Documentaries on Race and Ethnicity

by MrKaya | created - 08 Jan 2015 | updated - 5 months ago | Public

Documentaries on ethnicity, minorities, immigration, and other realms of race relations or identity.

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1. We Were Children (2012)

88 min | Drama

For over 130 years till 1996, more than 100,000 of Canada's First Nations children were legally required to attend government-funded schools run by various Christian faiths. There were 80 ... See full summary »

Director: Tim Wolochatiuk | Stars: Rene Batson, Taya Ayotte Bourns, Alice Dano, Justin Ducharme

Votes: 221

3. Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People (2006 Video)

50 min | Documentary, History, War

This groundbreaking documentary dissects a slanderous aspect of cinematic history that has run virtually unchallenged form the earliest days of silent film to today's biggest Hollywood ... See full summary »

Directors: Jeremy Earp, Sut Jhally | Stars: Bo Derek, Ana Obregón, Jack Shaheen

Votes: 507

4. Those Who Remain (2008)

96 min | Documentary

An intimate and discerning depiction of the impact of migration on families and villages left behind by loved ones who have traveled North for work.

Directors: Carlos Hagerman, Juan Carlos Rulfo | Stars: Julio Cesar Castillo, Luis Castillo, Maricela Dzul, Adrian Esparza

Votes: 90

5. The Naturalized (2010)


Weaving together the lives of different people from different countries who all share a quest for citizenship by choice, not birthright, this documentary travels from a citizenship class in... See full summary »

Director: Aaron Lubarsky | Stars: Isabel Allende, Charo, Muzaffar Chishti, Alan Cumming

Votes: 11

6. Rebuilding Hope (2009)

78 min | Documentary, War

Three 'Lost Boys' return home to South Sudan for the first time since they fled as small children, twenty years ago. 'Rebuilding Hope' is their journey of discovery; of what happened to ... See full summary »

Director: Jen Marlowe | Stars: Gabriel Bol Deng, Koor Garang, Garang Mayuol

Votes: 5

7. Living Like a Common Man (2011 Video)

65 min | Documentary, Biography

Youngsters in developing countries all over the world dream of going to the West. They hope to earn money and get overseas experience to improve their positions at home. But once they ... See full summary »

Directors: Isabelle Makay, Mario Rutten, Sanderien Verstappen

8. Immigrant Nation!: The Battle for the Dream (2010)

96 min | Documentary, Biography, Drama

Immigrant Nation is the story of the modern immigrant rights movement and the struggle of single mother, Elvira Arellano, who fought against her deportation. It tells how organizations, ... See full summary »

Director: Esau Melendez

9. Farmingville (2004)

79 min | Documentary

62 Metascore

Documentary on the attempted murder of two Mexican day laborers in Farmingville, New York.

Directors: Carlos Sandoval, Catherine Tambini

Votes: 208

10. AbUSed: The Postville Raid (2011)

96 min | Documentary, History, News

It is at once an epic story of survival, hope, and humble aspirations, of triumph, defeat, and rebirth. The face of immigration is revealed through the gripping personal stories of the ... See full summary »

Director: Luis Argueta

Votes: 19

11. Which Way Home (2009)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary

"Which Way Home" is a feature documentary film that follows unaccompanied child migrants, on their journey through Mexico, as they try to reach the United States. We follow children like ... See full summary »

Director: Rebecca Cammisa

Votes: 1,004

12. I for India (2005)

70 min | Documentary

The myth of return. In 1966, Yash and Sheel Suri leave India for a temporary stay in England while he burnishes his resume as a doctor. He buys projectors, tape recorders, and movie cameras... See full summary »

Director: Sandhya Suri | Star: Yash Pal Suri

Votes: 171

13. Promises (2001)

106 min | Documentary

80 Metascore

Several Jewish and Palestinian children are followed for three years and put in touch with each other, in this alternative look at the Jewish-Palestinian conflict. The three filmmakers ... See full summary »

Directors: B.Z. Goldberg, Justine Shapiro, Carlos Bolado | Stars: Moishe Bar Am, B.Z. Goldberg, Shlomo Green, Sanabel Hassan

Votes: 2,493 | Gross: $0.24M

14. Erasing Hate (2011 TV Movie)

TV-MA | 45 min | Documentary

In this hour, MSNBC goes inside the world of Bryon Widner, a former skinhead "pit bull", as he undergoes painful treatments to remove the physical representation of the hate he had exhibited to the world for more than half his life.

