Documentaries are a way of learning that is far more enjoyable than any lecture, and yet arguably can be similarly as educational. My aim was to not let my personally-immense-sized-bias take too much an effect on this list (if it did; this list would literally conceive of 5 different documentaries in which address the poor status of our agriculture-business in this country ie. government subsidies, corporations like monsanto, blah blah blah), and to make as diverse a list as possible.
Virguna: Beginning the list with this suggestion was by no means an accident. Simply put – a must watch. There’s something for everyone here, and an absolute educational experience that will broaden horizons and inspire many. Investigative journalism at it’s finest; this documentary touches on post-colonial African conflicts, corrupt corporations, activism, heroics, humanity, and wildlife – guerrillas in particular. Before you move on with the list, please, give this a watch.
Cowspiracy: Admittedly not the best film ever made; there are no amazing cinematic shots, and it’s not professionally written. That stated – incredibly informational, insightful, factual and fear inspiring. This movie dives into the arguments against animal agriculture; economic impacts, evil corporations, and environmental issues. An immense plethora of facts displayed, it makes it hard to argue against. This is an issue that is being raised time and time again in our generation, and a good place to divulge yourself into when trying to see an extreme argument against ‘meat eating’.
180 Degrees South: Follows quite possibly the most adventurous story I’ve ever heard, besides the chronicles of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara (if you don’t know what I’m referencing to, now is a good time to pause and google some things). It follows Jeff Johnson on his trek from Ventura, California to the Patagonia natural reserve in Argentina, in the aim of retracing the 1968 trip undertaken by Yvon Chouinard and Doug Tompkins, respective owners of the clothing retailers Patagonia and North Face. Also along for the trip – pro surfer Chris Malloy, and pro rock climber Timmy O’Neill; regardless to say this makes for quite the adventure inspiring film.
ESPN 30 for 30, The U & The U part II: 1980’s Miami, Florida was a collision of race riots, illegal Cuban refugees, and cocaine wars. The film focuses on how one coach took this failing universities football program, and by scouring the ghetto’s for players, created a powerhouse that would win four of the next nine national championships. Essentially changing the face of football this coach showed the collegiate landscape how to take kids from crooked neighborhoods with large personalities and put them into successful positions. Continuing into a part II the series takes a turn, and addresses how they went from a national powerhouse and complete dynasty, back to a university of scandal, as their football program becomes entangled with infamous ponzi schemer Nevin Shapiro. As well as turning back to turmoil, part II begins to expose the frauds that make up the NCAA organization. Well worth the time spent.
Chelsea Does: This one is an easy sell for anyone college-age. Comedian Chelsea Handler does Peyote, talks about racism, and attempts to learn about Silicon Valley in a 4 piece documentary series. I’m not sure there’s a more humorous or insightful way to learn, and laugh simultaneously.
Blackfish: I don’t want to call this ‘irrelevant’ but it is objectively less important than it once was. This movie can largely be credited for the reason SeaWorld announced they are stopping their whale breeding program. Using testimonials from whale experts, and former SeaWorld employees the team of activists put together a film which changes the way you think about performing animals. If you haven’t seen it, and didn’t know that SeaWorld was stopping their whale shows, then this is a must watch.