Mission: Stream These Animal-Friendly Movies With Friends

After a busy day, you’re ready to sit back, chill, and watch a captivating movie—but which one? Scrolling through the overwhelming number of options on different streaming services can take longer than watching the movie you finally pick!

We can help you out. We dug into recent cinematic history and compiled a list of our favorite animal-friendly movies. Whether you want to go on a suspenseful adventure, increase your brainpower, or learn more about animal rights, there’s a movie on our list for you. All you have to do is grab some vegan snacks, get comfy, and start watching. 😊

Mainstream Animal-Friendly Movies

These films weren’t made specifically to promote animal rights, but they deal directly with issues that affect animals through their storylines.

Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde (Rated PG-13)

In Legally Blonde 2, iconic Harvard Law School graduate Elle Woods (played by Reese Witherspoon) wants her Chihuahua, Bruiser, to reunite with his mother. But when she learns that a cruel cosmetics company has imprisoned and is experimenting on Bruiser’s mom, she sets out for Washington, D.C., to get a bill passed that would ban animal testing. Leave it to the Legally Blonde team to make a hilarious movie that also gives us grassroots advocacy tips.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (Rated PG-13)

Action, adventure, and animal rights rule the third Guardians of the Galaxy movie. One of 2023’s hottest films, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 reveals Rocket Raccoon’s past as an animal forced to endure painful experiments in a lab. Start streaming on Vudu, Apple TV, Google Play, and other services on July 7 and see for yourself why this the animal right community is giving this groundbreaking Marvel film glowing reviews.

Okja (Rated R)

The sci-fi movie Okja, directed by Bong Joon-ho, follows a young girl named Mija and her “super pig” companion, Okja, in their scenic South Korean home. Their peaceful lives turn upside down when a conglomerate kidnaps Okja and takes her to New York. Join Mija as she teams up with members of the Animal Liberation Front and fights to save her friend from a bloody slaughterhouse death.

Rise of the Planet of the Apes (Rated PG-13)

A biotech company injects a chimpanzee with a drug that raises her intelligence. Workers soon shoot her to death—but not before she gives birth to an equally brainy son named Caesar. Super-smart Caesar is taken away to a shelter where he shares the drugs with his fellow inmates and assembles a powerful army of apes. While the exciting plot is fictional, the depictions of imprisoning and experimenting on animals—and the trauma it causes—are painfully realistic.

Discussion Questions for Any of the Above Movies

  • What is positive and what is negative about the relationships between humans and animals in this movie?
  • What is the main source of conflict in the movie?
  • How are the animal characters in this movie similar to and different from real-life members of their species?
  • Do humans treat the animal characters in the movie fairly?
  • After having watched this movie, do you feel that animals deserve rights?

Animal Rights Documentaries

These documentaries cover various aspects of the animal rights movement. Many people attribute these movies to jumpstarting their own animal rights or vegan journey. Whether you watch on your own or with friends, these films are sure to get you thinking, so we’ve also included discussion questions below.

The Animal People

We can’t get enough of Joaquin Phoenix, the executive producer of this film. The Joker star gives us an exclusive look inside a radical animal rights campaign by dropping us right into the action as six young activists fight to take down the world’s largest animal-testing lab—and end up being the first animal advocates indicted for domestic terrorism. 😶


This animal rights masterpiece is a tear-jerker but a super-important film to watch. It tells the story of Tilikum, an orca who humans captured when he was only 2 years old and eventually sold to SeaWorld. The heart-breaking film shows that orcas endure extreme psychological distress when kidnapped from their families and held captive in miserable, cramped conditions. 

Food, Inc.

Many movies have inspired people to go vegan, but when it comes to sheer impact, Food, Inc. might take the cake. By exposing the U.S. food industry’s horrific effects on animals, workers, and consumers, Food, Inc. woke up an entire generation to the need for a food revolution. Check out this classic and be sure to keep an eye on the sequel that’s projected to drop later this year. 😉

Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret

No question—raising animals for food is one of the worst things for the environment. And that’s why Kip Andersen and Keegan Kuhn made this documentary, which sheds light on the way animal agriculture is pushing climate change, deforestation, and water waste to a dangerous tipping point for everyone on the planet.


Another “-spiracy” documentary, this Kip Andersen–produced Netflix original uncovers more of the harm inflicted by humanity—but this time, on marine life. Director Ali Tabrizi shows how human activities like commercial fishing and water pollution are catastrophic for animals living in the ocean. He rejects half-measures and instead calls for a complete end to fish consumption. 💪

Long Gone Wild

Picking up where Blackfish left off, Long Gone Wild helps us understand orcas’ enormous capacity for thinking, feeling, and empathizing. Through haunting footage and interviews with leading animal rights experts, the film makes a damning case against keeping orcas in captivity and exposes their biggest threats, from SeaWorld to mega-aquariums in China.

