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IU Themester Streaming and DVD Resources


sustain•ability represents a place of reconciliation and synergy, occurring where economic, social, and environmental concerns are simultaneously met over the long term. Implementation of sustainability involves both the arts and the sciences to enhance human lives. Sustainability entails both social equity and respect for the biosphere and human cultures. It requires human creativity in all its dimensions to assure both current and potential thriving.

Our future depends on our ability to identify sustainable solutions—at local to global scales—to the many pressing challenges of the 21st century: from global climate change, dramatic loss of habitat and biodiversity, and displacements of people and new intersections of cultures, to pervasive pollution. We face dwindling supplies of fossil fuels, fresh water, and arable land, increasing vulnerability to natural disasters, and unstable economic systems associated with ever-widening gaps between the wealthy and poor. These realities will require collaboration across the physical and social sciences, the fine arts and humanities, the many professions, and all walks of life within the public and private sectors. - Adapted from IU Themester Homepage


IUB Streaming Titles

The following resources require IUB CAS Authentication.

Advertising at the Edge of the Apocalypse (2017, 62 min.)  In this highly anticipated sequel to his groundbreaking, ADVERTISING AND THE END OF THE WORLD, media scholar Sut Jhally explores the devastating personal and environmental fallout from advertising, commercial culture, and rampant American consumerism.  Ranging from the emergence of the modern advertising industry in the early 20th century to the full-scale commercialization of the culture today, Jhally identifies one consistent message running throughout all of advertising: the idea that corporate brands and consumer goods are the keys to human happiness. He then shows how this powerful narrative, backed by billions of dollars a year and propagated by the best creative minds, has blinded us to the catastrophic costs of ever-accelerating rates of consumption.

Chi-Raq (2015, 127 min.)  A gang leader's girlfriend convinces a group of women to help put a stop to the violence in Chicago's South Side by taking a vow of abstinence, which will only end when their men decide to bring peace to the city.

Erin Brokovich (2020, 131 min.) A law-office worker investigates a utility company that has contaminated groundwater in a small California town. Based on a true story.

The Future of Food Sustainability and Security (2010, 52 min.)  For decades, local food producers in the West have faced a shrinking market share. But if well-intentioned Americans and Europeans stop eating vegetables from Africa, will Africans have more to eat? Or will we simply deprive African farmers of a living? This program delves into that issue and other food-related problems, some of which have solutions while others urgently await answers. Viewers are shown how tenuous food security in Kenya doesn't stop the country from exporting most of its produce to the West while potentially leasing large portions of arable land to Qatar. The film also profiles small U.K. growers, offers carbon footprint comparisons between livestock producers in New Zealand and Great Britain, and features commentary from Earth Policy Institute president Lester Brown and other experts.

The Green Economy (2014, ~53 min. total)  Series of 3 Episodes: Sustainable Forestry, Fisheries, and Mining

Sustainable Forestry: Growing trees is not totally the job of Mother Nature anymore! Making sure logging doesn’t tax future growth too much is an ever more increasingly important task. Using a relatively new high tech invention, the helicopter, to harvest hasn’t been around that long but offers an interesting alternative to logging. We look at growing, managing and cutting of the new sustainable forest.

Sustainable Fisheries: Beyond Catch & Release policies are experts who are dedicated to making sure the habitat for both commercial and sport fishing stays healthy. The Pacific Ocean is home to literally thousands of species of fish and other creatures. Here in the Northwest one of the best indicators to the health of the ocean is Salmon. The Green Economy looks at how experts are monitoring all aspects of the health of the fish. There are some major breakthroughs from a technical aspect that are making the monitoring all the more accurate.

Sustainable Mining: The history of Butte Montana is forged in the not so environmentally friendly practices of the Copper Kings of the early 20th Century. Now the city leaders and residents are pushing to clean up the sins of the past and also educate those who wish to get into the field of Mine Reclamation at Montana Technical Institute. We go on top and hundreds of feet below the city to get all the angles.

