Only Nausicaä, the princess of the tiny realm of the Valley of the Wind, grasps the environmental significance of the forest. She sees beyond petty wars and national rivalries to the only viable future for the planet.

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Scarred Lands and Wounded Lives: The Environmental Footprint of War (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: In all its stages, from the production of weapons—through combat to cleanup and restoration—war entails actions that pollute land, air, and water; destroy biodiversity; and drain natural resources. Yet the environmental damage occasioned by war and preparation for war is routinely underestimated, underreported, even ignored. The film aims to offer a fuller accounting of war's costs and consequences.

Learn more, view trailer, or get purchase info at the film's web site

Survival of Spaceship Earth (1972)

TC 2000 (1993)

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

“I’LL SEE YOUR KILLER ASTEROID AND RAISE YOU A PLETHORA OF PROBLEMS”
Environmental Disaster — The High Stakes of How We Play Our Hand

FIRE JUSTIN TIME, HIRE JUSTIN CASE
Avoid Problems and Save Money with The Resilient Household

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
FAIR TRADE / LABOR RIGHTS

Charcoal People, The (1999) (Documentary)

REVIEW: This movie finds the intersection between Amazon deforestation and global commerce by focusing on the lives of locals who make charcoal from cut-down trees. The movie could have benefitted from more backstory—that is, more exploration of the political policies that result in people finding themselves with no better option than to cut down noble trees—but the story is nonetheless compelling, showing how the free-trade wheel grinds down more on some than others.

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China Blue (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: China Blue is a powerful and poignant journey into the harsh world of sweatshop workers. Shot clandestinely, this is a deep-access account of what both China and the international retailers don't want us to see—how the clothes we buy are actually made. Filmed both in the factory and in the workers' faraway village, this documentary provides a rare, human glimpse of China's rapid integration into the free-market machine.

Check out DVD at Bullfrog Films

Hoffa (1992)

Starring: Jack Nicholson, Danny DeVito, Armand Assante, J.T. Walsh

Maquilapolis—City of Factories (2006) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Maquiladoras are the multinationally owned assembly plants that dominate the economy of the US-Mexico border region, employing over a million people. The movie tells the story of the good and bad aspects of this system though the lens of Carmen, one of the Maquiladora workers—her work life in chemical-saturated manufacturing plants; her home life with her kids in their garage-door house in a neighborhood beset by industrial pollution; and, once Panasonic pulls out of Mexico almost overnight, her legal battle over promised but unpaid termination pay. The story is compelling, and the film uses cool video techniques to keep things flowing. A must-see, especially for anyone who thinks that a free-trade world run by multinational corporations is a good thing.

Learn more at the film's web site

North Country (2005)

See review under Mining

Stolen Childhoods (2003) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Stolen Childhoods is a feature-length documentary film shot in seven countries, profiling laboring children and the pioneering efforts to get them educated, break their family's cycle of poverty, and lead them into a hopeful future.

Learn more at the film's web site

Silver City (2004)

See review under Politics & Media

Take, The (2004) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: In the wake of Argentina's spectacular economic collapse in 2001, Latin America's most prosperous middle class found itself in a ghost town of abandoned factories and mass unemployment. Since then, workers have reclaimed the factories and made an astounding success of them—operating them as non-corporate, democratically run cooperatives.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com (DVD)

Learn more at the film's web site

This Is What Democracy Looks Like (2000)

Wal-Mart – The High Cost of Low Price (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Takes you behind the glitz and into the real lives of workers and their families, business owners and their communities, in an extraordinary journey that will challenge the way you think, feel... and shop.

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Learn more at the film's web site

Who’s Counting?   (1995) (Documentary)
Marilyn Waring on Sex, Lies and Global Economics

According to our "modern" system of global accounting—as dictated by the UN, World Bank, and IMF—war and disease are positives on the balance sheet. Yet safe drinking water, clean air, animals in nature—even some people—count for nothing. This provides an overview of Marilyn Waring's thoughts and activism on this devlish problem.

Check out this movie at Bullfrog Films

Also see: Globalization/Global Trade Movies

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

LOSE TWO JOBS, OUTSOURCE ONE FREE!
The Impact of Global Trade: The WTO vs. Jobs and Democracy

“CLEAN UP ON ALL AISLES” SAID THE CORPORATE FOOD PROFITEER
Local Food and Farmers' Markets — Eat Fresh Food and Save Money Doing It

 

Environmental Movies about
FISH / SEAFOOD / FISHING

End of the Line, The (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Humans have long regarded the world's oceans as vast and inexhaustible. Now, we have learned otherwise. The End of the Line charts the devastating ecological impact of overfishing by interweaving both local and global stories of sharply declining fish populations, including the imminent extinction of the bluefin tuna, and illuminates how our modern fishing capacities far outstrip the survival abilities of any ocean species. A catastrophic future that awaits us—an ocean without fish by 2048 if we do not adjust our fishing and consumption practices.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com or at Bullfrog Films

Frankenfish (2004)

See review under Genetic Engineering/GMOs

Inheritance: A Fisherman's Story (2003)

See listing under Mining

One More Dead Fish (2005) (Documentary)

REVIEW: One More Dead Fish is a 54-minute documentary that tells the story of a small fishing town in Nova Scotia. Local hand-line fishers, facing new federal rules that will phase them out in favor of industrial fishing fleets, barricade themselves inside a Federal building in protest. The film does a decent job of exploring the the general crisis in the global fishing industry but is at its best when it shows the personal and environmental impact of bad policies enacted by government officials beholden to industry.

Learn more at the film's web site

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

HATE MAIL FROM SOME FLOUNDER
Mercury in Fish – Which Fish, and Why?

See more articles about Agriculture, Fish and Food

 

Movies about
FOOD / NUTRITION

All Jacked Up (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: How jacked up do our kids have to get before they notice what we're doing to them? This film is an angst-driven portrait of four teenagers who discover the truth about their obsessive, addictive, and emotion-fueled eating habits, all enabled by their parents, schools, and our abusive food system that profits from them with no regard to their well-being. This frank and witty look at what's really going on inside the bodies, hearts and minds of the teen generation is a wake-up call to stand up and demand change.

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Learn more at the film's web site

Chocolat (2000)

See Grinning Planet review

Fast Food Nation (2006) (Docu-drama)

Starring: Greg Kinnear, Wilmer Valderrama, Avril Lavigne, Kris Kristofferson

DESCRIPTION: Based on the acclaimed book by Eric Schlosser, this film traces the birth of an everyday, ordinary hamburger through a chain of riveting, interlocking human stories—from perilous work in meat-packing plants to life behind the fast-food counters to the dirty secrets of fast-food corporations. What exactly are we biting into?

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Or learn more at the film's web site

Food, Inc. (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Food, Inc. lifts the shroud from our nation's food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that has been hidden from the American consumer—with the consent of the USDA and FDA. Our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations and captured bureaucrats that routinely put profit ahead of consumer health, farmer livelihoods, worker safety, and pollution standards. Food, Inc. reveals surprising and often shocking truths about what we eat, how it's produced, and who we have become as a nation.

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Forks Over Knives (2011) (Documentary)

REVIEW: The premise of the film Forks Over Knives is that people can avoid or improve heart disease, obesity, Type II diabetes, and other serious health conditions simply by avoiding junk food and eating a plant-based, whole-foods diet. True, but there's a catch. Read Grinning Planet's review of Forks Over Knives

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See clips or get purchase info at the film's website

Good Food (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: A collection of 16 short films on food and sustainability. From singing peanuts to teenage tomato-growers, the shorts will make you laugh, make you think, and inspire you to take action for a healthy, sustainable, and delicious future.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

View trailer at the Organic Consumers Association web site

King Corn (2007) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Many of the ways we consume corn are obvious enough: corn on the cob and canned corn ... pop corn and corn chips ... corn bread and taco shells. But there are some insidious ways we eat the stuff, most notably via meat consumption and corn sweeteners. The scale of the corn-related food economy in the US is hard for the average person to fathom, but King Corn feeds us the complex truth of corn in a manner that is entertaining and educational....  Read full review of King Corn

... or check out DVD on Amazon.com

Super Size Me (2004)

Sustainable Table  What's On Your Plate?   (2007) (Documentary)

See description under Agriculture

Sweet Remedy (2006) (Documentary)
The World Reacts to an Adulterated Food Supply

DESCRIPTION: Hundreds of millions of dollars are spent selling neuro-toxic food additives to the public. In the United States and through each nation within its global corporate grasp, maintaining a healthy mind and body has almost become an act of civil disobedience. Sweet Remedy demonstrates how US regulators have helped give birth to numerous toxins in our food supply.

