The 11th Hour (2007) – Industrial capitalism has brought every life-support system on Earth to the brink of collapse. A far-ranging examination of this, the most pressing crisis of our times.
Advertising at the Edge of the Apocalypse (2017) – In this highly anticipated sequel to his groundbreaking, Advertising and the End of the World, media scholar Sut Jhally explores the devastating personal and environmental fallout from advertising, commercial culture, and rampant American consumerism.
Affluenza (2007) – On the ‘ailment’ of consumerism.
After Winter, Spring (2012) – An intimate portrait of an ancestral way of life under threat in a world increasingly dominated by large-scale industrial agriculture.
The Age of Stupid (2009) – An old man living in the devastated world of 2055 watches ‘archive’ footage from 2008 and asks: Why didn’t we stop climate change while we had the chance?
All that is Solid Melts into Data (2015) – This film looks to the often-overlooked materiality that “The Cloud” is reliant upon, in order to elucidate its social, environmental, and economic impact, and call into question the structures of power that have developed out of the technologies of global computation.
American Factory (2019) – In post-industrial Ohio, a Chinese billionaire opens a factory in an abandoned General Motors plant, hiring two thousand Americans. Early days of hope and optimism give way to setbacks as high-tech China clashes with working-class America.
Anachasho: Food of the Wilds (2015) – Celebrating the incredible abundance of uncultivated/wild foods used in tribal Orissa.
Ancient Futures (1993) – A documentary about indigenous livelihoods in Ladakh, India, by Helena Norberg-Hodge and John Page.
Atamai Village (2012) – According to Helena Norberg-Hodge, this is “one of the most beautifully made inspirational films on eco-villages.”
Baraka (1992) – Montage of unforgettable images; a collage of life in all its beauty and brutality.
Bag It (2010) – “Is your life too plastic?”
The Bentley Effect (2016) – Filmed over five years, The Bentley Effect documents the highs and lows of the battle to keep a unique part of Australia gasfield-free.
Big River (2009) – A 30-minute documentary about the ecological consequences of industrial agriculture, by the makers of King Corn.
Cannibal Tours (1988) – “Affords a glimpse at the real (mostly unconsidered or misunderstood) reasons why ‘civilised’ people wish to encounter the ‘primitive’ … where much of what passes for values in western culture is exposed in stark relief as banal and fake.”
Captialism: A Love Story (2009) – Michael Moore takes a piercing look at the ‘mother of all problems’.
The Century of the Self (2002) – The Power of Nightmares (2004); The Trap: What Happened to Our Dream of Freedom? (2007) – A riveting series of films exposing, among many other things, the power of media and propaganda to manipulate.
The Coconut Revolution (2001) – When the islanders of Bougainville kick out a multinational mining company, they undertake to rediscover their traditions and regenerate their local economy.
Conservation Generation (2017) – Conservation Generation is a new short film by the National Young Farmers Coalition that offers a look into the lives of four young farmers and ranchers in the arid West. Despite contending with the impacts of historic drought, climate change, and increased competition for water, the film’s farmers are each committed to their communities and to finding innovative solutions to water shortages.
Consumed (2011) – A compelling documentary about modern consumerist culture.
The Corporation (2003) – An unflinching anatomy of the most powerful institution of our time; essential viewing.
Darwin’s Nightmare (2004) – How a “booming multinational industry of fish and weapons has created an ungodly globalized alliance on the shores of the world’s biggest tropical lake.”
Death by Design: The Dirty Secret of Our Digital Addiction (2016) – Filmmaker Sue Williams investigates the underbelly of the electronics industry and reveals how even the smallest devices have deadly environmental and health costs.
DIRT! The Movie (2009) – DIRT! The Movie–narrated by Jamie Lee Curtis–brings to life the environmental, economic, social and political impact that the soil has. It shares the stories of experts from all over the world who study and are able to harness the beauty and power of a respectful and mutually beneficial relationship with soil.
Dirty Wars (2013) – An unflinching look “into the heart of America’s covert wars, from Afghanistan to Yemen, Somalia and beyond.”
Disaster Capitalism (2018) – Disaster Capitalism takes the viewer inside three countries, Haiti, Afghanistan and Papua New Guinea, to reveal how the cause and effect of globalized development and aid is shaping realities in these vulnerable nations. It’s topical, controversial, edgy and far removed from what viewers see on their nightly news and daily websites.
The Economics of Happiness (2011) – Local Futures’ documentary film about the worldwide movement for economic localization.
The End of Poverty? (2008) – “The first film to succinctly explain how our economic system has created poverty and why it is the foundation for the current financial crisis”.
