Best documentaries & rockumentaries I've seen since Jan 2011

by neilmitchell | created - 15 Jun 2011 | updated - 07 Dec 2015 | Public
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1. Citizenfour (2014)

R | 114 min | Documentary, Biography

88 Metascore

A documentarian and a reporter travel to Hong Kong for the first of many meetings with Edward Snowden.

Director: Laura Poitras | Stars: Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald, William Binney, Jacob Appelbaum

Votes: 45,655 | Gross: $2.80M

2. Virunga (2014)

Not Rated | 100 min | Documentary, War

95 Metascore

A team of brave individuals risk their lives to protect the last mountain gorillas.

Director: Orlando von Einsiedel | Stars: André Bauma, Emmanuel de Merode, Mélanie Gouby, Rodrigue Mugaruka Katembo

Votes: 8,304

3. You've Been Trumped (2011)

Not Rated | 79 min | Documentary

57 Metascore

In this David and Goliath story for the 21st century, a group of proud Scottish homeowners take on celebrity tycoon Donald J. Trump as he buys up one of Scotland's last wilderness areas to build a golf resort.

Director: Anthony Baxter | Stars: Michael Forbes, Donald J. Trump, Anthony Baxter, Kevin Brown

Votes: 2,010 | Gross: $0.03M

4. Blackfish (2013)

PG-13 | 83 min | Documentary, Drama

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: 53,439 | Gross: $2.06M

5. The Cove (2009)

PG-13 | 92 min | Documentary, Crime

84 Metascore

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.

Director: Louie Psihoyos | Stars: Richard O'Barry, Louie Psihoyos, Hardy Jones, Michael Illiff

Votes: 43,735 | Gross: $0.86M

6. GasLand (2010)

Not Rated | 107 min | Documentary

An exploration of the fracking petroleum extraction industry and the serious environmental consequences involved.

Director: Josh Fox | Stars: Josh Fox, Dick Cheney, Pete Seeger, Richard Nixon

Votes: 9,819 | Gross: $0.03M

7. Winter on Fire: Ukraine's Fight for Freedom (2015)

Not Rated | 102 min | Documentary

79 Metascore

A documentary on the unrest in Ukraine during 2013 and 2014, as student demonstrations supporting European integration grew into a violent revolution calling for the resignation of President Viktor F. Yanukovich.

Director: Evgeny Afineevsky | Stars: Bishop Agapit, Catherine Ashton, Serhii Averchenko, Kristina Berdinskikh

Votes: 9,668

8. Food, Inc. (2008)

PG | 94 min | Documentary

80 Metascore

An unflattering look inside America's corporate controlled food industry.

Director: Robert Kenner | Stars: Michael Pollan, Eric Schlosser, Richard Lobb, Vince Edwards

Votes: 46,512 | Gross: $4.42M

9. Narco Cultura (2013)

R | 103 min | Documentary

74 Metascore

To a growing number of Mexicans and Latinos in the Americas, narco traffickers have become iconic outlaws and the new models of fame and success. They represent a pathway out of the ghetto ... See full summary »

Director: Shaul Schwarz

Votes: 2,249 | Gross: $0.14M

10. TPB AFK: The Pirate Bay Away from Keyboard (2013)

Not Rated | 85 min | Documentary

An intellectual freedoms documentary based around the interpersonal triumphs, and defeats of the three main characters against the largest industry in the known universe. The media industry.

Director: Simon Klose | Stars: Gottfrid Svartholm, Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij, Peter Althin

Votes: 12,791

11. We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists (2012)

Not Rated | 93 min | Documentary

66 Metascore

A documentary on the workings and beliefs of the self-described "hacktivist" collective, Anonymous.

Director: Brian Knappenberger | Stars: Anon2World, Anonyops, Julian Assange, Aaron Barr

Votes: 9,012

12. Dive! (2010)

TV-G | 45 min | Documentary, Family

Follow filmmaker Jeremy Seifert and his circle of friends as they dumpster dive in the back alleys and gated garbage receptacles of L.A.'s supermarkets. In the process they uncover ... See full summary »

Director: Jeremy Seifert | Star: Jeremy Seifert

Votes: 272

13. Outback Fight Club (2011)

60 min | Documentary

Features the final tour of the world's last remaining tent-boxing troupe. An important chapter in Australia's rural history is about to end with a bang.

Star: Aaron Pedersen

Votes: 13

14. Senna (2010)

PG-13 | 106 min | Documentary, Biography, Sport

79 Metascore

A documentary on Brazilian Formula One racing driver Ayrton Senna, who won the F1 world championship three times before his death at age 34.

Director: Asif Kapadia | Stars: Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost, Frank Williams, Ron Dennis

Votes: 51,446 | Gross: $1.61M

15. Cartel Land (2015)

R | 100 min | Documentary

76 Metascore

Filmmaker Matthew Heineman examines the state of the ongoing drug problem along the U.S.-Mexican border.

Director: Matthew Heineman | Stars: Tim Nailer Foley, José Manuel 'El Doctor' Mireles, Paco Valencia, Chaneque

Votes: 15,630 | Gross: $0.70M

16. Religulous (2008)

R | 101 min | Documentary, Comedy, War

56 Metascore

Bill Maher's take on the current state of world religion.

Director: Larry Charles | Stars: Bill Maher, Tal Bachman, Jonathan Boulden, Steve Burg

Votes: 55,035 | Gross: $13.00M

17. Indie Game: The Movie (2012)

Not Rated | 94 min | Documentary, Drama

73 Metascore

A documentary that follows the journeys of indie game developers as they create games and release those works, and themselves, to the world.