An Inconvenient Truth (2006, 96 min.)  This compelling documentary about the perils of global warming focuses on former vice president Al Gore's multimedia lecture tour, which features persuasive scientific data, computerized charts, photos, animation and archival footage. Directed by Davis Guggenheim.

Into The Wild (2007, 148 min.)  Absorbing fact-based portrait of a college grad (Emile Hirsch) who chucks it all to become a back-to-nature wanderer in the early 1990s. Catherine Keener, Hal Holbrook. Directed by Sean Penn, who adapted the script from the Jon Krakauer bestseller. Featured: a score that includes songs by Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam.

Interstellar (2014, 169 min.) As Earth's atmosphere grows inhospitable to human life, a team of astronauts embarks on a dangerous mission through a wormhole in order to find a habitable planet in a distant galaxy and ensure the survival of humanity.

Mother Nature's Child: Growing Outdoors in the Media Age (2010, 58 min.) Mother Nature's Child marks a moment in time when a living generation can still recall childhoods of free outdoor play. This will not be true for most children growing up today. Contemporary culture has undergone drastic change in the last three decades, forcing children indoors where they increasingly exhibit symptoms of "nature deficit": obesity, depression, and a range of learning disorders. Mother Nature's Child explores the various ways that time in nature promotes children's well-being, contributes to the future of the planet, and nourishes the human spirit.

Shop ‘Til You Drop (2010, 53 min.)  Are we too materialistic? Are we willfully trashing the planet in our pursuit of things? And what's the source of all this frenetic consumer energy and desire anyway? In a fast-paced tour of the ecological and psychological terrain of American consumer culture, SHOP 'TIL YOU DROP challenges us to confront these questions head-on. Taking aim at the high-stress, high-octane pace of fast-lane materialism, the film moves beneath the seductive surfaces of the commercial world to show how the flip side of accumulation is depletion -- the slow, steady erosion of both natural resources and basic human values. In the end, SHOP 'TIL YOU DROP helps us make sense of the economic turbulence of the moment, providing an unflinching, riveting look at the relationship between the limits of consumerism and our never-ending pursuit of happiness.

Explore more awesome documentaries and feature films via IUCAT as well as via IUB's licensed subscriptions to Films for Education, Kanopy and SWANK at Media Services Libguide to Streaming Databases.


From left to right:  Shop til you Drop, An Inconvenient Truth, The Future of  Food Sustainability & SecurityChi-Raq, The Green Economy

Credits: Wikipedia.;

All other images courtesy of, accessed October 2021.

IUB DVD/Video Films

Be sure to check with Media Services for hours.  VHS titles are housed off-site at ALF, and can be requested via IUCAT

After the Warming (1991, 110 min.) It is the year 2050. Mankind and the earth have survived global warming. Social journalist James Burke looks back from the future at several scenarios of global warming and their possible effects on continents, countries and mankind. Presented in two parts, Burke uses a device he calls the 'virtual reality model', a computer effect which projects different environments on a location, to take viewers to turning points in history after 1990 when environmental control choices were made.

The Age of Consequences (2016, 80 min.) "Investigates the impacts of climate change on increased resource scarcity, migration, and conflict through the lens of US national security and global stability. Through unflinching case-study analysis, distinguished admirals, generals and military veterans take us beyond the headlines of the conflict in Syria, the social unrest of the Arab Spring, the rise of radicalized groups like ISIS, and the European refugee crisis -- and lay bare how climate change stressors interact with societal tensions, sparking conflict. Whether a long-term vulnerability or sudden shock, the film unpacks how water and food shortages, drought, extreme weather, and sea-level rise function as 'accelerants of instability' and 'catalysts for conflict' in volatile regions of the world. "--Tugg website.

Anthropocene: The Human Epoch (2018, 27 min.) Filmmakers travel the globe to document the impact humans have made on the planet.