The End of Suburbia (2004) – On the ‘peak oil’ phenomenon and all its implications for the survival of oil-dependent industrial ‘civilization’.
Enoughness (2015) – Restoring balance to the economy.
Exporting Harm: The High-Tech Trashing of Asia (2002) – Find out the toxic reality of where your old electronics go after you take them for ‘recycling’ or throw them out.
Fed Up! (2004) – An entertaining and informative overview of our current food production system from the Green Revolution to the Biotech Revolution and what we can do about it.
Feeding Frenzy (2013) – The Food Industry, Obesity and the Creation of a Health Crisis. Over the past three decades, obesity rates in the U.S. have more than doubled for children and tripled for adolescents and a startling 70% of adults are now obese or overweight. Feeding Frenzy trains its focus squarely on the responsibility of the processed food industry and the outmoded government policies it benefits from.
10 Films That Make It Easy to See How Our Economy Is Killing the Planet – Here are 10 films that make it painfully clear that our economic system (global capitalism) is fundamentally unsustainable, and on top of that, making a lot of people miserable or unhappy anyway.
‘Flow: For the Love of Water (2008) – The film opens up and discusses the world water crisis. Nearly two million people die each year from water-borne diseases worldwide. The root causes of this crisis range from pesticide and chemical runoff, to simply not having access to clean water due to economic or political factors.
Food, Inc. (2009) – Exposes America’s industrialized food system and its effect on our environment, health, economy and workers’ rights. “You’ll never look at dinner the same way.”
Food Mythbusters Movies (2012) – Myth 1: ‘Hunger and Food Security: Do we really need industrial agriculture to feed the world?’, and Myth 2: ‘Marketing and Advertising: Myth of Choice: Is junk food what we really crave?’
Four Horsemen (2012) – The Four Horseman is an independent cinematic feature documentary which lifts the lid on how the global economy really works.
Fowl Play (2009) – On the industrial egg industry and the suffering it entails; a parable of how society has become disconnected from what we eat.
The Fourth World War (2003) – A story of men and women around the world who resist being annihilated by globalization.
Freightened – The Real Price of Shipping (2017) – Reveals the mechanics and perils of cargo shipping; an all-but-visible industry that relentlessly supplies 7 billion humans and holds the key to our economy, our environment and the very model of our civilization.
The Future of Food (2004) – On the perils of the industrial food system generally, but especially about genetically modified foods.
Gaon Chhodab Nahin (‘We will not leave our village!’) (2009) – Music video of Adivasi résistance.
The Great Hack (2019) – The Cambridge Analytica scandal is examined through the roles of several affected persons.
Gringo Trails (2013) – This film shows the unanticipated impact of tourism on cultures, economies, and the environment, tracing some stories over 30 years.
Growthbusters (2011) – “One man takes on City Hall, Wall Street and the Pope as he questions society’s most fundamental beliefs about prosperity.”
Garbage: The Revolution Starts at Home (2007) – A typical Canadian family agrees to keep its garbage at home rather than export it ‘out of sight, out of mind’. Shows the true hidden costs of the consumer class lifestyle.
The Global Banquet (2001) – Exposes globalization’s profoundly damaging effect on our food system in easily understandable terms.
Global Wealth Inequality (2013) – A short film by The Rules.
GMO OMG (2013) – Director and concerned father Jeremy Seifert is in search of answers about GMO’s.
Gold Fever (2013) – About the valiant resistance movement by indigenous communities in Guatemala against the social and environmental destruction wrought by multinational mining corporations.
Good Fortune (2010) – This film “explores how massive, international efforts to alleviate poverty in Africa may be undermining the very communities they aim to benefit.”
Harvest of Empire (2013) – This film “reveals the direct connection between the long history of U.S. intervention in Latin America and [today’s] immigration crisis.”
The High Price of Materialism (2011) – A short animation by psychologist Tim Kasser on “how America’s culture of consumerism undermines our well-being.”
Home (2009) – Spectacular aerial footage of the Earth shot in fifty countries by Yann Arthus-Bertrand; a clarion call for humanity to become aware of the full extent of its spoliation of the Earth and change its patterns of consumption.
How Wolves Change Rivers (2017) In 1995, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, along with Canadian biologists, captured 14 wolves in Canada and placed them in Yellowstone National Park, where they had been extinct since 1926. Over the next few years, the number of wolves rose, but that was the least of the changes that took place in Yellowstone. The effects were more striking than anyone could have expected.
The Illusionists (2015) This award winning documentary is about the globalization of beauty and the dark side of advertising.
In a Forest of Gods (2013) – It’s not just about a tribe, about the survival of a sustainable civilization with the knowledge of over a thousand years.
