Editor’s Note: After reading Helpful Products, Dangerous Toxins by Fatima Ramirez, reader Adriana Garcia wrote in to commend Fatima for her article. She suggested Fatima watch Bag It, a documentary about the impact of plastics on the environment, marine animals and human health. The following is Fatima’s review of Bag It.
FATIMA RAMIREZ/Coachella Unincorporated
With a perfect blend of humor and eye-opening truth, Jeb Berrier sets out to discover the path a plastic bag takes once it’s disposed. The documentary Bag It goes on to explore the awe-stricken moment Berrier experiences while purchasing a peach yogurt and carrying it home in a single plastic bag which he eventually throws away.
Such revelation proves to have an impact on Berrier, a self-proclaimed “average guy [who is] not what you consider a tree hugger.” He begins to realize that not only plastic bags, but also plastic itself, is the most produced material and is essentially everywhere.
Berrier’s normal-guy appeal serves to flawlessly entertain the audience while explaining hard-hitting facts and the repercussions of a plastic world. The film goes onto exploring the many aspects of plastic, from its manufacturing and distribution to its disposal and the many misconceptions that unknowingly come with it.
The film becomes more in-depth and personal when Berrier discovers his wife is pregnant. Upon such news, he begins to passionately change his ways and examine different options to everyday activities such as shopping, drinking coffee, and eating. This experience helps the audience realize how vulnerable children are to chemicals like BPA and phthalates, which are in almost every single form of plastic.
In addition to dealing with the effects plastics have on human bodies, Bag It also touches on the subject of its increasing impact on marine life. When you consider the fact that all plastic caught in drains ends up in the ocean and the statistics on diminishing species, it is easy to see how plastic has managed to pose a threat to ocean animals as well.
With interviews of experts, scientists, and environmentalists – along with side commentary from Jeb Berrier himself – this documentary enlightens the consumer about the many ways plastic is in their daily lives. Not only does it explain its effects, but it also encourages alternate options.
Easily relatable to everyone, Bag It is the perfect film for anyone wanting to become more informed about the prominent role plastic plays in their lives and how they can make changes that will benefit all of us.
Come watch Bag It with Coachella Unincorporated on Monday, June 17, 3 p.m. at Raices Cultura, 1494 Sixth Street.