Director: Bill Brummel | Stars: Bryon Widner, Julie Widner, Brooke Beck, Andrew Micheal Carter

Votes: 391

15. Lost Boys of Sudan (2003)

Unrated | 87 min | Documentary

78 Metascore

Lost Boys of Sudan is a feature-length documentary that follows two Sudanese refugees on an extraordinary journey from Africa to America. Orphaned as young boys in one of Africa's cruelest ... See full summary »

Directors: Megan Mylan, Jon Shenk | Stars: Santino Majok Chuor, Jarrid Geduld, Peter Kon Dut

Votes: 553 | Gross: $0.12M

16. Without Shepherds (2013)

Not Rated | 89 min | Documentary

Six bold people navigate the dangerous waters of Pakistan's current crisis to discover a new tomorrow: a cricket star starts a progressive political party, a female journalist goes behind ... See full summary »

Directors: Cary McClelland, Imran Babur | Stars: Vaneeza Ahmad, Arieb Azhar, Abdullah Khan, Imran Khan

Votes: 64

17. The Muslims Are Coming! (2013)

Not Rated | 81 min | Documentary, Comedy

48 Metascore

Comedians Negin Farsad and Dean Obeidallah lead an all-star Muslim comedy performing in big cities, small towns, liberal enclaves, conservative hotbeds, rural and everything in between to ... See full summary »

Directors: Negin Farsad, Dean Obeidallah | Stars: Lewis Black, Scott Blakeman, David Cross, Omar Elba

Votes: 299

18. On the Way to School (2008)

81 min | Documentary, Drama

One year in the life of a Turkish teacher, teaching the Turkish language to Kurdish children in a remote village in Turkey. The children can't speak Turkish, the teacher can't speak Kurdish... See full summary »

Directors: Özgür Dogan, Orhan Eskiköy | Stars: Emre Aydin, Rojda Huz, Vehip Huz, Zulkuf Huz

Votes: 1,959

19. Slavery and the Making of America (2005)

TV-PG | 240 min | History

A documentary of the history of American slavery from its beginnings in the British colonies through the years of post-Civil War Reconstruction, this series examines the integral role ... See full summary »

Stars: Morgan Freeman, Jordan Brown, Chauncey Herring, Justin Jackson

Votes: 93

20. Documented (2013)

89 min | Documentary, Biography, Family

61 Metascore

In 2011, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas outed himself as an undocumented immigrant in the New York Times Magazine. 'Documented' chronicles his journey to America from... See full summary »

Directors: Jose Antonio Vargas, Ann Lupo | Stars: Emelie Salinas, Leonila Salinas, Jose Antonio Vargas

Votes: 130 | Gross: $0.01M

21. Frontline (1983– )
Episode: Separate and Unequal/Omarina's Story (2014)

TV-PG | 54 min | Documentary

From PBS and FRONTLINE: Sixty years after the Supreme Court declared separate schools for black and white children unconstitutional, FRONTLINE examines the comeback of segregation in ... See full summary »

Director: Mary Robertson | Stars: Will Lyman, Nikki Dangerfield, Caleb Dangerfield, Lionel Rainey

Votes: 19

22. The Loving Story (2011)

Not Rated | 77 min | Documentary, Drama, History

A racially-charged criminal trial and a heart-rending love story converge in this documentary about Richard and Mildred Loving, set during the turbulent Civil Rights era. Long Way Home: The... See full summary »

Director: Nancy Buirski | Stars: Jane Alexander, Lindsay Almond Jr., Edward L. Ayers, Leon M. Bazile

Votes: 647

23. The Trials of Muhammad Ali (2013)

Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary, Biography, Sport

74 Metascore

The legal battles of the great American boxer against being conscripted into the US military during the Vietnam War.

Director: Bill Siegel | Stars: Eamonn Andrews, Muhammad Ali, David Susskind, George W. Bush

Votes: 957 | Gross: $0.06M

24. The Act of Killing (2012)

Not Rated | 117 min | Documentary, Crime

90 Metascore

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.