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Two Angry Moms (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: In the face of a national child-health crisis, Two Angry Moms asks: What are our children eating in school and how is it impacting their learning, behavior, and health? The film chronicles the efforts of leaders in the fledgling "better school food" movement as they take on the system nationwide.. See what happens when fed-up moms start a grass-roots revolution!

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Learn more at the film's web site

We Feed the World (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Close to 1 billion of the nearly 7 billion people on earth are starving worldwide. But the food we are currently producing could feed 12 billion people. This is a film about food and globalization, the flow of goods and cash flow—a film about scarcity amid plenty. Interviewed are not only fishermen, farmers, agronomists, biologists and the UN's Jean Ziegler, but also the director of production at Pioneer, the world's largest seed company, as well as Peter Brabeck, Chairman and CEO of Nestlé International, the largest food company in the world.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com or at Bullfrog Films

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

THIRD TIME’S THE CHARMIN
Increase Your Food Security — and Save Money and Improve Nutritional Intake

THE POT OF GOLDEN GLOW AT THE END OF THE RAINBOW DIET
The Rainbow Diet — Eating a Variety of Colors Improves Health

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
FORESTS / RAINFORESTS / TREES

Big Trees, The (1952)

Starring: Kirk Douglas, K.D. Aubert

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Burning Season, The (1994) (TV movie)

Emerald Forest, The (1985)

Ferngully: The Last Rainforest (1992)

Ferngully 2 (1992)

Great Bear Rainforest (2001) (TV movie)

Green Chain, The (2007)

Starring: Tricia Helfer, Tahmoh Penikett, Brendan Fletcher, et al

DESCRIPTION: The Green Chain examines a community and a way of life through a series of inter-linking monologues inspired by the true tales and personalities that define today's forests. They all love trees—the logger and the logging company executive; the tree sitter, the tree hugger, and the protester; and the firefighter combating forest fires. The Green Chain explores conflicts between people on all sides of the battle for the trees.

Check it out at the film's web site

Grey Owl (1999)

Starring: Pierce Brosnan, Stewart Bick, Vlasta Vrana, Annie Galipeau

DESCRIPTION: In the 1930s, upon realizing that the woods of the great north are slowly vanishing, a frontier trapper decides to fight for the land he loves. From the Director of Gandhi and the Executive Producer of Dances With Wolves and A River Runs Through It.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Guardian of the Wilderness (a.k.a. Mountain Man) (1976)

Starring: Denver Pyle, John Dehner, Ken Berry

Based on the true story of Galen Clark, who, along with John Muir, worked to preserve America's greatest natural wonders, most notably Yosemite National Park.

In Search of the Pantanal (2000)

DESCRIPTION: This adventure/nature documentary follows an expedition across the world's largest wetlands, Brazil's Pantanal. Famous for its varied birds and wildlife, the Pantanal is a fascinating place, full of natural beauty and thriving ecosystem. The film gives the viewer a rich mosaic of this unique land, from its exotic wildlife to the fascinating people who live there.

Check out VHS on Amazon.com

Lorax, The (1972)

Man Who Planted Trees, The (1987)

Animated; Director: Frédéric Back; Writer: Jean Giono

REVIEW: This animated short film is a story about a shepherd's long and successful singlehanded effort to re-forest a desolate valley. The sense of mystery about the shepherd and his unflappable approach to life give the film a warm, intriguing feel, and the plot pacing ensures the viewer's attention never wanders. The animation style is wonderfully blurry and impressionistic, adding to the enigmatic effect. You won't regret giving this film a half-hour of your time.

Watch this movie about forests for free

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Medicine Man (1992)

Once Upon a Forest (1993)

Taking Root: The Vision of Wangari Maathai (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Taking Root tells the dramatic story of Wangari Maathai, a Kenyan woman whose simple act of planting trees—LOTS of trees—grew into a nationwide movement to safeguard the environment, protect human rights, and defend democracy.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Watch trailer or get more info at the film's web site

Trouble in High Timber Country (1980) (TV movie)

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

“TOUCAN PLAY AT THAT GAME” SAID THE RAINFOREST RECREATION DIRECTOR
Causes, Effects, Costs of Forest and Rainforest Destruction

SAVING THE FOREST FROM THE TREES...
THAT LUMBER AND PAPER COMPANIES CUT DOWN

Saving Old-Growth Forests Through Smart Lumber and Paper Choices

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
GARDENING, LANDSCAPING, LAWN CARE

Garden, The (2008) (Documentary)

Starring: Danny Glover, Daryl Hannahm, Antonio Villaraigosa

DESCRIPTION: The Garden examines the famous political and social battle over the largest community garden in the US, located in south central Los Angeles—before it was bulldozed by the city for a developer's project. The film shows how the politics of power and greed—backroom deals, land development, green politics, and money—tragically trumped the needs of working class families, who had found a community solution to providing a resilient, affordable way of putting wholesome food on the table.

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Garden's Family, A (1995)

Greenfingers (2000)

Grow Your Own Vegetables ( ) (How-To)
Seven Easy Steps to Your Own Backyard Produce Deparment

DESCRIPTION: As the economic storm worsens and food costs continue rise, there's never been a better time to grow some of your own vegetables. This DVD explains the simplest ways to turn lawns into gardens—how to build up and condition soil; how to maximize the output of your garden, even if you have a confined space; how to organically treat pests; how to deal with water issues; how to harvest and store your vegetables, as well as tricks for extending the growing season.

Check out DVD at Amazon.com

Healing Gardens of New York, The ( ) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: This 55-minute documentary chronicles gardens that have changed neighborhoods and transformed lives, making it clear that, in New York, the best gardens reach out. The film speaks to the importance of green spaces as a source of stability and emotional well being—something that is often overlooked in a city dominated by steel, glass, jackhammers, and cranes.

Learn more at the film's website

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

“WORKING WITH NATURE” vs. “DEATH BY A THOUSAND CHEMICALS”
Good Organic Gardening Tips for Vegetables, Lawns, and Flowers

WHO KNOWS WHAT SAVINGS LURK IN THE HEARTS OF SHADOWS?
Wall Shade Trellis Plan – Save Energy, Lower Air Conditioning Bill

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
GENETIC ENGINEERING / GMOS

Bad Seed: The Truth About Our Food (2006) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Interviews of anti-GMO activists and scientists; information about the dangers of genetically modified food and the tactics used by GMO corporations to keep their products on the shelves and out of the news. An informative, sobering array of reasons to be afraid of GMOs.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

View online at the film's web site

Brave New World (1980, TV movie)

DESCRIPTION: Brave New World  portrays a future where parents-to-be routinely use genetic engineering to pick the physical and mental characteristics of their soon-to-be offspring. Things have also evolved into a complicated caste system to create a weird techno-society, with ego and bigotry featuring prominently. Based on the classic novel by Aldous Huxley.

Corn (2002)

Frankenfish (2004)

Starring: Tory Kittles, K.D. Aubert

REVIEW: The movie makes this page only because of its title, which plays on the anti-GMO slogan "Frankenfood." In this case, the Franken-fright is the Northern Snakehead, genetically altered to monstrous, man-eating proportions. It's Jaws meets Anaconda. Decent but not essential.

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Future of Food, The (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Offers an in-depth investigation into the disturbing truth behind the unlabeled, patented, genetically engineered foods that have quietly filled US grocery store shelves for the past decade.

