Looking for a documentary about the plastic issue? We have selected eleven of our favourite documentaries that explore the challenges of plastic pollution and its effect on our environment.


1. X Trillion


A journey across the North Pacific Ocean that promises to change not only the women’s lives but the very future of our planet


2. A Plastic Ocean

Accompanied by scientists, conservationists and engineers, the film follows the journey of two explorers as they travel to some of the most remote parts of the world, documenting the environmental issues associated with plastic pollution and its impact on the environment, ecosystems and human health.


3. Plasticized

An eye-opening story about the institute’s global mission to study the effects, reality, and scale of plastic pollution around the world. Plasticized is an intimate account of a first-hand journey aboard the Sea Dragon with the 5 Gyres Institute on the very first scientific expedition, focused on plastic waste, through the centre of the South Atlantic Ocean. You can watch this film on YouTube here.

4. Albatross

Albatross is a powerful visual journey into the heart of a gut-wrenching environmental tragedy. On one of the remotest islands on Earth, tens of thousands of albatross chicks lie dead on the ground, their bodies filled with plastic. Returning to the island over several years, Chris and his filming team witnessed cycles of birth, life, and death of these magnificent creatures as a multi-layered metaphor for our times.


5. Blue Planet II

Submerse yourself in the buttery tones of David Attenborough as he takes you on a journey through our blue planet. This award winning series hones in on the challenges currently facing the ocean, and is praised for bringing the plastic issue to the forefront of public attention.


6. Trashed

Overview of the ways that waste plastic is dealt with across the world and the impact of plastic toxics on our bodies, with Jeremy Irons. On average, Americans throw out an average of 4.5 pounds of garbage every single day. But where exactly all this garbage end up? This 20-minute documentary dives headlong to find out and discovers that our trash ends up in some unlikely places.


7. Bag It

Americans use 60,000 plastic bags every five minutes-single-use disposable bags that we mindlessly throw away. But where is “away?” Where do the bags and other plastics end up, and at what cost to our environment, marine life and human health? Bag It follows “everyman” Jeb Berrier as he navigates our plastic world.


8. The Smog of the Sea

In this documentary, a diverse crew of surfers, a musician, spearfisher, bodysurfer and marine scientist embark on a one-week voyage to the Sargasso Sea in search of the infamous patches of floating garbage. Instead what they encounter is an unnerving ‘fog’ of microplastics.


9. Drowning in Plastic

Wildlife biologist Liz Bonnin works with some of the world’s leading marine biologists and campaigners to reveal the horrors of the plastic issue in this shocking and revealing documentary. It is a difficult, but very important watch about the consequences of our plastic consumption.


 10. Straws

This short 30-minute documentary explores the unique history of straws and the problems of single use products. Narrated in parts by Oscar-winner Tim Robbins, it’s an interesting watch suitable for all ages.


11. A Plastic Tide

Made as part of the Sky Ocean Rescue campaign, this 45-minute documentary dives deep into the complexities of plastic pollution, gathering information and viewpoints from people across the world. The problem is large and serious, but ‘A Plastic Tide’ gives us hope and shows that there are amazing and inspiring people everywhere trying to solve this problem. As Mumbai-local Afroz Shah says: ‘cleaning up rubbish is addictive’, and we agree. Together we can make a difference.