The Ghosts in Our Machine

As haunting as its title, this film by Liz Marshall follows photojournalist Jo-Anne McArthur as she uses her camera to capture images of animals trapped in hellish environments as a way of advocating for reform. If you love taking photos, writing, or filming and want to use it to help animals, The Ghosts in Our Machine is your ultimate artivist inspo movie. 

What the Health

We all want to be as healthy as possible, right? Well, Kip Andersen is back again with one of the best tips for keeping your body in prime shape—going vegan. What the Health criticizes the harmful effects of eating meat, eggs, and dairy on your health, giving us yet another reason to ditch animal products and enjoy the wide variety of delicious vegan foods.

The Cove

This Oscar winner for Best Documentary Feature calls out cruel dolphin-hunting practices and pushes for change. By disguising equipment as rocks, The Cove’s cam crew was able to record humans hunting dolphins in Japan. Shocking footage of the hunt and brave activists putting their own safety on the line make this one of the most heart-pumping documentaries you’ll ever see. 

The Dark Hobby

Hawaii is paradise for humans, but the aquarium trade turns the gorgeous islands into grisly hellscapes for reef fish. The Dark Hobby exposes the nasty industry of capturing and trafficking in beautiful fish and demolishing the reef ecosystem. It hammers home the point that our fascination with brilliantly colored fish doesn’t give us the right to confine them to cramped tanks and deprive them of everything natural and meaningful to them. 

All That Breathes

Through the suffocating smog in New Delhi, India, two brothers see something fall from the polluted sky. It’s a black kite, a medium-sized raptor. Their city’s sky has always been speckled with these birds of prey, but now black kites are dropping out of the thick haze on a daily basis. Watch as the brothers set up a makeshift bird hospital and struggle to rehabilitate the birds amid worsening pollution and social unrest.

Punk Rock Vegan Movie

For decades, the punk scene has been ground zero for vegan activism. Moby, the acclaimed musician and activist, made this movie to explore the unique relationship between punk rock and animal rights. Featuring interviews with dozens of punk rock legends, Punk Rock Vegan Movie shows that the punk scene’s high-voltage rebellious nature goes hand in hand with the fight for animal rights.

Eating Our Way to Extinction

Credit where credit is due—Mother Earth is breathtaking. 🙌 🌎 In Eating Our Way to Extinction, Oscar-winning actor Kate Winslet takes us on a world tour from the depths of the Amazon rainforest to the majestic Norwegian fjords. But this journey doesn’t just serve to wow us with nature’s beauty—it also lays out the hard truth about our planet’s ecological crisis and stresses that going vegan is our best shot at saving the planet before it’s too late.


Directed by Chris Delforce, Dominion is divided into 18 segments, each covering the exploitation of one or two species in different ways, such as for experimentation, food, or clothing. By covering as much ground as possible, Dominion emphasizes how far-reaching our mistreatment of other animals really is.

Earthlings (Viewer Discretion Advised)

When a movie released two decades ago is still just as relevant today, you know its subject matter is timeless. Earthlings questions our ethics by scrutinizing our use of animals for experimentation, food, clothing, entertainment, and companionship. With superstar Joaquin Phoenix as narrator, Earthlings also shows that speciesism runs parallel to other forms of oppression.

Discussion Questions for Any of the Above Movies

  • Why did the director/producer/writer make this movie?
  • What are three things that you learned from the movie about animal rights?
  • How did you feel during the various scenes?
  • After watching this movie, did your view on the topic change?
  • What industries does this movie target, and how do you think they should change in order to address the problems with them that were depicted in the movie?


As young animal advocates, we need to be in the know about the most pressing issues, and watching the movies described above is an effortless, even entertaining, way to inform ourselves and our friends. Spread the movies’ animal rights messages and earn 25 peta2 points by following these three steps:

1. Watch at least one of the movies with a friend or a sibling.

2. Take a picture of it playing on your screen.

3. Submit the pic using the form below.

(Heads-up: You’ll only be awarded points for taking this action once.)

PETA-owned screenshot of the movie Blackfish

Watching movies is only one way to boost your knowledge—check out our picks for must-read animal rights books for teens if you want to be swept up in thrilling stories on the subject. Even if reading isn’t your vibe, at least one of these inspiring books or any of their audiobook versions will definitely open your eyes to some new, compassionate ideas. ❤️

Text peta2 to 30933 for ways to help animals, tips on compassionate living, and more!

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