While much of the Eastern Seaboard in Australia is in lockdown, it seemed unreasonable to provide you with some travel inspiration this week, so we thought we’d revisit what’s on the box for ocean lovers. Some new films are now available to stream, including Playing with Sharks and Envoy: Shark Cull, and we’ve come up with a list of all-time favourites to stream with the family!
1. Playing with Sharks
Valerie Taylor is an Australian icon, a marine maverick who forged her way as a fearless diver, cinematographer and conservationist. She filmed the real sharks for Jaws and famously wore a chain mail suit, using herself as shark bait, in experiments that changed scientific understanding of sharks forever.
Her love affair with the ocean spanned half a century… and a whole lot of danger. This powerful and visually sumptuous 90-minute documentary will draw on 50 years of re-mastered film footage, with a stranger than fiction script, a magnetic heroine, and world-famous faces. And, of course, sharks. Stream it on Disney+
2. Envoy Shark Cull
Join some of the biggest names in ocean conservation, such as Sea Shepherd, Ocean Ramsey and Madison Stewart. Envoy: Shark Cull is a fascinating, deeply moving documentary narrated by Eric Bana, which sheds light on the real story behind the coastal ‘shark safety’ programs in Queensland and New South Wales. Stream it here
Documentary film maker Ali Tabrizi explores the darker sides of the fishing industry, calling “sustainable” fishing into question. Seaspiracy examines the global fishing industry, challenging notions of sustainable fishing and showing how human actions cause widespread environmental destruction. Stream it on Netflix.
4. My Octopus Teacher
When diving the same seaforest daily for a year to befriend an octopus, Craig Fosters discovers there is no line between humanity and the natural world. Stream it on Netflix.
A Studio Ghibli masterpiece – this Japanese animated feature is a must for ocean lovers. A retelling of The Little Mermaid, in which a goldfish princess takes a forbidden trip topside and encounters a human boy named Sosuke, who gives her the name Ponyo. Ponyo longs to become human, and as her friendship with Sosuke grows, she becomes more humanlike. Ponyo’s father brings her back to their ocean kingdom, but so strong is Ponyo’s wish to live on the surface that she breaks free, and in the process, spills a collection of magical elixirs that endanger Sosuke’s village. Watch it on Netflix.
6. Finding Nemo and Finding Dory
Can you believe this classic is almost 20 years old! When disaster strikes, remember the mantra “just keep swimming.” An animated favourite for the whole family, Finding Nemo features a quirky cast of marine creatures who help clownfish Marlin find his son, Nemo. Stream it on Disney+
Also, these Pixar Side by Side ‘making-of’ clips on the Pixar YouTube Channel are awesome!
Welcome to the EAC
Marlin and Dory in the Jellyfish Forest
Following years of waiting for an Aquaman movie, this did everything expected of it – non-stop action and adventure which spans the vast underwater world of the seven seas. The storyline is a rather predictable superhero affair but what’s not to love about that? Rent it on YouTube.
You can’t talk about the best ocean movies without also mentioning the famous Jaws franchise. Despite there not being much scuba-related content, this movie forever changed the perception of sharks for many people. This is often cited as one of the most groundbreaking motion pictures of all time but it has undeniably contributed to the image of sharks as man-eaters around the world. Watch it on Stan.