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Learn more at the film's website

Gattaca (1997)

Starring: Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman

REVIEW: Part 1984, part Brave New World, the movie Gattaca shows us a world where a person's life is determined by a "genetic litmus test"—and enforcement is rigorous. Those with inferior genes need not apply ... at least not for anything as cool as a manned mission to Saturn. Ethan Hawke's character is indeed one of the inferiors, but he has a plan to beat the genotype-driven totalitarian system and get his dream journey to the ringed planet. But, of course, there are complications—including Uma Thurman. While it's not as out-and-out scary as Orwell's 1984 and it's not as fresh as Brave New World—originally penned by a visionary Aldous Huxley in 1932—Gattaca is still great sci-fi. It's well worth the two hours you'll spend being intrigued and entertained by it.

Check out DVD/VHS Amazon.com

Jurassic Park (1993)

Life Running Out of Control (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: From the loss of biodiversity to health scares about GM food, the effects of genetic technology are prompting more and more debate. This documentary takes an intelligent look at both sides of the issue.

Learn more or purchase at Journeyman Pictures

Mimic (1997)

Mutations, The (1973)

World According To Monsanto, The (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Monsanto's controversial past combines some of the most toxic products ever sold with misleading reports, pressure tactics, collusion, and attempted corruption. They now race to genetically engineer (and patent) the world's food supply, which profoundly threatens our health, environment, and economy. Combining secret documents with first-hand accounts by victims, scientists, and politicians, this widely praised film exposes why Monsanto has become the world's poster child for malignant corporate influence in government and technology.

Watch free online at YouTube

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

THE GROWING DRUG PROBLEM DOWN ON THE PHARM
Biopharming — Pharmaceutical Crops and the Danger to Our Food Supply

HOLLYWOOD FASHION NIGHTMARE:  “MANDATORY UNIFORMS ON OSCAR NIGHT!”
Everyday Clothing and the Benefits of Organic Cotton

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
GLOBAL WARMING / CLIMATE CHANGE

Age of Stupid, The (2009)

Starring: Pete Postlethwaite

A man living alone in the devastated future world of 2055 looks at film footage from 2008 and asks: why didn't we stop climate change when we had the chance?

Check it out at the film's web page

Burn Up (2008) (TV)

Starring: Bradley Whitford, Neve Campbell, Rupert Penry-Jones

A BBC drama that sees oil company executives, environmental activists and politicians collide in the battle between economic success and ecological responsibility.

Check it out at this BBC web page

Category 7: The End of the World (2005)

Starring: Gina Gershon, Cameron Daddo

REVIEW: Super-severe tornados and hurricanes set about wiping out the world's major cities. Is global warming to blame? Well, it's a little more complicated that that, but the answer and the action are presented in an engaging way, albeit with the normal amount of over-Hollywooded silliness. If you enjoyed The Day After Tomorrow, you'll like this too.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Day After Tomorrow, The (2004)

Starring: Dennis Quaid, Jake Gyllenhaal

REVIEW: What happens if the most pessimistic predictions of the gloomiest global-warming doomsayers turn out to be right? See for yourself in this movie! It's a Hollywood-ization of the climate-change problem, for sure, but the overdramatization and over-compressed timeline of the disastrous effects can be excused—the special effects and shear epic-ness of the presentation are well worth the viewing time.

See GP's review of The Day After Tomorrow  science

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Everything’s Cool (2007) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION:  Everything's Cool  is a toxic comedy about the dangerous chasm that exists between scientific understanding and political action on the topic of global warming. While industry-funded naysayers sing their swan song of scientific doubt and deception, a group of self-appointed global warming messengers are on a life-or-death quest to help the public go from understanding the urgency of the problem to creating the political will necessary to push for a new energy economy. From the director of Blue Vinyl.

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Fire Next Time, The (1993, TV Movie)

Great Warming, The
(2003, TV documentary; updated and recut for 2006 theatrical release)

DESCRIPTION: Just as other generations spoke of a Great Plague and a Great Depression, our children will be compelled to endure The Great Warming—and find a way to conquer its consequences. The Great Warming, filmed in eight countries on four continents and endorsed by dozens of the world's leading scientists, aims to show that the consequences of global warming are already being felt around the world.

Get more info at the film's web site

Ice (1998, TV Movie)

Starring: Grant Show

REVIEW: Before there was The Day After Tomorrow, there was Ice. Unlike the former, the cause of the sudden northern-hemisphere freeze-over in Ice is not greenhouse-gassifying mankind, but climate-shifting solar flares on the sun. Within days, only a few people in Los Angeles remain unfrozen, including (of course) the main characters, who are duped by a prominent scientist into helping him reach a rendezvous point for an escape boat. Ice lacks the glitzy special effects of The Day After Tomorrow, and environmental aspects are generally missing from the film, but there are enough interesting insights into human nature to make it worth seeing.

Ice Age 2: The Meltdown (2006) (Animated)

REVIEW: Forget about this film's barely green creds; the slapstick action, funny dialogue, and lovable characters make Ice Age: The Melting very entertaining just as a movie....  Read full review of Ice Age 2: The Meltdown

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Inconvenient Truth, An  (2006) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Whatever you thought of Al Gore as a politician, you'll have to give him credit here for being a great teacher. He spends most of his time in An Inconvenient Truth guiding us through the data and science of climate change, demonstrating cause and effect and noting the impacts, both present and future—and doing so with wit, charm, and only an occasional (though deserved) political barb. Though this is largely a speaker-on-stage style documentary, it's backed by great pictures, charts, and graphs, with cutaways to on-site footage and personal annecdotes, all woven together in a way that makes the whole thing very watchable. Gore's three-decade-long study of climate change shows in his seemingly effortless presentation of the material. The result is 100% convincing, showing climate change to be not just an environmental issue, but a threat to our way of life—perhaps even to life itself. This is the last nail in the coffin of the climate skeptics.

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Get more info at the film's web site

Out Of Balance (2007) (Documentary)
ExxonMobil's Impact on Climate Change

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Check it out at the film's web site

Rising Waters  (2000) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: For 7 million people living on thousands of islands scattered across the Pacific ocean, global warming is not something that looms in the distant future—it's a threat whose first effects have already begun. Through personal stories of Pacific Islanders, Rising Waters puts a human face on the international climate change debate.

Check it out at Bullfrog Films

Six Degrees Could Change the World (2007) (Documentary)

Narrated by: Alec Baldwin

DESCRIPTION: NASA climate scientist James Hansen cautions that a global temperature increase of even two degrees Celsius represents a tipping point into a catastrophic climate scenario. This film ups the ante from there, postulating the effects of a six-degree increase—in sync with the higher range of scientists' warming predictions. Six Degrees explores the likely expansion of bad trends that are already troublesome under today's minor temperature increases: increasing desertification, forest stress, wild fires, and drought-stricken farmlands; disappearance of glaciers and ice caps; deforestation in the Amazon; increasing frequency of killer hurricanes like Katrina.

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Too Hot Not to Handle  (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Heat waves. Melting glaciers. Rising sea levels. Catastrophic storms. Migrating viruses. Population displacement. Over the past 100 years, the mass consumption of fossil fuels, especially in America, has contributed to a dangerous warming of the earth that will adversely impacted the way we live. This cautionary documentary offers a guide to the coming effects of global warming in the United States.

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Grinning Planet Features in This Category

YOUR TIN FOIL HAT WON’T SHIELD YOU FROM CLIMATE DISRUPTION
Global Warming Hoaxes and Conspiracies

“AND HOW ’BOUT THE GLOBAL WARMING FROM THAT RAY GUN, PAL?”
The Day The Earth Stood Still — A Global Warming Comic Strip

THE HEAT IS ON ... YOU ... TO TAKE ACTION
Global Warming Solutions — Actions You Can Take to Mitigate Climate Change

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Environmental Movies about
GLOBALIZATION / GLOBAL TRADE

Battle in Seattle (2008)

Starring: Martin Henderson, Michelle Rodriguez, Woody Harrelson, Charlize Theron, Ray Liotta

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Learn more at the film's web site

Girl in the Café, The (2005)

Starring: Bill Nighy, Kelly Macdonald

REVIEW: Romantic drama that ... includes a clearheaded portrayal of one of the seamy sides of the globalization juggernaut—the G-8 summit.  Read full review of The Girl in the Cafe

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I Witness (2003)

Starring: Jeff Daniels, James Spader, Portia di Rossi, Claudio Castillo

REVIEW: A human rights observer (Daniels) visits Mexico to monitor an important unionization vote at a factory run by a US-owned Fortune 500 company. When 27 bodies are discovered in a collapsed tunnel nearby, the police blame it on a local drug lord. But something isn't right about the story. Though I recommend I Witness mostly as a good, suspenseful thriller, the incorporation of a maquiladora and the corrupt forces that work against laborers' interests adds an insightful angle and warrants the movie's inclusion here.