Inhabit (2015) – Inhabit is a feature length documentary introducing permaculture: a design method that offers an ecological lens for solving issues related to agriculture, economics, governance, and on. The film presents a vast array of projects, concepts, and people, and it translates the diversity of permaculture into something that can be understood by an equally diverse audience.
In the Forest Hangs a Bridge (1999) – A beautiful record of the dying art of bamboo bridge making in Arunachal Pradesh, India, and the tribal community that makes it possible.
In Our Hands (2017) – In Our Hands is the story of a new kind of farm, a new kind of food and a new kind of society. This film has been created as an open source tool in order to debunk the myth of the industrial food system, and be a resource for farmers and activists in building a better world.
In Transition 2.0 (2013) – An inspirational immersion in the Transition movement, gathering stories from around the world of ordinary people doing extraordinary things. You’ll hear about communities printing their own money, growing food, localizing their economies and setting up community power stations.
John and Jane (2005) – Unsettling look at the reality of call centers – and cultural imperialism – in India, and modernity’s profound loneliness and confusion.
King Corn (2007) – About two friends, one acre of corn, and the subsidized crop that drives the U.S. fast-food nation. Raises troubling questions about how we eat – and how we farm.
Know Your Food (2017) – a short film series which introduces viewers to many terms and principles used when we talk about sustainable food. Topics range from explaining the real cost of cheap food, exploring concepts like GMO and Organic, and finding solutions to challenges like food waste and seafood fraud.
Life After Growth: Economics for Everyone (2010) – Many have been pointing out that our current economic system is leading us to an environmental
and social catastrophe. Life After Growth begins to point to the people and communities who are looking for ways out. These are the pioneers who are rethinking the role of economics in our lives, and are engaging in different types of economic activity, right now.
Let’s Make Money (2008) – Eerie truths about the casino called the international financial system.
Life and Debt (2001) – A story of some of the impacts on Jamaica of international financial institutions, structural adjustment and free trade policies, and mass tourism.
Living the Change (2018) – Explores solutions to the global crises we face today – through inspiring stories of people pioneering change in their own lives and in their communities in order to live in a sustainable and regenerative way.
Living Downstream (2010) – Based on the acclaimed book by ecologist and cancer survivor Sandra Steingraber, about the fundamental links between politics, toxic pollution, and health.
Localization: For People and the Earth (2014) – A Local Futures’ short including international voices from our 2014 Economics of Happiness Conference in Bangalore, India.
Manufactured Landscapes (2006) – A stunning look at the ‘monstrosity of globalized commerce,’ focusing on China.
Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media (1992) – Unforgettable look at the information propaganda machine and its complicity in wars and other disasters.
Mindful Travel in Ladakh (2016) – Explores how tourists can minimize their impact on traditional cultures and fragile environments, focusing on the region of Ladakh on the Tibetan Plateau.
Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things (2016) – How might your life be better with less? Minimalism examines the many flavors of minimalism by taking the audience inside the lives of minimalists from all walks of life, families, entrepreneurs, architects, artists, journalists, scientists, and even a former Wall Street broker, all of whom are striving to live a meaningful life with less.
Mother Earth: A New Future for Small Farmers (2011) – Looks at the development of small-scale organic agriculture in Andhra Pradesh, one of the poorest regions in the south of India. It is a film about empowerment, self-confidence and pride of women who with cooperative effort take their future in their own hands.
Modern Day Problems Of Small Scale Farmers In India (2007) – The amazing work of P.V. Sateesh and the Deccan Development Society to revive traditional agro-ecological knowledge, seeds and practices in Andhra Pradesh.
The New Rulers of the World (2002) – Renowned journalist John Pilger explores the connection between oppressive regimes and corporate globalization in Indonesia.
No Impact Man (2009) – A New York City-based family resolves to live for a year with the minimum environmental impact.
Nuclear Savage (2011) – A devastating exposé of the U.S. governments’ nuclear weapons testing and secret human radiation experiments in the Marshall Islands.
Our Daily Bread (2005) – A montage of unforgettable, disturbing images of the inner workings of the industrial food system.
The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil (2006) – An inspiring and solutions-oriented film that’s especially good to watch after watching End of Suburbia.
Pig Business (2009) – The true cost behind the factory-farmed pork in supermarkets, who’s behind it, and what you can do about it.
A Quest For Meaning (2015) – The documentary project A Quest for Meaning stems from the growing realization, among citizens across the world, that Western society is trapped in a downward cycle leading us to destruction, injustice and frustration rather than harmony and well-being.
Real Food Media – Short films and big ideas about food, farming and sustainability.
Samsara (2011) – By the makers for the film, Baraka, Samasar is a montage of sacred grounds, disaster zones, industrial sites, and natural wonders.
