Favorite Documentaries

by bfomara | created - 09 Sep 2016 | updated - 1 month ago | Public
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1. Bowling for Columbine (2002)

R | 120 min | Documentary, Crime, Drama

72 Metascore

Filmmaker Michael Moore explores the roots of America's predilection for gun violence.

Director: Michael Moore | Stars: Michael Moore, Charlton Heston, Marilyn Manson, Salvador Allende

Votes: 135,562 | Gross: $21.24M

2. The Times of Harvey Milk (1984)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary, Biography, History

A documentary of the successful career and assassination of San Francisco's first elected gay city supervisor.

Director: Rob Epstein | Stars: Harvey Fierstein, Harvey Milk, Anne Kronenberg, Tory Hartmann

Votes: 5,275 | Gross: $0.01M

3. Microcosmos (1996)

G | 80 min | Documentary

A documentary on insect life in meadows and ponds.

Directors: Claude Nuridsany, Marie Pérennou | Stars: Kristin Scott Thomas, Jacques Perrin

Votes: 10,292 | Gross: $1.57M

4. Making a Murderer (2015– )

TV-14 | 60 min | Documentary, Crime

Filmed over a 10-year period, Steven Avery, a DNA exoneree who, while in the midst of exposing corruption in local law enforcement, finds himself the prime suspect in a grisly new crime.

Stars: Dolores Avery, Steven Avery, Ken Kratz, Brendan Dassey

Votes: 78,747

5. Goodbye Uncle Tom (1971)

Unrated | 123 min | Drama

Two documentary filmmakers go back in time to the pre-Civil War American South, to film the slave trade.

Directors: Gualtiero Jacopetti, Franco Prosperi | Stars: Stefano Sibaldi, Dick Gregory, Gualtiero Jacopetti, Ernest Kubler

Votes: 1,241

6. Blackfish (2013)

PG-13 | 83 min | Documentary, News

83 Metascore

A documentary following the controversial captivity of killer whales, and its dangers for both humans and whales.

Director: Gabriela Cowperthwaite | Stars: Tilikum, Dave Duffus, Samantha Berg, Dean Gomersall

Votes: 57,332 | Gross: $2.06M

7. 13th (2016)

TV-MA | 100 min | Documentary, Crime, News

88 Metascore

An in-depth look at the prison system in the United States and how it reveals the nation's history of racial inequality.

Director: Ava DuVernay | Stars: Melina Abdullah, Michelle Alexander, Cory Booker, Dolores Canales

Votes: 20,357

8. Antonio Gaudí (1984)

Not Rated | 72 min | Documentary

The work of Catalan architect Antonio Gaudí, as seen by Japanese New Wave director Hiroshi Teshigahara.

Director: Hiroshi Teshigahara | Stars: Isidro Puig Boada, Antoni Gaudí, Seiji Miyaguchi

Votes: 1,193

9. Grizzly Man (2005)

R | 103 min | Documentary, Biography

87 Metascore

A devastating and heart-rending take on grizzly bear activists Timothy Treadwell and Amie Huguenard, who were killed in October of 2003 while living among grizzly bears in Alaska.

Director: Werner Herzog | Stars: Timothy Treadwell, Amie Huguenard, Werner Herzog, Carol Dexter

Votes: 48,841 | Gross: $3.17M

10. And Everything Is Going Fine (2010)

Not Rated | 89 min | Documentary

76 Metascore

A look at the art of Spalding Gray who drew from real life experience to create a compelling and deeply personal series of monologues.

Director: Steven Soderbergh | Stars: Spalding Gray, Forrest Gray, Kathie Russo

Votes: 992 | Gross: $0.02M

11. Life (2009)

TV-G | 473 min | Documentary

David Attenborough's legendary BBC crew explains and shows wildlife all over planet earth in 10 episodes. The first is an overview of the challenges facing life, the others are dedicated to... See full summary »

Stars: Oprah Winfrey, David Attenborough, Doug Allan, Barrie Britton

Votes: 35,007

12. The Pervert's Guide to Ideology (2012)

Not Rated | 136 min | Documentary

71 Metascore

Philosopher Slavoj Zizek examines the hidden themes and existential questions asked by world renowned films.