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Independent America: The Two-Lane Search for Mom & Pop (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: The last several decades have witnessed the competitive slaughter of America's small, independent retailers at the hands of corporate mega-marts and other "Big Box stores." This film shows how small business is clawing its way back as Americans look to shore up their local communities in the face of outrageous corporate scandals, the daunting side-effects of globalization, and even the fear of terrorism.

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No Logo (2003)

Spectre of Hope, The (2000)

Wal-Mart – The High Cost of Low Price (2005) (Documentary)

See review under Fair Trade/Worker Rights

Also see: Fair Trade/Labor Rights Movies

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

WANNA TRADE THAT HO-HO FOR THESE
GENETICALLY MODIFIED CARROT STICKS?

WTO Impact on Food and Environment

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Environmental Movies about
MINING  (Mineral Mining, Coal Mining, Coal Issues)

Avatar (2009)

Starring: Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver, Stephen Lang

REVIEW: In the future, an earth corporation is mining the rare ores of planet Pandora, against the wishes of the native people (the Na'vi) who live on the lush, mysterious planet. Jake, a paraplegic war veteran, is given the assignment of infiltrating the Na'vi using real-life avatar technology. He is to gain the trust of the tribe so he can convince them to move on and not resist the next phase of the mining operation. Just in case they don't, he is also to gather intelligence for the mining operation's security chief, who is already planning an attack. The "mining royally screws up a place" theme is here big-time, but this is an environmental film on a much deeper level. It explores how our connection to our surroundings is much deeper than we perceive, masked by the machinery and machinations of modern living. Combine the subtle but deep messaging with a good plot, great action, and stunning cinematography and special effects, and it's no wonder this film quickly became the highest box-office gross in history.

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Baraka (1992)

Black Diamonds (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Black Diamonds charts the alarming increase of large mountaintop coal mines in Appalachia. These mammoth operations have covered 1,200 miles of headwater streams with mining waste, polluting local water sources; demolished thousands of acres of hardwood forest; and flattened hundred of Appalachian mountain peaks, covering nearby homes and furnishings in thick, unceasing layers of coal dust. Citizen testimony and visual documentation are interwoven with the perspectives of government officials, activists, and scientists to create riveting portrait of an American region fighting for its life—caught between the grinding wheels of the national appetite for cheap energy and an enduring sense of Appalachian culture, pride, and natural beauty.

Get more info at the film's web site

Burning the Future: Coal in America (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: The US energy policy increasingly includes "more coal," proffered as a "home-grown energy solution" without regard to the devastation caused by its extraction. Faced with toxic ground water, the obliteration of 1.4 million acres of mountains and hundreds of miles of streams, as well as government appeasement of industry, West Virginia activists demonstrate a strength of purpose and character in their improbable fight to arouse the nation's help in protecting their mountains, saving their families, and preserving their way of life.

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Learn more at the film's web site

See LinkTV's interview with the filmmaker (includes clips)

Cave In (2003) (TV Movie)

Starring: Mimi Rogers, Ted Shackelford

DESCRIPTION: A cave in threatens the lives of four miners, including a father and son.

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Coal Country (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: In the US, coal is the source for half of America's electricity, and few of us think much about it. But in Appalachia, miners and residents are locked in conflict, with one side saying coal operations are essential to providing good jobs, and the other saying it's destroying the land, water, and air? Facing death threats and violence, Mari-Lynn Evans persevered in making a film that shows both sides of the conflict.

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Check out movie or watch trailer at film's web site

Deep Down (2010) (Documentary)
A Story from the Heart of Coal Country

DESCRIPTION: In Appalachia, coal is the number one industry, with an enormous influence on local economies and people. At the same time, few Americans know about mountaintop removal mining (MTR), nor have any knowledge that their own demand for power is directly impacting the mountains, water, and sky. By tracing the power lines from our homes back to Appalachia, the source of much of that power, Deep Down puts a human face on the consequences of MTR.

Check it out at the film's web site

Fire Down Below (1997)

Starring: Steven Segal, Kris Kristofferson

REVIEW: EPA agent Jack Taggart battles a group of Kentucky baddies who are illegally using coal mines to store toxic waste. The message is pro-environment, though there is so much stuff exploding in this movie that it can't exactly be called eco-friendly. Nonetheless, Segal's heart is in the right place. And there is a happy ending, too. :-)

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Harlan County, U.S.A. (1976)

Harlan County War (2001)

Starring: Holly Hunter, Stellan Skarsgard, Ted Levine

DESCRIPTION: Holly Hunter stars as Ruby, the wife of a coal miner in Harlan County, Kentucky. After two senseless deaths, the union calls a strike against the mining company. What follows is one of the most violent, bitter and notorious union battles in history. With no end to the violence in sight, Ruby decides to fight the company her own way. Based on a true story.

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In Memory of the Land and People (1977) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: This film explores the devastating effects of strip mining coal on life in Appalachia, showing how the practice has destroyed mountains; animals and plants; and people's homes and lives. The film combines striking visual images with interviews of residents talking about how mining has affected their lives.

For DVD purchase info, see this web page

Inheritance: A Fisherman's Story (2003)

DESCRIPTION: In 2000, the Hungarian river Tisza was flooded with tons of cyanide from an nearby gold mine. Fishermen like Balazs Meszaros struggled to survive. In an effort to save his people and their way of life, Meszaros travels to Australia to confront the mining company responsible for destroying his livelihood.

Libby, Montana (2004) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: This film covers the epic trial in which it was proved that WR Grace Company knew for years that conditions in its asbestos mining operations in Libby, Montana were a severe health hazard, but they did nothing to correct the problem or warn their employees. Once nailed, the company declared bankruptcy to wall off their profits from the damages claim, leaving a nightmarish legacy of death, disease, and destitution in Libby.

North Country (2005)

Starring: Charlize Theron, Woody Harrelson, Frances McDormand, Sean Bean

REVIEW: This film is really about misogyny, sexual harassment, and underdogs fighting back, and only a little bit about coal-mining. North Country could just as easily have been set on an oil derrick, in a meat processing plant, or in some other rough, male-dominated environment. Nonetheless, the film is based on a true, precedent-setting case that did involve a coal company, are there are many shots of the mining operation. Plus, it's a great movie with great performances... So we think it deserves a mention here.

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Our Land, Our Life ( ) (Documentary)

Also released as American Outrage

DESCRIPTION: This movie documents the struggle of two Western Shoshone elders to address the threat mining development poses to the sacred and environmentally sensitive lands of Crescent Valley, Nevada. Since 1972, they have been working to protect their lands from the United States' gradual encroachment and utter usurpation.

Read more about it at Santa Cruz IMC

Out of the Black (2001)

Silver City (2004)

See review under Politics & Media

Split Estate (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: As the natural-gas drilling boom in the Rocky Mountain West swung into high gear in the 2000s, many homeowners had to face the shocking truth: that they don't own the mineral rights under their land. Energy companies often set up drill rigs and pumping operations just a few hundred feet from homes, and often in dangerous proximity to well-water sources. Distressed homeowners found they had little or no recourse to protect their homes, land, and drinking water from such development.

Check out DVD on the film's web site

Trouble in High Timber Country (1980) (TV movie)

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

ALL THAT GLITTERS IS NOT GOLD; IT MAY BE CYANIDE
Gold Mining and Processing – The High Cost of Gold Jewelry

OLD KING COAL WAS A NASTY OLD SOUL... AND A NASTY OLD SOUL HAD HE
Impact of Coal Mining and Coal Power

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Environmental Movies about
NATURE OF MAN

Koyaanisqatsi (1982)

DESCRIPTION (Wikipedia): The film consists primarily of slow motion and time-lapse photography of cities and many natural landscapes across the United States. The visual tone poem contains neither dialogue nor a vocalized narration: its tone is set by the juxtaposition of images and music. In the Hopi language, the word Koyaanisqatsi means 'crazy life, life in turmoil, life out of balance, life disintegrating, a state of life that calls for another way of living', and the film implies that modern humanity is living in such a way.

