Top 5 Zero Waste Documentaries/Movies

Do you consider yourself a voracious reader or do you prefer to watch a good movie? What about a weekend spent watching zero-waste documentaries that will both enlighten and inspire you? Perhaps even inspiring you to help rescue the planet.

Spending an afternoon watching environmental documentaries may be educational, motivating, and, dare we say, entertaining.

If you're asking "what is zero waste?" Spending a few hours with these amazing filmmakers is one of the finest ways to learn about the movement.

I don't want you to cry over these movies; that isn't the point. 

What I do want you to do is use it to inspire you to make a difference, to raise awareness among others, and to continue to improve yourself as a person.

 Top 5 Zerowaste movies to watch



 It's not only something to watch; it's also something to do. Here are 5 zero-waste films to get you started.


1. Just Eat It

Food wasting is unacceptable. That is why Just Eat It addresses food waste from farm to retail to the back of the fridge.

What makes this film stand out? Jen and Grant, the directors of Just Eat It, vow to stop buying and live only on abandoned food.

Trust me, it's not as horrible as it sounds. More food is thrown out than you would think, for a variety of reasons.

Food must fulfil very strict requirements in order to be sold in a grocery shop; no flaws are tolerated. So everything that is even slightly off will be rejected and thrown away. But don't worry, this is still perfectly acceptable food.

You can read our blog on ways to reduce food waste 


2. Tapped


Tapped is a fascinating documentary that takes us behind the scenes of an uncontrolled and hidden society. 

It demonstrates that the bottled water industry is a consumer and ecological nightmare. 

Many of these bottles wind up in the water after passing through the plastic manufacturing process. 

This documentary traces the history of the bottled water business and the communities involved.

It is difficult to get rid of large businesses, but the video reveals how government rules have failed us on occasion, giving us the impression that we have no other option. 

The documentary empowers us and offers us with solid knowledge on how we can all be a part of the solution by illustrating how we have all contributed to these environmental challenges.

You can buy eco-friendly water bottles on goingzero.


3. Minimalism

Would you be happier if you had less? Minimalism: A Documentary About The Important Things investigates this very subject.

You get a peek into the homes of minimalists from different walks of life, including artists, journalists, scientists, families, entrepreneurs, and others. Even a former Wall Street broker!

We're always looking for the next best thing. We assume it will bring us happiness, but in reality, it is a never-ending circle of misery.

By limiting the objects we allow into our life, we begin to focus on what is truly essential, and happiness follows.

While there is nothing wrong with consuming, there is something wrong with compulsive consumption. Purchasing additional items only to acquire the latest model, or simply because you can,

There is nothing wrong with consumption; nevertheless, there is something wrong with obsessive consumption. Buying more things only to get the latest model or because you can can eventually empty you.

Furthermore, excessive consumption harms the ecosystem. Raw materials must be removed from the ground in order to create the products we seek and adore.

Living a more simple lifestyle can help us become happy while also benefiting the environment.

You can read our blog on minimalism in everyday life.


4. Seaspiracy

Much has been debated and reported about the blockbuster Netflix documentary Seaspiracy's factual accuracy on a few key aspects, but this does not diminish the film's strong message. 

Specifically, the fishing industry's massively damaging influence on our seas. 

Ali Tabrizi goes beyond the looming plastics crisis that previous filmmakers have (rightly) focused on to uncover the industry's scourges of human trafficking, overfishing, bycatch, and faults in sustainable fish certification processes. 

Seaspiracy will undoubtedly make you consider your next catch.

You can read our detailed review on Seaspiracy


5. No Impact Man

Men's perspectives on the zero waste movement are rarely heard. 

That's because it's primarily a female-led movement (which is great, but it's also great to see guys become engaged).

That certainly changes with No Impact Man. Colin Beavan, his wife, and their small child go on a zero-waste year in New York City. As a fellow New Yorker, I was immediately fascinated.

You get to observe Colin go about his days doing anything he can to save energy and decrease trash. Some could suggest he goes to excessive measures at times.

Finally, this film is entertaining while also being highly motivational. It demonstrates that living a waste-free life is entirely achievable. This is undoubtedly the most amusing of the zero waste documentaries offered.

What I admire best about Colin is that he doesn't profess to have all the answers. 

He simply does his best and tries to live as near to zero waste as possible, despite all of the mental, family, marital, and societal challenges that come his way.

Final Thoughts

A zero-waste film is just a film or documentary that addresses one or more of the zero-waste movement's fundamental challenges. 

It might be about determining the amounts and types of garbage we generate as consumers on a daily basis. 

It might capture the marketing-driven phenomena of consumerism that encourages waste. 

The zero-waste films on this list include a wide spectrum of zero-waste themes, with each spreading out into other areas of environmentalism and sustainability.

As long as you locate knowledge that is useful and teaches you something new. Making incremental moves is preferable to taking none at all.

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