Director: Sophie Fiennes | Star: Slavoj Zizek

Votes: 5,682 | Gross: $0.07M

13. Planet Earth II (2016)

TV-G | 298 min | Documentary

David Attenborough returns in this breathtaking documentary showcasing life on Planet Earth.

Star: David Attenborough

Votes: 79,248

14. Planet Earth (2006)

TV-PG | 538 min | Documentary

Emmy Award-winning, 11 episodes, five years in the making, the most expensive nature documentary series ever commissioned by the BBC, and the first to be filmed in high definition.

Stars: David Attenborough, Sigourney Weaver, Huw Cordey, Doug Allan

Votes: 152,830

15. The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst (2015)

TV-14 | 279 min | Documentary, Crime

Filmmaker Andrew Jarecki examines the complicated life of reclusive real estate icon Robert Durst, the key suspect in a series of unsolved crimes.

Stars: Robert Durst, Andrew Jarecki, Gary Napoli, Debra Kay Anderson

Votes: 34,230

16. The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters (2007)

PG-13 | 79 min | Documentary, Biography

83 Metascore

Die-hard gamers compete to break world records on classic arcade games.

Director: Seth Gordon | Stars: Steve Wiebe, Billy Mitchell, Mark Alpiger, Adam Wood

Votes: 33,465 | Gross: $0.68M

17. My Scientology Movie (2015)

Not Rated | 99 min | Documentary

62 Metascore

Louis Theroux documents his investigation into what goes on behind the scenes of the infamous Church of Scientology.

Director: John Dower | Stars: Louis Theroux, Tom Cruise, Marty Rathbun, Paz de la Huerta

Votes: 11,065 | Gross: $0.02M

18. Tickled (2016)

R | 92 min | Documentary, Mystery

76 Metascore

Journalist David Farrier stumbles upon a mysterious tickling competition online. As he delves deeper he comes up against fierce resistance, but that doesn't stop him getting to the bottom of a story stranger than fiction.

Directors: David Farrier, Dylan Reeve | Stars: David Farrier, Dylan Reeve, David Starr, Kevin Clarke

Votes: 14,239 | Gross: $0.61M

19. Weiner (2016)

R | 96 min | Documentary

84 Metascore

An examination of disgraced New York Congressman Anthony Weiner's mayoral campaign and today's political landscape.

Directors: Josh Kriegman, Elyse Steinberg | Stars: Anthony Weiner, Huma Abedin, Jordan Zain Weiner, Barbara Morgan

Votes: 9,151 | Gross: $1.61M

20. After Tiller (2013)

PG-13 | 85 min | Documentary, Biography, Drama

75 Metascore

After the assassination of Dr. George Tiller in Kansas in 2009, there are a limited number of doctors left in the country who provide third-trimester abortions for women. AFTER TILLER moves... See full summary »

Directors: Martha Shane, Lana Wilson | Stars: George Tiller, Warren Hern, Leroy Carhart, Susan Robinson

Votes: 981 | Gross: $0.07M

21. I Am Not Your Negro (2016)

PG-13 | 93 min | Documentary

95 Metascore

Writer James Baldwin tells the story of race in modern America with his unfinished novel, Remember This House.

Director: Raoul Peck | Stars: Samuel L. Jackson, James Baldwin, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X

Votes: 14,362 | Gross: $7.12M

22. Mommy Dead and Dearest (2017)

TV-MA | 82 min | Documentary, Crime

In this documentary, the murder of Deedee Blanchard by her daughter Gypsey Rose is explored, as well as the circumstances leading up to the event.

Director: Erin Lee Carr | Stars: Jim Arnott, David Blanchard, Dee Dee Blanchard, Gypsy Rose Blanchard

Votes: 6,040

Just like making a murderer, this documentary shows us how lives can be ruined by the obvious cracks and loopholes in our system when they are exploited by narcissistic individuals.