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Check out sequels:  Powaqqatsi (1988),  Naqoyqatsi (2002)

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

WE REALLY ARE MADE OF EARTH, AIR, FIRE AND WATER—
AND MAYBE A LITTLE GAS

Ancient Wisdom – The Elemental Aspect of Human Nature

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Environmental Movies about
NUCLEAR ENERGY, SAFETY, AND WARFARE

Amazing Grace and Chuck (1987)

Atomic Twister (2002) (TV movie)

Starring: Sharon Lawrence, Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Corbin Bernsen

REVIEW: Nuclear power plants have all the dangerous stuff inside containment vessels, right? So if a tornado hit the plant, no problem, right? This B+ made-for-TV movie explores the ways in which that might be wrong, and in spite of an occasional lapse into the type of silly character behavior that only Hollywood writers can dream up, the movie does a creditable job of keeping us entertained and reminding us that there is no such thing as "disaster-proof."

Chernobyl Heart (2003) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Perhaps you think the risks associated with nuclear energy are minimal (or at least acceptable). To you I say, watch this film. Or perhaps you think that nuclear energy is "a bit unsafe" but, given the likely energy shortfalls of the future, use of nuclear in a necessary evil. To you I say, watch this film. Wrap your brain around the vast geographical area (including 99% of Belarus) that is still contaminated by the radioactive fallout from the Chernobyl accident. Force your eyeballs to endure the heartache of so many deformed children—the "collateral damage." THEN see if you still think nuclear energy is acceptable. Though it's hard to watch, this is a very important film.

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Learn more at the Chernobyl Children's Project

China Syndrome, The (1979)

Starring: Jane Fonda, Jack Lemmon, Michael Douglas

DESCRIPTION: While doing a series of reports on alternative energy sources, an opportunistic reporter witnesses an accident at a nuclear power plant. Wells is determined to publicise the incident but soon finds herself entangled in a sinister conspiracy to keep the full impact of the incident a secret.

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Day After, The (1983)

Starring: Jason Robards, JoBeth Williams, Steve Guttenberg, John Lithgow

DESCRIPTION: When Cold War tensions reach the ultimate boiling point, the inhabitants of a small town in Kansas learn, along with the rest of America, that they have fewer than 30 minutes before 300 Soviet warheads begin to appear overhead. Can anyone survive this ultimate nightmare...or the nuclear winter that is sure to follow? This was the most watched TV-movie special of all time.

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Dr. Strangelove
Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb   (1964)

Starring: Peter Sellers, George C. Scott

REVIEW: Dr. Strangelove is Stanley Kubrick's satirical masterpiece about the Cold War and nuclear annihilation. Peter Sellers' and George C. Scott's performances are superb, and the movie finds the perfect blend of satire, thriller, and out-right comedy. The film's message about hyper-patriotic paranoia gone wildly wrong remains relevant in today's militaristic environment.

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Doomwatch: Winter Angel (1999) (TV movie)

Downwind (2002)

Edge of Darkness (1985)

DESCRIPTION: Edge of Darkness is a British television drama serial, originally broadcast in six 55-minute episodes. A mixture of crime drama, political thriller, and science fiction, it revolves around the efforts of a policeman to unravel the truth behind the brutal killing of his daughter. The investigations soon lead the cop into a murky world of government and corporate cover-ups and nuclear espionage, pitting him against dark forces that threaten the future of life on Earth.  Read full description at Wikipedia

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Fail-Safe (1964)

Helen's War (2004) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Dr Helen Caldicott, firebrand anti-nuclear campaigner, celebrated author and Nobel Peace Prize nominee, is too alarmed to retire. She's certain that the White House's War on Terror is escalating the global nuclear arms race. Set against the volatile backdrop of the Afghanistan and Iraq invasions, Helen's War  tracks Caldicott's activities as she vies with spin-savvy neo-conservatives for airtime, courts celebrity backers for her DC think-tank, and battles to stop the bombing of Baghdad. Winner of "Best Documentary," 2004 Sydney Film Festival.

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On the Beach (1959)

Poison Dust (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: US use of radioactive "Depleted Uranium" weapons has increased six-fold from 1991 to Gulf War II, and the results are predictably disturbing. Subtitled "A Close Look at the Dangers of Radioactive Depleted Uranium Weapons To Innocent Civilians & Our Own Troops," Poison Dust tells the story of mysterious ailments related to the use of depleted-uranium weapons in Iraq and elsewhere.

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Silent Running (1972)

Starring: Bruce Dern

DESCRIPTION: In this far-sighted film, Bruce Dern is a crew member on a specially designed "biodome spaceship" that harbors Earth's last nature reserve—intended to refurbish an Earth devastated by nuclear war. When he is instructed to jettison his beloved forests and return home, he goes renegade. Accompanied only by three robots, he ponders the fate of this last pocket of nature and the murders of his fellow crew members.

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Silkwood (1983)

Strangest Dream, The (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Nuclear physicist Joseph Rotblat was branded a traitor and spy after walking away from the Manhattan Project, which went on to build the first atomic bomb. But, with Bertrand Russell, Rotblat later helped create the modern peace movement and eventually won a Nobel Peace Prize. The Strangest Dream tells Rotblat's story, the history of nuclear weapons, and the efforts of the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs—which he co-founded—to halt nuclear proliferation.

Check out DVD at Bullfrog Films

Sum of All Fears, The (2002)

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)

Testament (1983)

Thirteen Days (2000)

Threads (1984) (TV movie)

War Game, The (1965)

WarGames (1983)

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

AVOIDING AN UNHEALTHY GLOW
Supplements for Nuclear Radiation Exposure

ATTACK OF THE 50-FOOT ENERGY PLAN
Nuclear Revival — More Nuke Plants and Other Horrors

See more articles about Energy

 

Environmental Movies about
ORGANIC

Garden's Family, A (1995)

Dr. Bronner's Magic Soapbox (2007) (Documentary)
A Human Story About a Socially Responsible Company

DESCRIPTION: Dr. Emanuel Bronner was a master soapmaker, self-proclaimed rabbi, and, allegedly, Albert Einstein's nephew. In 1947, after escaping from a mental institution, he invented the formula for "Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap," a peppermint-infused, all-natural, multi-purpose liquid that can be found today in every American health food store. A human story about a socially responsible company, Dr. Bronner's Magic Soapbox documents the complicated family legacy behind the counterculture's favorite cleaning product.

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Check it out at the film's web site

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

“I’LL HAVE THE ORGANIC DRAGONBURGER WITH A SIDE OF LIES”
Organic Myths ... and Realities about Organic Food and Agriculture

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Environmental Movies about
PEAK OIL

Blind Spot (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Blind Spot analyzes the inextricable link between the energy we use, the way we run our economy, and the effect it has had on our environment. Taking as a starting point the inevitable energy depletion scenario know as Peak Oil, it demonstrates we are at a crossroad of two paths, both with dire consequences. If we continue to burn fossil fuels our ecology will collapse, but if we don't, our economy will. Either path we choose will have a profound effect on our way of life.

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Watch free online at IMDB/Snag Films

Blood and Oil  (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: The film asserts that oil motivates America's military engagements in the Middle East (and more recently in central Asia). It unearths declassified documents and highlights forgotten passages in prominent presidential doctrines to show how concerns about oil have been at the core of American foreign policy for more than 60 years—rendering our contemporary energy and military policies virtually indistinguishable.

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CoLLapse (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Americans generally believe that a future of abundant clean energy can replace today's waning dirty oil and that fresh thinking will set the economy straight. Michael Ruppert knows better. A former LAPD detective turned independent reporter, he predicted both trouble with oil and the current financial crisis. In Collapse, Ruppert recounts his career as a radical thinker and spells out the crises he sees ahead. He draws upon the same news reports and data available to any internet user, but he applies a unique interpretation and doesn't hold back on his thoughts about the apocalypse we face—the collapse of industrial civilization.