Schooling the World (2010) – Beautifully shot on location in Ladakh, looks at the impact of Western-style schooling on indigenous cultures.
Seeds of Freedom Trilogy (2012-2015) – Charts the story of seed from its roots at the heart of traditional, diversity-rich farming systems across the world, to being transformed into a powerful commodity, used to monopolize the global food system.
The Sequel (2019) – THE SEQUEL looks at the influential work of David Fleming, who dared to re-imagine a thriving civilization after the collapse of our current mainstream economies and inspired the Transition Towns movement.
Shift Change (2012) – A film about the growing worker-owned business movement and how it is creating “secure, dignified jobs in democratic workplaces.”
Shop Till You Drop: The Crisis of Consumerism (2010) – Shop ‘Til You Drop provides a complete and compelling look at all the issues engendered by overconsumption. Even with a definite bias, it raises questions that need to be thoughtfully considered since the rest of the world is attempting to emulate the lifestyle that Americans have had for the last century.
The Slow Poisoning of India (2004) – On the devastating health effects of pesticides in India.
Solutions Locales pour un Désordre Global 2010 (2010) – Think Glboal Act Rural – What are the common points between the millions of landless workers of the plains of Brazil, a couple of microbiologists in France, the world’s biggest organic plantation in Ukraine and Vandana Shina’s experimental farms in India?
Soyalism (2018) – How Western and Chinese agribusiness are taking over the world’s grain and meat industry, while putting small farmers out of business and plundering the environment.
Speed: In Search of Lost Time (2013) – It’s a paradox: Never before in history have we worked more efficiently, and yet nearly all of us are feeling an increasing pressure of time. This film tries to track down the reasons for our shortage of time and the constant acceleration of our lives.
Stare Into The Light My Pretties… (2017) – We live in a world of screens. The average adult spends the majority of their waking hours in front of some sort of screen or device. How did we get here? Who benefits? What are the cumulative impacts on people, society and the environment? What may come next if this culture is left unchecked, to its end trajectory, and is that what we want?
The Story of Stuff (2007) – A simple and short – but powerful – animated explanation of the problems of globalization and consumerism, and a call for a radically different path.
Surplus (2003) – The emptiness of consumerism in the rich world juxtaposed with the suffering to create it in the poor.
Surviving Progress (2011) – “Every time history repeats itself, the price goes up.”
Synthetic Sea (2000) – On the health and environmental crisis of plastics, saturating the oceans, sea life, and ultimately us.
The Take (2004) – Workers in Argentina dispossessed by the vicissitudes of ‘structural adjustment’ decide to take back their workplaces, minus bosses and hierarchy.
Trashed (2012) – A shocking, necessary exploration of the extent and horrible legacy of the global waste crisis.
The True Cost (2015) – The True Cost is a groundbreaking documentary film that pulls back the curtain on the untold story and asks us to consider, who really pays the price for our clothing?
Urban Roots (2011) – A film about urban farming in Detroit, Michigan, a city facing industrial collapse and depopulation.
Voices of Transition (2012) – Presents paths towards a new model of human existence: one which is fair, environmentally sound and fulfilling, with soil and people supporting each other in a balanced and sustainable way.
The War on Democracy (2007) – John Pilger’s look at the movements for genuine democracy in Latin America, and the imperial forces that oppose them.
We Feed the World (2005) – Traces the sources of some of the industrial food system in Europe, making the links to environmental destruction and injustice ‘somewhere else’ along the way.
We the Uncivilised (2016) – A deeply personal story of two Londoners on a journey to reconnect with the natural world, and reestablish a sense of belonging.
Western Eyes (2001) – This documentary presents two Canadian women of Asian descent who are contemplating eyelid surgery. Maria and Sharon, of Philippino and Korean heritage respectively, believe their looks–specifically their eyes–get in the way of how people see them. Layering their stories with pop culture references to beauty icons and supermodels, filmmaker Ann Shin looks at the pain that lies deep behind the desire for plastic surgery.
What a Way to Go (2007) – “A middle class white guy comes to grips with peak oil, climate change, mass extinction, population overshoot and the demise of the American lifestyle.”
What Would Jesus Buy? (2007) – Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping take on America’s suicidal consumer binge during the Christmas holiday ‘shopping season’.
What’s the Economy For, Anyway? (2009) – “A humorous monologue about the American economy today, challenging the ways we measure economic success – especially the Gross Domestic Product.”
The World According to Monsanto (2008) – Investigative exposé of the notorious chemical- biotech company.
Yap: How Did They Know We’d Like TV? (1981) – “A witty and disturbing view of cultural imperialism at its most cynical and blatant.”