Review: “Bag It” (2010)

A film by Suzan Beraza

Bag It is a documentary that follows Jeb into the world of the omnipresent single-use plastic bag.  Plastic bags are the number one consumer item in the world.  Americans consume about one million plastic bags per minute.  He finds out they are expecting their first child and this gets him more concerned about plastic bags and chemicals that could harm his child.

Plastic bags are being banned in countries across the world.  With any luck, the US will take their lead and get rid of them once and for all.  The American Chemistry Council would like to see their plastic in rotation for as long as possible.  Unfortunately, they have the money to back them and can easily win legal battles.  They also duped Americans into thinking that most plastic is recyclable because of the revolving arrow recycle symbol.  In reality, only a few of these (HDPE and PETE) are actually recyclable.  There are no regulations for recycling and vary from state to state.  I was appalled when I moved to Montana and found out that recycling wasn’t even mandatory.

The oceans and marine life are at great risk due to plastics.  Sea turtles will see plastic bags and eat them mistaking them for jellyfish.  So many species are ingesting and continually exposed to plastic.  Sadly, plastic kills about 100,000 marine animals per year.  All the plastic in the seas comes from land sources.

They also talk in length about phthalates and BPA’s (endocrine disruptors) and how they are affecting us, especially infants.  Boys are becoming more feminized and girls are becoming masculinized.  There is also a direct correlation with exposure to BPA’s and ADHD and autism as well as low sperm count and type II diabetes.  We need to deal with these chemicals now to protect our children and their children.

 Within minutes of finishing the film I had my kids scouring the house for plastic bags.  We loaded them up and recycled them at our local grocery store.  We decided to take all the plastic milk jug tops and clean them to make an art project.  I checked our toiletry products and made note of the ones that probably contain phthalates (contain Parfum/fragrance) so I wouldn’t purchase them again.  The BPA’s are a little trickier, but we are trying to purchase less canned goods.  They stress in the film that everyone can do a little bit to pitch in, and it will end up making a big difference.  Three easy things you can do are bring your own bag, bring your own coffee cup, and bring your own water bottle.  And buy less stuff! Hopefully, after watching Bag It, you will also feel moved to do whatever you can to curb your use of plastic and steer clear of phthalates and BPA’s.  Check out www.bagitmovie.com to learn how to get more involved.

Watch the trailer:

 

You can follow Bag It on twitter @BagItMovie and on facebook at fb.com/BagItMovie.

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Lotus Wollschlager is the official Her Film movie reviewer.  Find her bio on the HF.Reviews page.

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DVD Releases

Looking for some flicks to watch, especially over the holidays?  Me, too!  I’ve amassed a list below of several new and upcoming DVD releases.  Did you miss a lot of these on the festival circuit or in the theatre like I did?  Included in the list are also some foreign films (like Happy, Happy, from Norway) and documentaries (like Bag It and The Other F Word, looking forward to seeing this one) as well as some TV films (like Toast).  These are all films either directed by a woman or featuring female protagonists (or written/co-written by a woman), so get your movie on this holiday season by supporting these new films!

DVDs out now:

THE TEMPEST (directed by Julie Taymor, starring Helen Mirren)

TANNER HALL (directed by Tatiana von Furstenburg and Francesca Gregorini, starring Rooney Mara)

January 2012:

HIGHER GROUND (directed by Vera Farmiga)

TOAST (directed by SJ Clarkson)

DIRTY GIRL (directed by Abe Sylvia, starring Juno Temple and Milla Jovovich)

ROMEOS (directed by Sabine Bernardi)

ANOTHER HAPPY DAY (directed by Sam Levinson, starring Ellen Barkin (who also produces), Kate Bosworth, Demi Moore, Ellen Burstyn)

HAPPY, HAPPY (directed by Anne Sewitsky, written by Ragnhild Tronvoll, starring Agnes Kittelsen)

THE OTHER F WORD (directed by Andrea Blaugrund) Currently playing & opening in cities across the U.S.

SPORK (directed by J.B. Ghuman Jr., starring Savannah Stein)

CHALET GIRL (directed by Phil Traill, starring Felicity Jones and Brooke Shields)

ELEVATE (directed by Anne Buford)

February:

SEDUCING CHARLIE BARKER (directed by Amy Glazer, starring Daphne Zuniga and Heather Gordon)

TINY FURNITURE (directed by and starring Lena Dunham)

BUTTERFLY CRUSH (directed by Alan Clay, starring Hayley Fielding and Courtney Hale)

HEART OF NOW (directed by Zak Forsman, starring Marion Kerr)

HONEY 2 (directed by Bille Woodruff, co-written by Alyson Fouse, starring Katerina Graham)

THE SPACE BETWEEN (directed by Travis Fine, starring Melissa Leo and AnnaSophia Robb)

MIGHTY MACS (directed by Tim Chambers, starring Carla Gugino and Ellen Burstyn)

INSIGHT (directed by Richard Gabai, starring Natalie Zea)

 

March:

BAG IT (directed by Suzan Beraza, written by Michelle Curry Wright)

FRESH (directed by Ana Sofia Joanes)