Directors: Lisanne Pajot, James Swirsky | Stars: Jonathan Blow, Brandon Boyer, Renaud Bédard, Anthony Carboni

Votes: 19,002

18. Sound City (2013)

Not Rated | 107 min | Documentary, Music

76 Metascore

A documentary on the fabled recording studio that was located in Van Nuys, California.

Director: Dave Grohl | Stars: Trent Reznor, Tom Petty, Mick Fleetwood, Vinny Appice

Votes: 11,028 | Gross: $0.42M

19. As the Palaces Burn (2014)

121 min | Documentary, Music

80 Metascore

Documentary that follows metal fans in different countries set against Lamb of God's 2012 world tour.

Director: Don Argott | Stars: Chris Adler, Willy Adler, Randy Blythe, Dave Brockie

Votes: 599

20. West of Memphis (2012)

R | 147 min | Documentary, Crime

80 Metascore

An examination of a failure of justice in the case against the West Memphis Three.

Director: Amy Berg | Stars: Jason Baldwin, Damien Wayne Echols, Jessie Misskelley, Michael Baden

Votes: 8,718 | Gross: $0.31M

21. Loose Change 9/11: An American Coup (2009 Video)

Unrated | 99 min | Documentary, History, War

Film in the Loose Change series.

Director: Dylan Avery | Stars: Osama bin Laden, Johnelle Bryant, George W. Bush, Laura Bush

Votes: 3,172

22. Buena Vista Social Club (1999)

G | 105 min | Documentary, Music

81 Metascore

Aging Cuban musicians whose talents had been virtually forgotten following Castro's takeover of Cuba, are brought out of retirement by Ry Cooder, who travelled to Havana in order to bring the musicians together, resulting in triumphant performances of extraordinary music, and resurrecting the musicians' careers.

Director: Wim Wenders | Stars: Compay Segundo, Ibrahim Ferrer, Rubén González, Eliades Ochoa

Votes: 14,706 | Gross: $7.00M

23. TT3D: Closer to the Edge (2011)

Not Rated | 104 min | Documentary, Sport

By vividly recounting the TT's legendary rivalries and the Isle of Man's unique road racing history, this 3D feature documentary will discover why modern TT riders still risk their lives to... See full summary »

Director: Richard De Aragues | Stars: Guy Martin, Ian Hutchinson, John McGuinness, Michael Dunlop

Votes: 5,722

24. Inside Job (2010)

PG-13 | 105 min | Documentary, Crime

88 Metascore

Takes a closer look at what brought about the 2008 financial meltdown.

Director: Charles Ferguson | Stars: Matt Damon, Gylfi Zoega, Andri Snær Magnason, Sigridur Benediktsdottir

Votes: 62,881 | Gross: $4.31M

25. The Filth and the Fury (2000)

R | 108 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

82 Metascore

A film about the career of the notorious punk rock band, the Sex Pistols.

Director: Julien Temple | Stars: Paul Cook, Steve Jones, John Lydon, Glen Matlock

Votes: 5,190 | Gross: $0.61M

26. Pearl Jam Twenty (2011)

Not Rated | 109 min | Documentary, History, Music

59 Metascore

A documentary on the band Pearl Jam that marks their 20th anniversary in the year 2011.

Director: Cameron Crowe | Stars: Eddie Vedder, Stone Gossard, Jeff Ament, Cameron Crowe

Votes: 7,099 | Gross: $0.45M

27. Foo Fighters: Back and Forth (2011)

Not Rated | 101 min | Documentary, Music

Rising from the ashes of Nirvana, the Foo Fighters became a Grammy-winning sensation on their own. Sixteen years of the band's history comes to life in this documentary, from their demo ... See full summary »

Director: James Moll | Stars: Shawn Cloninger, William Goldsmith, Jessy Greene, Dave Grohl

Votes: 4,974

28. Lemmy (2010)

116 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

64 Metascore

A documentary on the life and career of revered heavy-metal musician Lemmy Kilmister.

Directors: Greg Olliver, Wes Orshoski | Stars: Lemmy, Phil Campbell, Mikkey Dee, Dave Navarro

Votes: 6,779

29. The Bitter Buddha (2012)

TV-MA | 90 min | Documentary, Comedy

72 Metascore

FEATURING ZACH GALIFIANAKIS, SARAH SILVERMAN, PATTON OSWALT & MANY MORE! Cult-Comic Eddie Pepitone's life is on display in this unhinged portrait of creativity, enlightenment and rage.

Director: Steven Feinartz | Stars: Eddie Pepitone, Zach Galifianakis, Sarah Silverman, Patton Oswalt

Votes: 219

30. American: The Bill Hicks Story (2009)

Not Rated | 102 min | Documentary, Animation, Biography

55 Metascore

Photo-animated feature documentary, uniquely narrated by the 10 people who knew Bill best.

Directors: Matt Harlock, Paul Thomas | Stars: Bill Hicks, Dwight Slade, Mary Hicks, Steve Hicks

Votes: 4,468 | Gross: $0.09M

31. The Greatest Movie Ever Sold (2011)

PG-13 | 90 min | Documentary, Comedy

66 Metascore

A documentary about branding, advertising and product placement that is financed and made possible by brands, advertising and product placement.

Director: Morgan Spurlock | Stars: J.J. Abrams, Peter Berg, Paul Brennan, Noam Chomsky

Votes: 13,934 | Gross: $0.64M