Directors: Joshua Oppenheimer, Anonymous, Christine Cynn | Stars: Anwar Congo, Herman Koto, Syamsul Arifin, Ibrahim Sinik

Votes: 30,487 | Gross: $0.49M

25. Reel Injun (2009)

Not Rated | 85 min | Documentary, Western

63 Metascore

The history of the depiction of Native Americans in Hollywood films.

Directors: Neil Diamond, Catherine Bainbridge, Jeremiah Hayes | Stars: Adam Beach, Chris Eyre, Russell Means, John Trudell

Votes: 1,228

26. Welcome to Leith (2015)

Not Rated | 85 min | Documentary

78 Metascore

When a noted white supremacist moves into their town, the residents of Leith, North Dakota do what they can to prevent him from taking control of the municipality.

Directors: Michael Beach Nichols, Christopher K. Walker | Stars: Craig Cobb, Ryan Lenz, Amber Schatz

Votes: 3,405 | Gross: $0.04M

27. Salam Neighbor (2015)

Not Rated | 75 min | Documentary, Adventure, Drama

Two filmmakers fully embed themselves in a Syrian refugee camp, providing an intimate look at the world's most dire humanitarian crisis.

Directors: Zach Ingrasci, Chris Temple | Stars: Zach Ingrasci, Chris Temple

Votes: 540

28. 13th (2016)

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

90 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: 18,693

29. Sex: My British Job (2013)

Not Rated | 63 min | Documentary

Nick Broomfield met Hsiao Hung Pai, a journalist who was working for the Guardian, when making his feature film 'Ghosts' (about the Morecambe Bay Chinese Cockle Pickers ). As an experiment ... See full summary »

Director: Nick Broomfield | Stars: Nick Broomfield, Hsiao-Hung Pai

Votes: 394

30. Meet the Patels (2014)

PG | 88 min | Documentary, Comedy, Romance

70 Metascore

An Indian-American man who is about to turn 30 gets help from his parents and extended family to start looking for a wife in the traditional Indian way.

Directors: Geeta Patel, Ravi Patel | Stars: Ravi Patel, Geeta Patel, Champa V. Patel, Vasant K. Patel

Votes: 2,808 | Gross: $1.69M

31. For Love of Liberty: The Story of America's Black Patriots (2010 TV Movie)

Not Rated | 115 min | Documentary

A two-part, four-hour documentary series honoring African-American servicemen and women.

Director: Frank Martin | Stars: Halle Berry, Avery Brooks, Colin Powell, John Amos

Votes: 81

32. Der NSU-Komplex (2016 TV Movie)

54 min | Documentary

An underground neo-nazi organisation evades law enforcement whilst performing horrific acts of crime and violence. But for how long?

Directors: Stefan Aust, Dirk Laabs | Star: T.M. Garret

Votes: 182

33. Hitler: A career (1977)

Not Rated | 150 min | Documentary, History

This meticulously assembled film dissects the Third Reich with an analytical blade, charting Hitler's improbable rise, his mastery of crowd psychology and his consummate skill in exploiting others' weaknesses.

Directors: Joachim Fest, Christian Herrendoerfer | Stars: Gert Westphal, Stephen Murray, Artur Axmann, General Bergeret

Votes: 1,158

34. Accidental Courtesy: Daryl Davis, Race & America (2016)

96 min | Documentary, Biography, History

63 Metascore

Daryl Davis is an accomplished musician who was played all over the world. He also has an unusual hobby, particularly for a middle aged black man. When not displaying his musical chops, ... See full summary »

Director: Matthew Ornstein | Stars: Daryl D. Davis, Kenneth Nwadike, Michael Wood Jr.

Votes: 895 | Gross: $0.00M

35. Clínica de Migrantes: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness (2016)

Not Rated | 39 min | Documentary, Short

An unprecedented look into the workings of one of the only health clinics that serves America's untouchable class: undocumented immigrants.

Director: Maxim Pozdorovkin

Votes: 52

36. Les Bleus une autre histoire de France (2016 TV Movie)

104 min | Documentary, History, Sport

This documentary follows the French national team for 20 years, from 1996 to 2016. Successes and setbacks that mirrored the French Society.