Avatar (2009, 162 min.) "A paraplegic Marine dispatched to the moon Pandora on a unique mission becomes torn between following his orders and protecting the world he feels is his home."--IMDb website.

Damnation (2014), 88 min.) This powerful film odyssey across America explores the sea change in national attitude from pride in big dams as engineering wonders to the growing awareness that our own future is bound to the life and health of our rivers.

The Great Squeeze (2009, 69 min.) Explores the multiple environmental crises including climate change, resource depletion, and species extinction which have resulted from our dependence on cheap and abundant energy.

The Living Planet: A Portrait of Earth (1984, 720 min.) Host David Attenborough visits the great environmental regions of the planet to examine how plants and animals adapt to their surroundings and how otherwise unrelated organisms, molded by similar conditions, develop similar techniques for solving problems of survival.

Soylent Green (1973, 97 min.) Charlton Heston plays a cop in this 21st-century science-fiction horror story. The setting is New York, teeming with 40 million citizens, most of whom are out of work. Environmental erosion is almost complete and voluntary death is encouraged by government-sponsored clinics. For their food, the people have grown to rely almost totally on a greenish, wafer-like substance called soylent. As Heston investigates the murder of a magnate in the dictatorial Soylent Company, he comes face to face with the hideous truth about the secret ingredient of "Soylent Green."

There Once Was an Island; Te Henua e Nnohoe (2010, 56 min.)  "Set in the unique Pacific community of Takū, the film follows the lives of Satty, Telo and Endar as they face the first devastating effects of climate change. Two visiting scientists offer advice but in the wake of a terrifying flood the islanders must decide whether to stay with their island or move to an unfamiliar land, leaving their culture and language behind forever"--Container.

WALL-E (2009), 98 min., []  After hundreds of lonely years, a waste management robot finds a new purpose in life. With only a cockroach for a friend, he finds true love in another robot sent on a mission to Earth to see if it is safe for human life.

Explore more titles related to this topic via IUCAT.


From left to right:  Wall-E, Damnation, The Age of Consequences, Avatar, There Once Was an Island..., Anthropocene, After the Warming, The Great Squeeze, Soylent Green, The Living Planet.

Credits: Nylon.; LATimes. Cinema.

All other images, courtesy of, accessed October 2021.

Internet Resources

Creating Equitable, Healthy, and Sustainable Communities, EPA -- “Creating Equitable, Healthy, and Sustainable Communities: Strategies for Advancing Smart Growth, Environmental Justice, and Equitable Development (2013) aims to build on past successes and offer low-income, minority, tribal, and overburdened communities approaches to shape development that respond to their needs and reflect their values. It provides a menu of land use and community design strategies that bring together smart growth, environmental justice, and equitable development principles and that community-based organizations, local and regional decision-makers, developers, and others can use to revitalize their communities.” --From WebPage

Developing Sustainable Communities, Sandra Ketcham -- Developing sustainable communities requires planning, implementing, and promoting sustainability goals that benefit individual citizens, the community, and the planet. Sustainability is important for environmental, social, and economic reasons. Sustainability practices can be integrated into an existing community, but are typically easier to plan and carry out during community development.

Sustain IU, Indiana University, Bloomington --  Homepage of IUB’s Office of Sustainability. Contains a compilation of IU’s sustainability resources.

Sustainable Campus, Indiana Wildlife Federation -- Schools don’t need to sacrifice aesthetics for sustainability when designing and maintaining campus grounds. Environmental stewardship can reduce the impact a campus has on Indiana’s ecosystems while enhancing visual appeal and reducing maintenance costs.

What Is A Sustainable Community, Institute for Sustainable Communities -- “A sustainable community takes into account, and addresses, multiple human needs, not just one at the exclusion of all others. It is a place where people of diverse backgrounds and perspectives feel welcome and safe, where every group has a seat at the decision-making table, and where prosperity is shared.” --From WebPage