Binge Watch This – Earth Day Edition

In honor of Earth Day, The Courier created a list of must-see films and television shows featuring stories about the planet, climate change and more. 

Mykel Hilliard, Multimedia Editor

“Our Planet”

Streaming on Netflix, YouTube

In Netflix’s first nature documentary series, “Our Planet,” viewers get a chance to travel across the world to different regions such as the jungle, forests and grasslands to meet the wildlife that occupy these areas. The series showcases the impact human capitalism and climate change have had on the planet. Since premiering in April 2019, the series has been watched by over 100 million households according to Netflix. The show can also be streamed free on YouTube.



Streaming on Disney+

If you are looking for something a little more lighthearted, Walt Disney Pictures “WALL-E” is perfect for you. Upon its release, “WALL-E” became an immediate animated classic. The film takes place on 29th century Earth which has become a human-less wasteland due to consumerism and climate change. Of all the trash compacting robots, one robot named WALL-E remains. During his daily routine he meets EVE, a robot that has been sent to scan the planet for signs of sustainable life. WALL-E begins to fall for EVE, and the two begin to connect. 


“Food, Inc.” 

Streaming on YouTube, Vudu, The Roku Channel

In this Academy Award nominated documentary, viewers are given a chance to see a different side of the food production industry which often includes corruption and dangerous practices. The film is split into nine chapters, each centering around a particular aspect of the food industry. 

Each chapter provides an in-depth look into the American supermarket, revealing some of the industry’s most questionable practices. Topics presented in the documentary include the conditions farm animals live in, the agricultural practices of corn and bean farmers, and the impact of the cost of calories on health. “Food, Inc.” presents the facts of the food industry in an engaging way and is complemented by gut-wrenching visuals, making the documentary a hard but entertaining watch.


“The Biggest Little Farm” 

Streaming on Amazon Prime Video, YouTube 

“The Biggest Little Farm” is a documentary following John and Molly Chester as they move from Los Angeles to an 81-acre farm in Ventura County, California. The documentary chronicles their journey: Building the farm from the ground up, taking on new animals and eventually having a child.

The film is an emotional rollercoaster and shows viewers how the ecosystem and animals work together to keep the farm afloat. The film was a hit among audiences and critics. Peter DeBruge of Variety said the film “feel[s] like fresh air for the soul.” The New York Times critic Glenn Kenny wrote in his review for the film, “It may also revive your wonder at the weird but ultimately awe-inspiring ways in which humans can help nature do its work.”


“Poverty, Inc.”

Streaming on Amazon Prime Video, Vudu 

Michael Matheson Miller’s “Poverty, Inc.” is a heart wrenching documentary showing the repercussions foreign aid has had in African and South American countries over the last several decades. In the film, viewers are presented with interviews from people who say they have experienced first-hand what nongovernmental organizations and charities have brought to their countries. 

Rather than being a hit piece on these groups, the documentary instead raises awareness of their impact while still providing an interesting and unique point of view of what poverty really means to the people from these countries. The film was awarded several accolades including Best Documentary at the Bahamas International Film Festival and was an official selection at the Austin Film Festival.