Have you ever sat down to watch a family feature film, and noticed the movie portrays an important environmental message to young viewers?
There are a few excellent movies for children that focus on green issues. What better way to educate your kids on important environmental matters, all the while enjoying a great movie, too. Here are some examples:
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By far one of the most obvious choices as an eco-movie; PIXAR's Wall-E. The lovable, hard-working robot lives in the future, where humans left planet Earth to orbit space because they suffocated life with their humongous landfill.
Wall-E is left alone to clean up the Earth's mess, that is until he meets Eva, the Extraterrestrial Vegetation Evaluator. This movie not only addresses over-consumption, human obesity, greed and religion, but also follows an unexpected (and cute) love story between the two robots.
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In Dr. Seuss animated children's film, The Lorax is the guardian of the forest, who tries in vain to warn the Once-ler of the dangers of destroying nature, just to feed his greed for money and fame.
The story, which follows the book of the same name, addresses both economic and environmental issues in a light-hearted way that is not too distressing for children.
While it might seem that Happy Feet is all about a tap dancing misfit penguin called Mumble, the bigger message is much more.
The animated tale follows the Emperor Penguins who are trying to save their Antarctic home from destruction and over-fishing.
Rio and Rio 2
The bright and colourful, musically infectious kids movie Rio celebrates Brazilian culture, music and the biggest Samba parade in the world; the Rio de Janeiro carnival.
That said, there is a darker side to the movie, which follows an endangered pair of macaws who have become displaced and are stolen by animal smugglers. All is well in the end, but the message is loud and clear for viewers to understand why it is important to leave wild animals in their natural environment.
The sequel, Rio 2, addresses illegal logging and habitat destruction in the Amazon rainforest.
The beloved clownfish, Nemo, ventures into the open sea only to be caught by a diver fishing for aquarium additions. Nemo finds himself in a fish tank in a dentist's office overlooking Sydney Harbour, and his father Marlin embarks on a dangerous journey from the Great Barrier Reef to Sydney, to find him.
This Australian movie teaches kids that tropical fish belong in the ocean, and not in fish tanks. On a deeper scale, every summer, thousands of tropical fish from the Great Barrier Reef are swept up by the powerful East Australian Current, which transports them cooler seas where they won't survive.
It is said that the East Australian Current may also be getting stronger due to the effects of climate change. More scientific facts on abc.net.au
Don't be afraid to show your children movies with deeper messages. Educating today's generation on environmental matters sooner, may help our children make better choices for the future of our planet.