23. Sugar Coated (2015)

90 min | Documentary

How the food industry sugar-coated science, sweetened the food supply, and seduced a planet, one spoonful at a time.

Director: Michèle Hozer | Stars: Gary Taubes, Robert Lustig, Craig Wilcox, Alexis Gomez

Votes: 752

24. Fed Up (2014)

PG | 92 min | Documentary

71 Metascore

An examination of America's obesity epidemic and the food industry's role in aggravating it.

Director: Stephanie Soechtig | Stars: Michele Simon, Bill Clinton, Katie Couric, Michael Bloomberg

Votes: 10,946 | Gross: $1.54M

25. The Cartel (2009)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary

59 Metascore

American public schools have been growing progressively worse. According to the U.S. Department of Education national testing, only 35% of American high school seniors are proficient in ... See full summary »

Director: Bob Bowdon | Stars: Bob Bowdon, Bill Baroni, Rick Berman, Michael Bloomberg

Votes: 185 | Gross: $0.01M

26. Freakonomics (2010)

PG-13 | 85 min | Documentary

58 Metascore

A collection of documentaries that explores the hidden side of human nature through the use of the science of economics.

Directors: Heidi Ewing, Alex Gibney, Seth Gordon, Rachel Grady, Eugene Jarecki, Morgan Spurlock | Stars: James Ransone, Morgan Spurlock, Tempestt Bledsoe, Bill Gates

Votes: 6,507 | Gross: $0.10M

27. The War Room (1993)

PG | 96 min | Documentary, History

A documentary of the Bill Clinton 1992 presidential campaign and the organization who ran it.

Directors: Chris Hegedus, D.A. Pennebaker | Stars: James Carville, George Stephanopoulos, Heather Beckel, Paul Begala

Votes: 3,575 | Gross: $0.90M

28. 24x36: A Movie About Movie Posters (2016)

82 min | Documentary, Biography, History

A documentary exploring the birth, death, and resurrection of the illustrated movie poster.

Director: Kevin Burke | Stars: Paul Ainsworth, Dave Alexander, Andrea Alvin, David Byrd

Votes: 556

29. Red Army (2014)

PG | 84 min | Documentary, Biography, History

83 Metascore

The story of the Soviet Union's famed Red Army hockey team through the eyes of its players.

Director: Gabe Polsky | Stars: Viacheslav Fetisov, Scotty Bowman, Herb Brooks, Don Cherry

Votes: 6,201 | Gross: $0.69M

30. I Am Divine (2013)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary

70 Metascore

How Divine, aka Harris Glenn Milstead, became John Waters' cinematic muse and an international drag icon.

Director: Jeffrey Schwarz | Stars: Divine, Michael Musto, Mark Payne, Greg Gorman

Votes: 2,042 | Gross: $0.06M

31. Jodorowsky's Dune (2013)

PG-13 | 90 min | Documentary

79 Metascore

The story of cult film director Alejandro Jodorowsky's ambitious but ultimately doomed film adaptation of the seminal science fiction novel.

Director: Frank Pavich | Stars: Alejandro Jodorowsky, Michel Seydoux, H.R. Giger, Chris Foss

Votes: 19,365 | Gross: $0.65M

32. Exit Through the Gift Shop (2010)

R | 87 min | Documentary, Comedy, Crime

85 Metascore

The story of how an eccentric French shop-keeper and amateur film-maker attempted to locate and befriend Banksy, only to have the artist turn the camera back on its owner. The film contains... See full summary »

Director: Banksy | Stars: Banksy, Mr. Brainwash, Space Invader, Debora Guetta

Votes: 59,165 | Gross: $3.29M

33. Inferno (2009)

Not Rated | 100 min | Documentary

Henri-Georges Clouzot's unfinished masterpiece, Inferno (1964), is reconstructed in this film which is part drama and part documentary.

