Microplastic Madness

No Longer Available

Virtual Available In:USA
Ticket Prices
General Public:$13.00 (+ $2 online fee)
Members:$10.00 (no online fee)
Film Info
Premiere Status:Minnesota Premiere
Programs:Nextwave Global Features
Women & Film
Spotlight: Common Ground
Women Directors
Includes Q&A
Release Year:2019
Runtime:76 min
Festivals & Awards:Greenpoint Film Festival 2020 - Grand Jury Award
Children's Film Festival Seattle 2020 - Best Documentary Feature Award
Cinema Verde Environmental Film and Art Festival 2020 - Best Solution Award
Print Source:Cafeteria Culture
Director:Atsuko Quirk
Debby Lee Cohen
Producer:Atsuko Quirk
Debby Lee Cohen
Cinematographer:Atsuko Quirk
Editor:Atsuko Quirk


Your ticket includes a special recorded Filmmaker Q&A and Science on Screen conversation following the film. Featuring Debby Lee Cohen (Co-Director), Atsuko Quirk (Co-Director), Jennifer Wendt (Mississippi River Plastic Pollution Initiative), Milky Osman (Environmental Justice Crew at the Kitty Andersen Youth Science Center, Science Museum of Minnesota).

How to Watch

Can 11 year-olds take on plastic pollution? Fifth graders from Brooklyn spend two years leading a challenge against the pervasive use of plastics, asking probing questions about the local and global impacts on people, wildlife, and water systems. Using their own data to testify and rally City Hall, the young activists take action in their lunchroom to eliminate single-use plastic.

Documenting a citizen science project, Microplastic Madness features empowered city kids telling their own story of environmental activism with animated student artwork illustrating their findings. Following interviews and discussions with teachers, workers, community members and scientists about root causes and inequitable impacts of pollution, the kids take their rally to the streets to get the attention of lawmakers and politicians. Providing an essential educational platform for climate justice, Microplastic Madness is an all ages testimonial, an urgent message, and a refreshing wake up call that inspires individual change and collective accountability to the children who most clearly see our future. (Deb Girdwood)

Recommended for ages 9+

Creative pairings of classic, cult, and documentary films with lively introductions by notable figures from the world of science, technology, and medicine. An initiative of the COOLIDGE CORNER THEATRE, with major support from the ALFRED P. SLOAN FOUNDATION.

Director Biography

Atsuko Quirk Raised in Northern Japan and living in New York City, Atsuko Quirk, is a 21st generation Samurai family member and documentary filmmaker. She is the director of the short documentaries “School Lunch in Japan - It’s Not Just About Eating" (2010) and "It’s Everybody’s Ocean" (2012), which won Best Documentary Short at NYC International Film Festival.

Debby Lee Cohen Debby Lee Cohen is a multi-disciplinary artist, educator, and Zero Waste activist who lives in New York City. She has created scenery, puppets, and animation for theater, parades, film and television, and has worked with HBO, PBS and MTV.?? She designed a children’s parade with giant puppets in Paris and the lead puppets for New York’s Halloween Parade, and designed scenery for productions at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Houston Grand Opera, and Lincoln Center.