9 Must-See Animal Rights Documentaries

Posted by Jolie Peters
(@Jolie Peters)

Looking for an excuse to give up meat, and embrace a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle? Look no further. From factory farming to Seaworld, these 9 eye-opening films will turn you on to the world of animal rights like never before.

1. Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret

This documentary has created a lot of buzz – and for good reason. Celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and Joe Rogan have all endorsed this film, that started as a mere documentary and ended in a restaurant going completely vegan. The film highlights the ecological determinants of animal agriculture, proving that it’s not only the animals that suffer but the environment as well.

2. Earthlings

Narrated by Joaquin Phoenix, this documentary provides a rudimentary understanding for animal welfare. From factory farms to puppy mills, the film covers a wide breadth of information and is a much-watch for anyone wanting to learn more about the (mis)treatment of animals.

3. Forks Over Knives

Fork Over Knives is another film which shows that consuming or mistreating animals effects many components of life – including our health. This particular documentary raises the idea that degenerative diseases, such as heart disease or diabetes, can be entirely prevented or reversed if individuals maintain a plant-based diet.

4. Blackfish

This moving film follows the story of Tilikum, a performing orca in captivity that killed several people. Blackfish takes you behind the scenes to show the inhumane conditions the sea animals are kept in, and their effect on these animals’ extraordinary intelligence. The story “challenges us to consider our relationship to nature and reveals how little we humans have learned from these highly intelligent and enormously sentient fellow mammals.” This documentary was so powerful, SeaWorld pledged to stop breeding orcas after it was released.

5. The Cove

The Cove is not for the faint of heart. It takes viewers to Japan during the Taiji Dolphin Dive where the mammals are hunted. Expanding on this, the film covers the issue of ocean conservation as well as the dangers of consuming dolphin meat.

6. Food, Inc.

Food, Inc. will make you feel like you’ve been cheated by the American government. Nominated for an Academy Award, this incredible documentary sheds light on agribusiness in a capitalist society, the production of unhealthy foods, animal rights issues, and worker violations. You will never look at food the same way again.

7. Vegucated

Follow the story of three omnivores who agree to trade in their meat-centric diet for a plant-based one for six weeks. They take you on their journey as they learn about food, animals and consequences of factory farming on their bodies and the environment.

8. Live and Let Live

If you’re looking for a reason to give up meat, this film will give you several. From a former butcher to a factory farmer, Live and Let Live follows six people who share their individual stories about their journey to vegetarian/veganism.

9. Speciesism: The Movie

Directed by Mark Devries, the last but not least on our list poses the question – are humans superior to non-human animals? It’s full of interviews with people like Peter Singer, Richard Dawkins, Temple Grandin and also includes footage from factory farms throughout the USA.


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