This lovely guest blog from Melissa at The Reef-World Foundation is just what you need at this time. Get inspired, learn something new and be poised and ready for when things change!
The events of the last few weeks have left many of us confined to our homes with more time on our hands than usual. For many, that inevitably leads to bingeing TV shows and movies – but it doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t learn a thing or two along the way. There are plenty of shows, series and films out there which address the climate crisis, the threats faced by our oceans and give you some inspiration on how you can try to help. Here, we’ve rounded up a few of our favourites.
BBC’S BLUE PLANET & BLUE PLANET II
You won’t be surprised to see us kicking off this roundup with the legend that is David Attenborough. Despite the ocean covering two thirds of the Earth’s surface, we know very little about it. Yet, the spectacular Blue Planet series will give you a fascinating insight into the mysteries of the deep we do know. Prepare to be transported to a range of magical and mysterious underwater ecosystems – and see some events never before seen by human eyes – through the documentary’s magnificent footage
For even more of Sir David, check out Climate Change – The Facts.
“No ocean, no life. No ocean, no us.” Sylvia Earle
From one legend to another, we couldn’t do an ocean-movie roundup without mentioning “Her Deepness” – the inimitable marine biologist, oceanographer, diver and explorer: Sylvia Earle. Mission Blue is a Netflix original documentary which follow’s Sylvia Earle’s journey in trying to raise awareness of the dire threats faced by our oceans. Learn how and why she’s made it her life’s purpose to speak for the ocean, calling for us to protect the ocean in the same way we now protect the land through a global network of marine protected areas.
Directed by Jeff Orlowski, this Netflix documentary details a global campaign to research and record the disappearance of coral reefs around the world. It was an ambitious production: with more than 500 hours spent underwater, footage captured in over 30 different countries and over 500 people – including scientists, divers and photographers – coming together to support this film capturing the state of coral reefs and the threats they face.
This documentary, which recorded how some corals glow in vibrant colours in a last desperate effort to survive increasing ocean heat waves – inspired the UN Environment Programme’s Glowing campaign. Glowing aims to make the world take notice of glowing corals and the warning they represent. For more information about the campaign and how you can support it, visit https://www.glowing.org/.
Love sharks? Want to watch a season with footage of more than 30 different species? Then you’ll love BBC’s Shark series. This wildlife series meets scientists from around the world who are studying the ocean’s apex predators to find out more about their social interactions, courtships, hunting behaviours (they even use analysis of hunting behaviour to predict the most likely time of day for a shark attack) and the things that threaten their survival.
A PLASTIC OCEAN
Today, most people are well aware of the problem plastic poses for our ocean. But back in 2016, when this documentary was made, much less was known about the threat of plastic pollution. What started out as a mission to film blue whales – the world’s largest living animal – changed course when the documentary-maker found plastic waste choking the oceans. The documentary then investigates the scale of the plastic problem and tries to find solutions to save our polluted oceans.
“The animal we fear the most is the one we can’t live without.” – Rob Stewart
Humans are killing up to 150 million sharks a year. As a result, shark populations have decreased a staggering 90%. Join filmmaker Rob Stewart in his thrilling quest to find out why people are killing the ocean’s top predator and what he can do to stop it before it’s too late.
QUEEN OF MANTAS
If you love manta rays, and want to find out more about conservation efforts for this enigmatic species, this documentary is for you. Travel to the stunning Mozambican coastline to learn how marine biologist Dr. Andrea Marshall – aka the “Queen of Mantas” – came to the country to study this enigmatic species. Andrea was the first person in the world to complete a PhD on manta rays and now works tirelessly to spearhead conservation efforts for the species. The documentary’s breathtaking underwater footage will transport you to another world, where you’ll learn about these huge, intelligent and graceful animals through incredible close-up encounters.
The illegal wildlife trade is believed to be one of the world’s most profitable forms of trafficking, after drugs, guns and humans. In Racing Extinction, a team of undercover documentary-makers go on a daring mission to raise awareness of mankind’s role in the extinction of many species and prevent the world’s sixth major extinction.
FINDING NEMO (& FINDING DORY!)
OK so this popular Disney flick isn’t technically an ocean conservation movie – but its depiction of a bustling coral reefs is beautifully done. AND it’s a great way to teach children (and, perhaps, some adults) never to take marine life, dead or alive.
STAY SAFE EVERYONE AND HAPPY VIEWING!
Originally published here