Top 10 Most Ironclad Vegan Documentaries on Amazon Prime

Top 10 Most Ironclad Vegan Documentaries on Amazon Prime

What do the climate crisis, social justice issues and your health all have in common? All three converge in one place: on your plate. As veganism rapidly gains traction across the world, more and more documentaries are bringing these issues to light. Taken together, they create an iron-clad case that veganism is environmentalism, compassion and health. If you’re looking for the best vegan documentaries on Amazon Prime, look no further!

1. Cowspiracy (2014)

IMBD Rating: 8.1/10

This documentary describes the system-level collusion that keeps the animal agriculture industry churning in secrecy. For instance, numerous environmentalist groups, such as Greenpeace and The Climate Reality Project, are sponsored by meat and dairy industries. To maximize donations, they have avoided condemning the animal agriculture industry for its environmental impact. Yet by doing so, they are hypocritically undermining the very cause they claim to support.

Without addressing it, we cannot solve any of the problems it causes. Animal agriculture is the leading cause of global warming, water depletion, deforestation, species extinction, and ocean dead zones. Available on Netflix. To learn more, see the film’s fact-checked statistics, a printable flyer, and the filmmakers’ response to criticism.

2. The End of Medicine (2022)

iTunes Apple Rating: 4.4/5

Although as yet unrated on IMBD, this feature-length documentary is full of enlightening information and well worth the watch. It illustrates how animal agriculture, the wildlife trade and habitat destruction fuel the growing crisis of antibiotic resistance. Testimonials from physicians, epidemiologists, industry whistleblowers, government officials and representatives from antibiotic resistance action groups make an irrefutable case. Their testimonials warns us that if we continue along this path, we will soon face an antibiotic apocalypse. Available on Amazon Prime here.

3. Blackfish (2013)

IMBD Rating: 8.1/10

Stories like Blackfish demonstrate why veganism not only encompasses protecting animals against exploitation for food, but for all uses, including entertainment. Blackfish tells the story of how an orca at SeaWorld killed three people while in captivity. Predictably, the industry blamed it on human error in order to protect their profits.

With startling footage and emotional interviews, the documentary makes the case against keeping wild animals in captivity for human entertainment – whether that be aquariums, zoos or circuses. As quoted in the film, “All whales in captivity are psychologically traumatized… if you were in a bathtub for twenty-five years, don’t you think you’d get a little psychotic?” Available on Amazon Prime here or for free on Youtube here.

4. Eating You Alive (2018)

IMBD Rating: 7.9/10

Similar to Plant-Pure Nation, this documentary examines the diet-related causes and cures of chronic disease and the astronomical healthcare costs required to treat them. As Dr. Neal Barnard says in the film, “Foods are the cause of heart disease, diabetes, hypertension and many forms of cancer. If they’re the cause, they can also be the solution. The vegetables, the fruits, the whole grains, these foods have powers that you never imagined. And it’s time to put it to work.” Available on Amazon Prime here or for free on TubiTV here.

5. Eating Our Way to Extinction (2021)

IMBD Rating: 7.8/10

This film drives home the severity and urgency of the climate crisis. It highlights how rising temperatures cause natural disasters, food and water insecurity, economic disruption and conflict worldwide. Footage illustrates how the global meat, fish and dairy industries devastate the planet, human health, and indigenous communities. After a hefty dose of reality, it ends on a hopeful note by inspiring us to take concrete action through our food choices. As the film warns us: We must act now. The clock is ticking. Available on Amazon Prime Video here or for free on Youtube here.

6. Forks Over Knives (2011)

IMBD Rating: 7.9/10

A third film advocating for the power of a whole-foods plant-based diet to prevent and treat chronic disease. Forks Over Knives follows the journeys of Dr. T. Colin Campbell (nutritional scientist at Cornell) and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn (a former top surgeon at the Cleveland Clinic). Both conducted multiple groundbreaking studies and independently arrived at the same conclusion: a whole-foods plant-based diet can prevent and often reverse diseases like heart disease, type 2 diabetes and many cancers. Available for free here.

