Top 10 Eco-Films | RiverWired
People & Media
Pop Culture Feb 25, 2008
Top 10 Eco-Films The Best of Good, Green Fun Onscreen

Everybody loves a good movie night, and here at RiverWired, we’re no exception. In addition to being the preeminent form of pop cultural entertainment, movies also have the potential to influence millions of people. Which is why, when a filmmaker uses his or her influence to promote green causes, those of us who have an investment in this planet of ours tend to take notice. With that in mind, the following list has been compiled to highlight those films that have the most environmental significance – and are just plain enjoyable to watch.

1. An Inconvenient Truth

Pretty much the mother of all environmental films, An Inconvenient Truth was extremely effective at both introducing a mainstream audience to the severity of the global warming problem, and making Al Gore look like the greatest man alive.

2. The Day After Tomorrow

Sure, it may be a ridiculous and poorly written disaster movie, but it has two significant redeeming qualities: 1) The catastrophic weather patterns that cause the film’s conflict are global warming-induced, and 2) Jake Gylenhaal.

3. I Heart Huckabee’s

A zany meta-meditation on consumerism, corporate culture, and the American entrepreneurial outlook that is willing to destroy anything (including, but not limited to, the environment) to make a buck. Features a stellar cast including Dustin Hoffman, Lily Tomlin, Jude Law, Naomi Watts, Mark Wahlberg, and Jason Schwartzman.

4. Ferngully

A children’s fable about the problem of deforestation, featuring a cast of loveable cartoon animals. Ferngully was a big hit with the little ones, and decidedly forward-thinking for its 1992 release date.

5. Erin Brockovich

Erin Brockovich didn’t just feature an Oscar-winning performance from a sassy, sultry Julia Roberts. It’s also a captivating, based-on-a-true-story exposé about the effects of a major corporation knowingly releasing toxic waste into the environment.

6. Grizzly Man

Director Werner Herzog presents a compelling, disturbing documentary about one man’s resignation from society in favor of a life in the Alaskan wilderness, living amongst grizzly bears.

7. Who Killed The Electric Car?

Released on the heels of An Inconvenient Truth, this film looks at the introduction and initial popularity of the EV1 electric car- and its sudden, mysterious disappearance from the automobile market.

8. Free Willy

A classic ‘90s kid’s film about wildlife preservation, the importance of an animal’s natural habitat, and the touching bond that can form between boy and orca. The film also features a rousing soundtrack that includes a classic Michael Jackson track. What’s not to love?

9. Arctic Tale

Another smart, snappy children’s film featuring an all-animal cast (this time, though, they’re sleek, CGI animals), that conveys the dangers global warming can have on an arctic habitat.

10. The American President

In this political drama/romance written by Aaron Sorkin, Michael Douglas plays a U.S. president who falls for an environmental lobbyist, portrayed by Annette Bening. A president who digs green women? Sexy.

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