Check out at the film's web site

Crude Awakening, A  The Oil Crash   (2007) (Documentary)

REVIEW: A Crude Awakening serves as an excellent introduction to the subject of Peak oil and all of the related topics—the huge rise in human population numbers, locations, and living standards made possible by cheap and abundant petroleum products; the economic risk related to high oil prices and fuel shortages; the problems inherent in non-renewables like coal and nuclear and the challenges facing alternatives like ethanol, biodiesel, wind, solar, and hydrogen; the ultimate likely impact of "energy descent" on our modern way of life; and the politics of petroleum, including war for oil. The film puts the story together in a cogent, comprehensive way, leaving those who already know about Peak Oil with an expanded, reinvigorated understanding of the subject and provides newbies with a clear picture of a complex topic that promises to change life as we know it.

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Crude Impact (2006) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Crude Impact is straightforward and thorough introduction to Peak Oil and our incredibly deep dependence on petroleum products. For veteran peakists, the film will add some new background regarding the history of oil production, particularly the dirty dealings of major oil companies. There are also a few fresh faces that haven't appeared in many Peak Oil films before—Thom Hartmann, William Rees, Christopher Flavin, Michael Economides—and they help round out our thinking on the topic....
Read full review of Crude Impact

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End of Suburbia, The (2004) (Documentary)

See description/review under Sprawl

Escape From Suburbia (2007) (Documentary)

See description/review under Sprawl

Garden, The (2008) (Documentary)

See listing under Gardening

New American Century, The (2009) (Documentary)

REVIEW: This marvelous documentary starts out as just another 9-11 conspiracy movie but quickly transitions to broader territory, showing that false-flag operations have been used by the US for over a century to instigate military conflicts that further the process of building the empire; garner energy resources....

Watch online for free or read full review of The New American Century

Oil, Smoke & Mirrors (2006) (Documentary)

REVIEW: This 50-minute documentary is an excellent presentation of the facts that cast overwhelming doubt on the official story of 9/11, linking the event to a larger, unspoken geopolitical strategy that has its roots in Peak Oil, not Al Queda. This is a must-see for any citizen of the US—and the world. Available free from Ronan Doyle via Google Video.

See it free at YouTube

Oil Storm (2005) (TV movie)

REVIEW: What would happen if several disasters, one right after the other, hit the world's oil supply infrastructure? In a word, chaos—at least for those countries and people that are highly dependent on oil and gasoline. This movie envisions such a scenario using a fictionalized documentary style, simultaneously giving us story background and human-interest cases to make it feel real. Overall, it's a highly engaging film, even if they do pull their punches a little bit at the end.

Sprawling From Grace; Driven To Madness (2008) (Documentary)

See review under Sprawl

Power of Community, The  (2005) (Documentary)
How Cuba Survived Peak Oil

REVIEW: Cuba lost over half of its oil imports after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1990. This spelled disaster for its oil-dependent economy and society. But by completely reorganizaing its agricultural system and implementing many other changes in day-to-day affairs, Cuba survived. This movie does a good job of showing us how they did it—and how WE might have to do it when Peak Oil finally kicks in.

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Learn more at the film's web site

Syriana (2005)

Starring: George Clooney, Christopher Plummer, Jeffrey Wright, Chris Cooper, Matt Damon, Amanda Peet, Alexander Siddig, Tim Blake Nelson, William Hurt

REVIEW: Syriana sets out to explain to us how things really are when it comes to oil, The Middle East, and US policy, and to do so in an entertaining manner. For those of us who are watching keenly as modern industrial society begins its slow, deathly descent towards the center of the petroleum whirlpool, Syriana is a must-see....  Read full review of Syriana

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What a Way to Go — Life at the End of Empire (2007) (Documentary)

REVIEW: This is a different sort of "Peak Oil movie." Rather than just focusing on the approaching decline in oil production and its likely effects on our petroleum-powered modern lifestyles, What a Way To Go: Life at the End of Empire, presents that issue merely as a symptom of a larger problem—modern society as empire....  Read full review of What a Way to Go

Also see: Energy Movies

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

THIS INFORMATION HAS BEEN APPROVED BY OUR BRAINY FAQ-CHECKER
Peak Oil FAQ  (Frequently Asked Questions)

WE’LL GO “DIRTY DANCING” BEFORE WE GO “DANCING IN THE DARK”
Peak Oil and Environment — The Coming Environmental Impact

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Environmental Movies about
POLITICS AND MEDIA

Candidate, The (1972)

Starring: Robert Redford, Peter Boyle, Melvyn Douglas

REVIEW: Bill McKay (Redford) is an environmental and social activist with no political experience, but Democratic political handlers decide he's their best hope for defeating the senior Republican senator from California (Douglas), a silver-tongued, pro-polluter political lizard. The movie does an excellent job of showing us how difficult a beast politics is to tame, even when you start with noble intentions.

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Fire Next Time, The (1993) (Documentary)

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Learn more about the film or purchase at POV

Garden, The (2008) (Documentary)

See listing under Gardening

Fahrenheit 451 (1966)

Starring: Oskar Werner, Julie Christie, Cyril Cusack

REVIEW: In a dystopian future, The Powers That Be consider the wisdom of the written word so threatening that they have outlawed all books. Firemen, rather than putting out fires, start them—with books as the incendiary target. Montag, a fireman and the protagonist, comes to realize the horrific wrongness of "the law" and pursues a dangerous path of covert defiance. This is a stylish adaptation of Ray Bradbury's classic novel; a must-see for fans of movies with a message—or just a great thriller.

Check out Fahrenheit 451 DVD or book on Amazon.com

Hacking Democracy (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: This disturbingly shocking HBO documentary set out to ask one simple question: How does America count its votes? From Florida and California to Ohio and Washington State, the filmmakers starkly reveal a rotten system riddled with inaccuracy, incompetent election officials, and electronic voting machines that can be programmed to steal elections.

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Check out current info on voting-machine problems at the film's web site

Ida Makes a Movie (1979)

Indomitable Teddy Roosevelt, The (1986)

Insider, The (1999)

See review under Corporations & Consumerism

Orwell Rolls in His Grave (2004) (Documentary)

REVIEW: An excellent film that documents the demise of investigative journalism and the rise of plutocratic, propagandized corporate media. As spot-on today as it was when it was filmed in 2004—if anything, the propagandists' grip has tightened—this movie lays out the facts of how the loss of an independent press jeopardizes democracy.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Watch it for free via Google Video

Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch’s War on Journalism (2004, doc.)

REVIEW: The team behind Outfoxed created a system to monitor Fox News 24 hours a day for months to discover exactly how its shows worked and document bias in its coverage. They interviewed ex-Fox employees, who spilled the beans about top-down story direction and spin control from Rupert Murdoch and his lieutenants. They found scores of clips showing Fox anchors saying things on camera that are astonishingly contrary to good journalistic principles. Outfoxed shows that Fox News is anything BUT "fair and balanced." The film could have benefitted from a deeper, more general discussion of general journalistic decline at the hands of corporate owners—Fox is not the only news outlet that's a mess; it's just the worst. But the main point of the movie comes through very clearly—that Fox's "news" is nothing of the sort. It's "Foxaganda"—establishment talking points, conservative views, and Grand Old Party banter masqerading as news.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Watch it for free at YouTube

Return of Sam McCloud, The (1989) (TV movie)

Scarred Lands and Wounded Lives: The Environmental Footprint of War (2006) (Documentary)

See description under Environmental Catastrophe

Silver City (2004)

Starring: Danny Huston, Chris Cooper, Richard Dreyfuss, Tim Roth, Daryl Hannah

REVIEW: Silver City combines sleazeball politics, environmental damage from mining, worker exploitation, land use issues, and corporate corruption into a rousing philippic on how mired we still are in a money-and-power-trump-everything-else culture. The movie portrays the gubernatorial campaign of a rising political star who is being pushed to the top by well-moneyed corporate polluters who need a not-too-bright-but-highly-electable sap to do their bidding. (Sound similar to any real-life politician you can think of?) Danny Huston's private eye character gets hired by the campaign to warn off a few grudge-laden potential campaign wreckers, but soon discovers a very ugly side to the game he's been pulled into. Beyond its political themes, Silver City manages to be a very good movie, wrapping mystery, hard-boiled action, and relationship stuff into an engaging package.