Available on Amazon Prime here.

7. Vegan: Everyday Stories (2016)

IMBD Rating: 7.7/10

In this film, interviews with vegans of all ages, races and socioeconomic backgrounds illustrate the fact that all kinds of people become vegan for all sorts of reasons. The documentary explores the stories of an eight year old vegan activist, Genesis Butler; a country ranching couple from Texas; several famous vegans; a Californian woman with a food truck; a few vegan athletes and well-known plant-based doctor Neal Barnard. No scenes of animal cruelty. Watch the full documentary on Amazon Prime here or for free on YouTube here.

8. The Gamechangers (2019)

IMBD Rating: 7.8/10

Geared especially towards those interested in fitness, this film addresses the protein myth and improved performance among professional athletes who go plant-based. It also examines how marketing has created a public perception of eating meat as “manly.” Yet meat negatively impacts health and athletic performance. One of the athletes shared that people will ask him, “How can you get as strong as an ox without eating any meat?” He replied, “Have you ever seen an ox eating meat?” Full documentary available for free on YouTube here.

9. Plant-Pure Nation (2018)

IMBD Rating: 7.4/10

Weaving together real-life stories with scientific evidence, Plant-Pure Nation makes a solid case for the power of a whole-foods plant based diet to eliminate chronic disease. Although the science is clear, industry-funded studies attempt to convolute the data and confuse the public.

The film also explains that “Big Medicine” in America trains physicians to write prescriptions for costly pills and procedures, not inexpensive diet and lifestyle change. Produced by Tom Campbell, the son of Dr. Colin Campbell, who authored of the groundbreaking book The China Study. Available to stream for free here.

10. The End of Meat (2018)

IMBD Rating: 6.4/10

This film explores what effect a post-meat world would have on the planet, humans and animals. It questions the our relationship with animals would look like if we stopped viewing them as commodities to exploit. Watch to reimagine the future role of animals in human society. Available on Amazon Prime, as well as Vimeo, Vudu and iTunes.

Two vegan documentaries on Amazon Prime that I would not recommend

Earthlings (2005)

Even more graphic than Dominion, Earthlings may be too much for the average viewer to stomach. If you can’t even get your audience to sit through it, how are you going to communicate your message? Yes, of course, if we can’t watch our food being made, we shouldn’t be eating it. And yes, many activists like Earthling Ed have been swayed by this type of material.

But I fear that many people will be turned away by the fact that the entire film is essentially violent slaughterhouse footage and will not be able to hear the message. Perhaps start with one of the other documentaries listed above.

Eating Animals (2018)

Based on Jonathan Safron Foer’s best selling novel Eating Animals and narrated by Natalie Portman, this documentary offers a thoughtful analysis of factory farming. However, it stops short of sharing a strong vegan message. If anything, viewers walk away with the impression that vegetarianism is “good enough.”

The film also errs in that it depicts small scale farms wistfully, as if animals are not exploited in these operations. And small farmers’ lives are often far from idyllic, as they are often in debt and feel conflicted over breeding animals to suffer. Despite the film’s portrayal of small farms, small-scale farming does not solve the ethical, environmental or public health impacts of large-scale farming.

Best 10 vegan documentaries on Amazon Prime

If you’re looking to make use of your Amazon Prime account to get inspired and informed about veganism through documentaries, these are the must-see documentaries: Cowspiracy, The End of Medicine, Blackfish, Eating You Alive, Eating Our Way to Extinction, Forks Over Knives, Vegan: Everyday Stories, The Gamechangers, Plant-Pure Nation and The End of Meat. If you’re open to streaming on other platforms, check out the best vegan documentaries on Netflix, the best vegan documentaries on YouTube, and the overall 15 top vegan documentaries.

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