“STRAWS” | #NBFF 2017 Official Selection


“STRAWS” is a film by Linda Booker that comes in an unassuming package. But delivers a vitally important message as its brings awareness to a problem caused by us all as we go about our daily lives. When many people think of documentaries, they think of solemn films, filled with endless waves of stats and evidence to support whatever beliefs the creator is shooting for. Many often tend to drag, and even when the topic may be a substantial one, sometimes the message can be lost in its delivery. Something that can happen in a variety of ways.

The delivery, is something this film uses to its advantage as it drops one simple, but monumentally imposing message with only six words. “Plastic straws are not recyclable.” Who know this? I certainly did not. As I watched this film and thought back about the times I felt like I was doing my part by disposing of my plastic cup in the recycle bin, unknowing my straw would wind up in the landfill regardless, felt like a kick in the stomach.

What makes this worse is that straws are not even a necessity but are in fact quite inessential to us consuming beverages. Yet, on a daily basis we dispose of staggering numbers of them. This film passes that message on and then follows it with a solid foundation of facts to paint a clear picture of the situation. It doesn’t continue to pound that fact away, but instead it changes the direction and does something that can often make for a fantastic documentary.

It turns the focus to how the problem or situation can be slowed and one day eliminated. How we can make a change, as well as practices and changes that businesses can make to diminish their imprint in the landfills. What is so enjoyable about this film is that it isn’t the beginning and the end. This film is a small spark to a much larger agenda of keeping our planet clean, and raising awareness to us all that we can make a large difference despite being just one person.

As for the film itself, it was a perfect blend of educational and entertaining. With a run-time hovering just under thirty-minutes and a soothing narration from Tim Robbins, you are left wanting more. Despite the ability of it to fit an hour worth of information in with some to the point writing and crisp direction. “STRAWS” is a documentary we all should watch because its topic is one that relates to all of us.

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