Check it out at Amazon.com (DVD)  |  (VHS)

V for Vendetta (2005)

Starring: Natalie Portman, Hugo Weaving

REVIEW: V for Vendetta artfully combines elements of such literary classics as 1984, The Count of Monte Cristo, and Phantom of the Opera with the more modern themes of terrorism and government conspiracies designed to strengthen totalitarian rule. The film so seamlessly merges its disparate genres, influences, and themes, that the result is a one of the best movies of the past decade. It's also a timely reminder about the dangers inherent in just-trust-us governments and a fearful, disengaged citizenry. We admit that there is no environmental theme here, but corrupt governments DO affect the environment. And besides, it was just too darn good not to list.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Go to movies subject index  |  Search movies at Amazon.com

Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

DOUBLETALK — TOO CLEVER BY HALF
Environmental Doublespeak — Environmental Ethics, Anti-Environmental Propaganda, and Greenwashing Language

BREAKING NEWS ON WHO’S BREAKING NEWS’S USEFULNESS
How Corporate Media News Shortchanges Our Democracy, Our Environment & Us

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
POLLUTION

Addicted to Plastic (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: From foam cups to artificial organs, plastics are perhaps the most ubiquitous and versatile material ever invented. But such progress has had a cost. Addicted To Plastic is a global journey to investigate what we really know about the "material of a thousand uses" and why there's so darn much of it. On the way, we discover a toxic legacy, and the men and women dedicated to cleaning it up.

Check out DVD at Amazon.com  or  Bullfrog Films

Enemy of the People, An (1978)

Erin Brockovich (2000)

See listing under Chemicals & Toxics

Gift (1996)

Lucia (1992)

DESCRIPTION: At dawn in a fishing village in Bataan, a tanker has just spilled oil in the night. The oil threatens not just marine life but the existence of the entire community. People and animals get sick. Many villagers leave. The film chronicles the efforts of Lucia and her family to stay in the village. But the social forces at play are too strong and Lucia is powerless to stop the disintegration of her family as they are forced into the slums of Manila.

Check it out at Bullfrog Films

Magic in the Water (1995)

Human Footprint, The (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: The Human Footprint reveals the extraordinary impact that each of our lives has on the world around us. In a playful and thought-provoking portrait, the film demonstrates what makes up an average human life today and how everything we do has impact on the world around us.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Pocket Ninjas (1997)

Rachel's Daughters: Searching for the Causes of Breast Cancer (1997)

ALSO SEE:  Chemicals  |  Air Pollution  |  Water

Movies subject index  |  Search movies at Amazon.com

Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

EARTH, AIR, WATER, AND POLLUTION—THE FOUR BASIC ELEMENTS?
Air Pollution and Water Pollution  — Are Zero Emissions Goals Realistic?

IMPURITEASE IN THE AIR AT THE TASSEL CLUB
Pollution and Health — Human Effects and Costs

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
SUBURBAN SPRAWL / URBAN SPRAWL

End of Suburbia, The (2004) (Documentary)

REVIEW: As gas prices soar and the possibility of future shortages becomes a regular mainstream-media story, questions are emerging about the sustainability of our suburban way of life. What are its prospects as global demand for fossil fuels begins to outstrip supply and the cheap-fuel underpinnings of suburbia begin to erode? The End of Suburbia is an excellent overview of the problems facing suburbanites in the coming years. It's a must-see for anyone concerned about peak oil and sprawl. The consequences of inaction in the face of this global crisis are enormous.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Learn more at the film's website

Escape From Suburbia (2007) (Documentary)

REVIEW: This sequel to The End of Suburbia extends the reach of the first film. It emphasizes the questions that each of us should be asking ourselves: "When the Peak Oil poop hits the propeller, will I be able to weather the storm in my current locale, in my current house, doing what I'm doing now? If not, what do I do about it?"...  Read full review of Escape From Suburbia

Search for DVD on Amazon.com

Inner City Blues (2002) (TV documentary)

REVIEW: This is an excellent investigation of the forces that led the United States to begin sprawling after WW II and how political, corporate, and social forces have continued to give suburban sprawl ever more momentum. Find out why the United States is the first society in history to have a greater number of people living in suburbs than in either cities or rural areas.

Get info, watch free online, or purchase at GLRC

Subdivide and Conquer: A Modern Western (1999) (TV movie)

REVIEW: This 56-minute file, narrated by Dennis Weaver, explores the consequences of sprawl. Though it focuses on the particular problems of sprawl in the American west, the growth of poorly directed, unrestrained, land-gobbling suburbs is the same everywhere in the US. And even though this film was made in the late 1990s, the housing bubble that occurred in the first half of the 2000s has made Subdivide and Conquer's themes even more pertinent today. Most importantly, near then end the movie talks about opportunities for alternative—better—types of development, noting that demand for such communities exists but is often thwarted by outmoded zoning regulations.

Check out DVD at Bullfrog Films

Sprawling from Grace, Driven To Madness (2008) (Documentary)

REVIEW: Sprawling from Grace argues that it no longer matters whether our first choice is a transition back to walkable communities, expanded mass transit in cities, and rail-based transportation networks. Without cheap, abundant oil, it's our only choice. The film's focus on workable solutions saves Sprawling from Grace from being "just another peak oil movie."... See trailer and read full review of Sprawling from Grace, Driven To Madness

Or check out DVD on Amazon.com

Subdivided: Isolation and Community in America (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: What if you moved to the suburbs only to find yourself isolated in a landscape of Big Box stores and freeways? No one talks to each other—and that's considered normal. Interviewing experts on the subject of sprawl and community, the director attempts to ferret out the mess that is the modern subdivision.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Two Square Miles (2005) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: The film tracks the conflicts that unfold as a proposed multinational coal-fired cement plant threatens to reshape the small community on the banks of the Hudson River. Hudson's colorful and passionate citizens fight to save the town's unique character and its architectural heritage, breathing life into the exercise of local democracy.

Check it out at Independent Lens

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Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

WHY ARE DEVELOPERS ALWAYS STEPPING IN COW PIES?
Sprawl, Smart Growth, Farm Land Preservation, and Open Space Preservation

“PANTS ON FIRE” AND OTHER WAYS TO SPOT A LYING POLITICIAN
The Politics of Sprawl

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
TECHNOLOGY (PROBLEMS WITH)

Public Exposure (2000) (Documentary)
DNA, Democracy and the "Wireless Revolution"

DESCRIPTION: One-hour overview of the health dangers associated with cell phones, cell towers, and other sources of radiation.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

View it free online at YouTube

Terminator, The (1984)

Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)

Terminator Salvation (2009)

ALSO SEE:  Genetic Engineering  |  Chemicals & Toxics

Go to movies subject index  |  Search movies at Amazon.com

Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

TERMINATE-US 3: RISE OF THE NANO-MACHINES?
Nanomaterials and Nanomachines — Tiny Technologies, Big Potential Problems?

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
TRASH, RECYCLING, REUSE

Manufactured Landscapes (2006)

DESCRIPTION: The film follows the journey of photographer Edward Burtynsky, whose large-scale photographs of manufactured landscapes quarries, recycling yards, factories, mines, and dams create stunning art from civilization's materials and debris. Burtynsky's photographs shift our consciousness about the world and the way we live in it, allowing us to meditate on our impact on the planet and witness both the epicenters of industrial endeavor and the dumping grounds of its waste.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Recyclergy (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: A 30-minute documentary about the rich recycling programs in the San Francisco Bay area.