Directors: Serge Bromberg, Ruxandra Medrea | Stars: Romy Schneider, Bérénice Bejo, Serge Reggiani, Jacques Gamblin

Votes: 1,436 | Gross: $0.02M

34. Girl 27 (2007)

Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary, Biography

The reclusive Patricia Douglas comes out of hiding to discuss the 1937 MGM scandal, in which the powerful film studio tricked her and over 100 other underage girls into attending a stag party, where she was raped.

Director: David Stenn | Stars: Patricia Douglas, Baby Peggy, Richard W. Bann, Kelly Brown

Votes: 776

35. The Culture High (2014)

TV-14 | 120 min | Documentary, News

37 Metascore

Scours the deep-seated roots of this morally induced Marijuana campaign and reveal the fascinating path it has taken to get to where it is today.

Director: Brett Harvey | Stars: Joe Rogan, Snoop Dogg, Penn Jillette, Ronald Reagan

Votes: 3,491

36. The Pervert's Guide to Cinema (2006)

150 min | Documentary

Slavoj Zizek examines famous films in a philosophical and a psychoanalytic context.

Director: Sophie Fiennes | Star: Slavoj Zizek

Votes: 5,823

37. Streetwise (1984)

91 min | Documentary

Gritty documentary that looks at the lives of teenagers living on the streets of Seattle.

Director: Martin Bell | Stars: Roberta Joseph Hayes, Baby Gramps, Erin Blackwell, Lou Ellen Couch

Votes: 1,474 | Gross: $0.01M

38. Chernobyl (2019)

TV-MA | 330 min | Drama, History, Thriller

In April 1986, an explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics becomes one of the world's worst man-made catastrophes.

Stars: Jessie Buckley, Jared Harris, Stellan Skarsgård, Adam Nagaitis

Votes: 356,373

39. Female Human Animal (2018)

Not Rated | 74 min | Mystery, Romance, Thriller

Shot in the real-life contemporary art world, FEMALE HUMAN ANIMAL is a psychothriller about a creative woman disenchanted with what modern life has to offer her. When writer Chloe Aridjis ... See full summary »

Director: Josh Appignanesi | Stars: Chloe Aridjis, Marc Hosemann, Angus Wright, Ariadne Arendt

Votes: 123

40. Who Is Arthur Chu? (2017)

89 min | Documentary

Arthur Chu hacked Jeopardy. and won big. Now, he's using his newfound online celebrity to battle dark forces on the internet as a blogger and cultural pundit. Raw, unfiltered and poignant, ... See full summary »

Directors: Scott J. Drucker, Yu Gu | Stars: Alex Trebek, Elisa Melendez, Rocque Trem, Arthur Chu

Votes: 82

41. The Russian Five (2018)

Not Rated | 102 min | Documentary, Sport

75 Metascore

In the late 1980s, the Detroit Red Wings worked to finally break their decades long Stanley Cup drought by extracting players from the Soviet Union, and in the process, changed the way North American hockey is played.

Director: Joshua Riehl | Stars: Jeff Daniels, Jim Devellano, Sergei Fedorov, Viacheslav Fetisov

Votes: 327 | Gross: $0.44M

42. Bulkland (2017 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 58 min | Documentary

Migrant workers, factory bosses and nightclub dancers try to carve out a slice of the pie in the city the dollar store built. But China is changing. Selling cheap junk isn't what it used to be.

Director: Daniel Whelan

Votes: 26

43. Plastic China (2016)

82 min | Documentary

A portrait of poverty, ambition and hope set in a world of waste.

Director: Jiuliang Wang

Votes: 367

44. A Life in Waves (2017)

Not Rated | 74 min | Documentary, Biography, Musical

A Life in Waves explores the life and innovations of composer and electronic music pioneer, Suzanne Ciani.

Director: Brett Whitcomb | Stars: Peter Baumann, Don Buchla, Dorit Chrysler, Suzanne Ciani

Votes: 88



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