Directors: David Dietz, Sonia Dauger, Pascal Blanchard

Votes: 649

37. Oklahoma City (2017)

Not Rated | 102 min | Documentary, Crime, History

74 Metascore

The bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City in April 1995 is the worst act of domestic terrorism in American history; this documentary explores how a series of ... See full summary »

Director: Barak Goodman | Stars: Janet Beck, Alan Berg, Jim Botting, Bill Buford

Votes: 2,019

38. The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution (2015)

Not Rated | 115 min | Documentary

79 Metascore

This documentary tells the rise and fall of the Black Panther Party, one of the 20th century's most alluring and controversial organizations that captivated the world's attention for nearly 50 years.

Director: Stanley Nelson | Stars: Angela Arnold, Erica Ball, Rhon G. Flatts, Eric Lockley

Votes: 1,419 | Gross: $0.48M

39. Maya Angelou and Still I Rise (2016)

Not Rated | 114 min | Documentary, Biography, History

66 Metascore

The first feature documentary about the remarkable writer, poet, actress, activist Maya Angelou.

Directors: Bob Hercules, Rita Coburn Whack | Stars: Cicely Tyson, Guy Johnson, Diahann Carroll, Don Martin

Votes: 358

40. The Civil War (1990)

TV-14 | 680 min | Documentary, History, War

A comprehensive survey of the American Civil War.

Stars: David McCullough, Sam Waterston, Julie Harris, Jason Robards

Votes: 10,308

41. Forever Pure (2016)

85 min | Documentary

One season and one football team in crisis, as power, money and politics fuel a club spiralling out of control.

Director: Maya Zinshtein | Stars: Eli Cohen, Arcadi Gaydamak, Ariel Harush, Dzhabrail Kadiyev

Votes: 623

42. Dough (2015)

Not Rated | 94 min | Comedy, Drama

44 Metascore

An old Jewish baker struggles to keep his business afloat until his young Muslim apprentice drops cannabis in the dough and sends sales sky high.

Director: John Goldschmidt | Stars: Jonathan Pryce, Jerome Holder, Phil Davis, Ian Hart

Votes: 1,460 | Gross: $1.14M

43. Disturbing the Peace (2016)

Not Rated | 87 min | Documentary

81 Metascore

In a world torn by conflict -in a place where the idea of peace has been abandoned-an energy of determined optimism emerges. When someone is willing to disturb the status quo and stand for ... See full summary »

Directors: Stephen Apkon, Andrew Young

Votes: 186 | Gross: $0.02M

44. Awake, a Dream from Standing Rock (2017)

89 min | Documentary

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota captures world attention through their peaceful resistance against the U.S. government's plan to construct an oil pipeline through their land.

Directors: Myron Dewey, Josh Fox, James Spione | Star: Autumn DePoe-Hughes

Votes: 165

45. Farid in the West (2013)

10 min | Short, Comedy, Drama

When two middle-eastern migrants face the pressures of a new culture, they turn to the niqab/burqua in very different ways.

Director: Steve Anthopoulos | Stars: Mairead Armstrong, Michelle Cameron, Cynthia Gordon, Bev Killick

Votes: 14

46. Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992 (2017)

TV-MA | 144 min | Documentary

92 Metascore

An in-depth look at the culture of Los Angeles in the ten years leading up to the 1992 uprising that erupted after the verdict of police officers cleared of beating Rodney King.

Director: John Ridley | Stars: Tim Goldman, Damian 'Football' Williams, Henry Keith Watson, Jung Lee

Votes: 393

47. East Jerusalem/West Jerusalem (2014)

Not Rated | 80 min | Documentary, Music

In Palestinian East Jerusalem, Singer-Songwriter David Broza records a new album with American, Palestinian and Israeli musicians in defiance of the Middle East's dark realities.

Directors: Henrique Cymerman, Erez Miller | Stars: Fadi Awad, Mira Awad, David Broza, Steve Earle

Votes: 50

48. Human Flow (2017)

PG-13 | 140 min | Documentary

77 Metascore

Human Flow is director and artist Ai Weiwei's detailed and heartbreaking exploration into the global refugee crisis.

Director: Weiwei Ai | Stars: Israa Abboud, Hiba Abed, Rami Abu Sondos, Weiwei Ai

Votes: 1,870 | Gross: $0.53M