Documentaries you shouldn't miss

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1.
Grizzly Man (2005 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A devastating and heartrending take on grizzly bear activists Timothy Treadwell and Amie Huguenard, who were killed in October of 2003 while living among grizzlies in Alaska. (103 mins.)
Director: Werner Herzog
 
2.
The Act of Killing (2012 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
A documentary which challenges former Indonesian death-squad leaders to reenact their mass-killings in whichever cinematic genres they wish, including classic Hollywood crime scenarios and lavish musical numbers. (115 mins.)
 
3.
Paris Is Burning (1990 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A chronicle of New York's drag scene in the 1980s, focusing on balls, voguing and the ambitions and dreams of those who gave the era its warmth and vitality. (71 mins.)
 
4.
Little Dieter Needs to Fly (1997 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
German-American Dieter Dengler discusses his service as an American naval pilot in the Vietnam War. Dengler also revisits the sites of his capture and eventual escape from the hands of the Vietcong, recreating many events for the camera. (80 mins.)
Director: Werner Herzog
 
5.
My Best Fiend (1999 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
In the 1950s, an adolescent Werner Herzog was transfixed by a film performance of the young Klaus Kinski... (95 mins.)
Director: Werner Herzog
 
6.
The Century of the Self (2002 Mini-Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.0/10 X  
A documentary about the rise of psychoanalysis as a powerfull mean of persuasion for both governments and corporations. (240 mins.)
 
7.
Marjoe (1972 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
Part documentary, part expose, this film follows one-time child evangelist Marjoe Gortner on the "church tent" Revivalist circuit... (88 mins.)
 
8.
Blackfish (2013 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A documentary following the controversial captivity of killer whales, and its dangers for both humans and whales. (83 mins.)
 
9.
The Cove (2009 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
Using state-of-the-art equipment, a group of activists, led by renowned dolphin trainer Ric O'Barry, infiltrate a cove near Taijii, Japan to expose both a shocking instance of animal abuse and a serious threat to human health. (92 mins.)
Director: Louie Psihoyos
 
10.
The Imposter (2012 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A documentary centered on a young man in Spain who claims to a grieving Texas family that he is their 16-year-old son who has been missing for 3 years. (99 mins.)
Director: Bart Layton
 
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12.
Crumb (1994 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
An intimate portrait of the controversial cartoonist and his traumatized family. (119 mins.)
Director: Terry Zwigoff
 
13.
An Unreasonable Man (2006 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A look at the career of consumer advocate Ralph Nader from wannabe presidential candidate to public pariah. (122 mins.)
 
14.
The Eyes of Tammy Faye (2000 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A documentary look, mostly through the eyes of Tammy Faye Bakker Messner, at her rise and fall as a popular televangelist with husband Jim Bakker... (79 mins.)
 
15.
You've Been Trumped (2011 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
In this David and Goliath story for the 21st century, a group of proud Scottish homeowners take on celebrity tycoon Donald Trump as he buys up one of Scotland's last wilderness areas to build a golf resort. (95 mins.)
Director: Anthony Baxter
 
16.
Nostalgia for the Light (2010 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
In Chile's Atacama Desert, astronomers peer deep into the cosmos in search for answers concerning the origins of life... (90 mins.)
 
17.
Capturing the Friedmans (2003 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Documentary on the Friedmans, a seemingly typical, upper-middle-class Jewish family whose world is instantly transformed when the father and his youngest son are arrested and charged with shocking and horrible crimes. (107 mins.)
Director: Andrew Jarecki
 
18.
Grey Gardens (1975 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
An old mother and her middle-aged daughter, the aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, live their eccentric lives in a filthy, decaying mansion in East Hampton. (94 mins.)
 
19.
Hands on a Hard Body: The Documentary (1997 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Twenty-four contestants compete in an endurance/sleep deprivation contest in order to win a brand new Nissan Hardbody truck... (98 mins.)
Director: S.R. Bindler
 
20.
Last Train Home (2009 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A couple embarks on a journey home for Chinese new year along with 130 million other migrant workers, to reunite with their children and struggle for a future. Their unseen story plays out as China soars towards being a world superpower. (85 mins.)
Director: Lixin Fan
 
21.
Hell House (2001 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
A look at the "Hell House" performed annually in October by the youth members of Trinity Church (Assemblies of God) in Cedar Hill... (85 mins.)
Director: George Ratliff
 
22.
Room 237 (2012 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
An exploration of various interpretations of Stanley Kubrick's horror film, The Shining. (102 mins.)
Director: Rodney Ascher
 
23.
Side by Side (2012 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
The documentary investigates the history, process and workflow of both digital and photochemical film creation. (99 mins.)
Director: Chris Kenneally
 
24.
F for Fake (1973 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A documentary about fraud and fakery. (89 mins.)
Director: Orson Welles
 
25.
Darwin's Nightmare (2004 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A documentary on the effect of fishing the Nile perch in Tanzania's Lake Victoria. The predatory fish, which has wiped out the native species, is sold in European supermarkets, while starving Tanzanian families have to make do with the leftovers. (107 mins.)
Director: Hubert Sauper
 
26.
A Film Unfinished (2010 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A film about an unfinished film which portrays the people behind and before the camera in the Warsaw Ghetto, exposing the extent of the cinematic manipulation forever changing the way we look at historic images. (88 mins.)
Director: Yael Hersonski
 
27.
The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceausescu (2010 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
The film explores the image of the Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu using unknown official footage from the Romanian National Television and National Film Archives. (180 mins.)
Director: Andrei Ujica
 
28.
Hospital (1970 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
Daily activities of the Metropolitan Hospital in New York City, with emphasis on the emergency ward and outpatient clinics... (84 mins.)
 
29.
Aspen (1991 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
(146 mins.)
 
30.
Titicut Follies (1967 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Documentary filmmaker Frederick Wiseman takes us inside the Massachusetts Correctional Institution Bridgewater where people stay trapped in their madness. (84 mins.)
 
31.
High School (1968 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
Documentary filmmaker Frederick Wiseman takes us inside Northeast High School as a fly on the wall to observe the teachers and how they interact with the students. (75 mins.)
 
32.
Law and Order (1969 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
(81 mins.)
 
33.
Juvenile Court (1973 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
An unobtrusive and naturalistic examination of the goings-on of a children's court, Memphis Juvenile Court 616. (144 mins.)
 
34.
Essene (1972 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
(86 mins.)
 
35.
The Store (1983 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A look at the employees and shoppers at the Neiman-Marcus department in Dallas, Texas during the holiday season. (118 mins.)
 
36.
Domestic Violence (2001 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Renowned documentarian Frederick Wiseman turns his observational camera on The Spring, a Florida shelter for battered women and children... (196 mins.)
 
37.
Domestic Violence 2 (2002 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
The opening scene in this film is of an arrest in Hillsborough County Florida where a woman has scratched... (196 mins.)
 
38.
All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace (2011 Mini-Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
A series of films about how humans have been colonized by the machines we have built. Although we don't realize it, the way we see everything in the world today is through the eyes of the computers. (60 mins.)
 
39.
The Queen of Versailles (2012 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A documentary that follows a billionaire couple as they begin construction on a mansion inspired by Versailles. During the next two years, their empire, fueled by the real estate bubble and cheap money, falters due to the economic crisis. (100 mins.)