Watch trailer on Vimeo

Trashed (2007) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION:  Trashed  is a provocative investigation of one of the fastest growing industries in North America: the garbage business. The film examines a fundamental element of modern American culture—the disposal of what our society defines as "waste." It is an issue influenced by every American, most of whom never consider the consequences; nor, it seems, the implications to our biosphere. At times humorous, but deeply poignant, "Trashed" examines the American waste stream fast approaching a half billion tons annually.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Go to movies subject index  |  Search movies at Amazon.com

Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

WASTED AWAY AGAIN IN MARGA-RECYCLE-VILLE
We Can  Reduce Waste  with a New Materials Economy

GLASS RECYCLING IS NOT NECESSARILY A SMASHING IDEA
Glass Bottle Packaging — Reuse vs. Recycling

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
VEHICLES AND TRANSPORTATION POLICY

Das Bus (2003)

Killing Cars (1986)

We Are Traffic! (1999) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: We Are Traffic! chronicles the history and development of the "Critical Mass" bicycle movement, one of the most spirited and dynamic social/political movements of the apathetic '90s. In over 200 cities, in 14 different countries, Critical Mass has now become a monthly ritual of reclaiming the streets by bicycle activists riding en masse. With traffic congestion, pollution, and road rage on the rise, growing numbers around the world are advocating for transportation alternatives, and Critical Mass is at the cutting edge of this mindset.

Get more info at the film's web site

Who Killed the Electric Car? (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: We have looming fossil fuel shortages, unrest in oil producing regions around the globe, and high consumer interest in hybrid electric cars. So where is the much fabled all-electric car? This film is not only the story of the squashing of the electric car, it's the story of our car culture and how it enables our continuing addiction to foreign oil; it's the story of officials who gave in to Detroit and Big Oil on adoption of the 'Zero Emission Vehicle" mandate; and finally, it's the future story of what role renewable energy and sustainable living must eventually play in our country's future.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Go to movies subject index  |  Search movies at Amazon.com

Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

“WHAT WOULD SATAN DRIVE?” AND OTHER UNFAIR QUESTIONS ABOUT SUVs
SUVs, Environmental Issues, and Other Factors to Consider

See more articles in this category

 

Environmental Movies about
WATER (INCLUDING RIVERS & DAMS, OCEANS, ETC.)

Abyss, The (1989)

Starring: Ed Harris, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Michael Biehn

DESCRIPTION: A civilian oil rig crew is recruited to conduct a search and rescue effort when a nuclear submarine mysteriously sinks. One diver (Ed Harris) soon finds himself on a spectacular odyssey 25,000 feet below the ocean's surface where he confronts a mysterious force that has the power to change the world or destroy it.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Black Wave  (2008) (Documentary)
The Legacy of the Exxon Valdez

DESCRIPTION: In the early hours of March 24th 1989, the Exxon Valdez supertanker runs aground in Alaska. It discharges millions of gallons of crude oil. The incident becomes the biggest environmental catastrophe in North American history. For 20 years, Riki Ott and the fishermen of the little town of Cordova, Alaska, have waged the longest legal battle in US history against the world's most powerful oil company—ExxonMobil. This film tells of the environmental, social, and economic consequences of the black wave that changed their lives forever.

Check out DVD on the film's website

Blue Gold: World Water Wars (2009) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Are we moving closer to a world in which water, a seemingly plentiful natural resource, could actually incite war. As water becomes an increasingly precious commodity, corrupt governments, corporations and even private investors are scrambling to control it , leaving the rest of us fighting for a substance we need to survive.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Chinatown (1974)

Starring: Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, John Hillerman, John Huston

REVIEW: Chinatown is a thrill ride though the dirty world of water planning, land grabs, and rough characters in early-20th-century Los Angeles. It's loosely based on L.A.'s move to bring water to the thirsty city from the mountains and the story of the corrupt land speculation that followed. Nicholson is fabulous as Jake Gittes, the P.I. who stumbles into the vast conspiracy but then refuses to back off. You'll probably have to watch the movie at least twice to figure it all out, but it's worth it!

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Erin Brockovich (2000)

See listing under Chemicals & Toxics

FLOW – How Did a Handful of Corporations Steal Our Water? (2008) (Documentary)   (Note: Also released as "FLOW: For Love of Water")

DESCRIPTION: Many experts point to water as the most important political and environmental issue of the 21st century. FLOW maps out the problem and gives viewers a look at the people and institutions providing practical solutions to the water crisis. But there is a serious undercurrent—a growing effort among international corporations to privatize the world's dwindling fresh water supply. FLOW identifies many of the governmental and corporate culprits behind the water grab, with an unflinching focus on politics, pollution, human rights, and the emergence of a domineering world water cartel.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Check it out at the film's web site

Grand Canyon Adventure: River at Risk (2008) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Directed by two-time Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Greg MacGillivray and narrated by Robert Redford, this IMAX 3D film takes audiences down the Colorado River, through the Grand Canyon , on an exhilarating river journey that calls attention to the world's growing water shortage and the mega-drought now threatening the American Southwest.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

See more at the film's web site

Green Green Water (2006) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Wanting to know where her electricity comes from, the film maker undertakes a trip to northern Manitoba, where the Cree peoples are coping with the environmental and cultural impact of a nearby hydroelectric dam. Despite the fact that the current dam has increased poverty and environmental devastation, there is division among the northern Manitoba Cree about whether to build more local hydroelectric-power infrastructure. Moneyed interests and their pawns vs. those trying to protect their land and traditional way of life—who will win?

Inheritance: A Fisherman's Story (2003)

See listing under Mining

Life in Ebb and Flow (2001)

DESCRIPTION: A 52-minute documentary that explores the delicate balance of creatures and plants in a vast tidal flat, the effects of pollution and development, and the efforts of conservationists to preserve the wetland.

River, The (1938)

DESCRIPTION: A short documentary film that discusses the importance of the Mississippi River to the United States.

Sea Change, A (2009) (Documentary)
Imagine A World Without Fish

DESCRIPTION: A Sea Change documents how the pH balance of the oceans has changed dramatically since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution: a 30% increase in acidification. Experts predict that over the next century, steady increases in carbon dioxide emissions and the continued rise in the acidity of the oceans will cause most of the world's fisheries to experience a total bottom-up collapse—a state that could last for millions of years. This film broadens the discussion about the dramatic changes we are seeing in the chemistry of the oceans, and conveys the urgent threat those changes pose to our survival, while surveying the steps we can take to reduce the severity of climate change.

Check out DVD at Bullfrog Films

Thirst (2004) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: Is water part of a shared "commons," a human right for all people? Or is it a commodity to be bought, sold, and traded in a global marketplace? Thirst tells the stories of communities in Bolivia, India, and the United States that are asking these fundamental questions.

Learn more at the film's web site

Up the Yangtze (2007) (Documentary)

DESCRIPTION: In China, the Yangtze River—and all of the life that surrounds it—is undergoing a truly astonishing transformation wrought by the largest hydroelectric project in history, the Three Gorges Dam. Canadian documentary filmmaker Yung Chang returns to the gorgeous, now-disappearing landscape of his grandfather's youth to trace the surreal life of a "farewell cruise" that traverses the gargantuan waterway.

Check out DVD on Amazon.com

Wild River (1960)

Starring: Montgomery Clift, Lee Remick

REVIEW: A To contain the flood-prone Tennessee River, the Tennessee Valley Authority was established in the 1930s to build dams, among other things. In Wild River, we join the action at the point where many families have been relocated in advance of completion of one of the major dams. But there is a lone holdout—Jo Van Fleet plays a common-sense octogenarian who does not define "progress" in the same way as the TVA. Montgomery Clift is the TVA agent assigned to convince her to move so the dam can be completed. Sharp dialog and realistic characters help make this film very enjoyable.

Go to movies subject index  |  Search movies at Amazon.com

Grinning Planet Articles in This Category

“JAWS V:  ANGRY BUT ENFEEBLED”
Water Pollution Effects On Animals, Humans, Plants, and Ecosystems

PUTTING WATER ON A SALT-FREE DIET
Is Desalination the Solution to Our Increasing Freshwater Shortages?

See more articles in this category

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Notify Us of an Environmental Movie

image of director's action board We know there are some great environmental movies that we still don't have listed yet. We add films as we have time, but there always seems to be a fairly sizeable queue. Wah!

In any event, we'd love for you to email us about any film you think should be added: movies@grinningplanet.com.

Because of the volume of email we get, we can't promise individual replies. But know that we thank you for your effort!

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