Documentaries to watch

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1. Taxi to the Dark Side (2007)

R | 106 min | Documentary, Crime, News

82 Metascore

Alex Gibney exposes the haunting details of the USA's torture and interrogation practices during the War in Afghanistan.

Director: Alex Gibney | Stars: Alex Gibney, Brian Keith Allen, Moazzam Begg, Christopher Beiring

Votes: 14,520 | Gross: $0.27M

2. The Act of Killing (2012)

Not Rated | 117 min | Documentary, Biography, Crime

91 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: 33,727 | Gross: $0.49M

3. 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: 50,966 | Gross: $3.17M

4. 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: 59,945 | Gross: $2.07M

5. Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures (2001)

Not Rated | 142 min | Documentary, Biography

The career and life of Stanley Kubrick is explored through pictures, clips from his films, his old home movies, comments from his colleagues and a narration by Tom Cruise.

Director: Jan Harlan | Stars: Katharina Kubrick, Malcolm McDowell, Stanley Kubrick, Barbara Kroner

Votes: 9,716

6. Ingrid Bergman: In Her Own Words (2015)

Not Rated | 114 min | Documentary, Biography

75 Metascore

A captivating look behind the scenes of the remarkable life of a young Swedish girl who became one of the most celebrated actresses of American and World cinema.

Director: Stig Björkman | Stars: Ingrid Bergman, Alicia Vikander, Pia Lindström, Roberto Rossellini

Votes: 1,850 | Gross: $0.14M

7. Stop Making Sense (1984)

Not Rated | 88 min | Documentary, Music

89 Metascore

An innovative concert movie for the rock group The Talking Heads.

Director: Jonathan Demme | Stars: David Byrne, Bernie Worrell, Alex Weir, Steven Scales

Votes: 12,178 | Gross: $5.02M

8. F for Fake (1973)

PG | 89 min | Documentary

A documentary about fraud and fakery.

Directors: Orson Welles, Gary Graver, Oja Kodar, François Reichenbach | Stars: Orson Welles, Oja Kodar, François Reichenbach, Elmyr de Hory

Votes: 14,178

9. The Salt of the Earth (2014)

PG-13 | 110 min | Documentary, Biography, History

83 Metascore

The life and work of photographer Sebastião Salgado, who has spent forty years documenting deprived societies in hidden corners of the world.

Directors: Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, Wim Wenders | Stars: Sebastião Salgado, Wim Wenders, Lélia Wanick Salgado, Juliano Ribeiro Salgado

Votes: 18,789 | Gross: $1.34M

10. Shoah (1985)

Not Rated | 566 min | Documentary, History, War

99 Metascore

Claude Lanzmann's epic documentary recounts the story of the Holocaust through interviews with witnesses - perpetrators as well as survivors.

Director: Claude Lanzmann | Stars: Simon Srebnik, Michael Podchlebnik, Motke Zaïdl, Hanna Zaïdl

Votes: 8,130 | Gross: $0.02M

11. Touching the Void (2003)

R | 106 min | Documentary, Adventure, Drama

82 Metascore

The true story of two climbers and their perilous journey up the west face of Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes in 1985.

Director: Kevin Macdonald | Stars: Simon Yates, Joe Simpson, Brendan Mackey, Nicholas Aaron

Votes: 32,703 | Gross: $4.59M

12. In the Shadow of the Moon (2007)

PG | 100 min | Documentary, History

84 Metascore

The crew members of NASA's Apollo missions tell their story in their own words.

Director: David Sington | Stars: Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong, Stephen Armstrong, Viola Armstrong

Votes: 6,456 | Gross: $1.13M

13. Crumb (1994)

R | 119 min | Documentary, Biography, Comedy

93 Metascore

An intimate portrait of controversial cartoonist Robert Crumb and his traumatized family.

Director: Terry Zwigoff | Stars: Robert Crumb, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, Charles Crumb, Maxon Crumb

Votes: 17,887 | Gross: $3.17M

14. Marwencol (2010)

Not Rated | 83 min | Documentary, Biography, Fantasy

82 Metascore

After a vicious attack leaves him brain-damaged and broke, Mark Hogancamp seeks recovery in "Marwencol", a 1/6th scale World War II-era town he creates in his backyard.

Director: Jeff Malmberg | Stars: Mark Hogancamp, Emmanuel Nneji, Edda Hogancamp, Tom Neubauer

Votes: 3,346 | Gross: $0.11M

15. Faces Places (2017)

PG | 94 min | Documentary

94 Metascore

Director Agnes Varda and photographer/muralist J.R. journey through rural France and form an unlikely friendship.

Directors: JR, Agnès Varda | Stars: Agnès Varda, JR, Jeannine Carpentier, Clemens Van Dungern

Votes: 9,943 | Gross: $0.95M

16. Wild Man Blues (1997)

PG | 105 min | Documentary, Music, Romance

Academy Award-winner Barbara Kopple directs this documentary portrait of Academy Award and Golden Globe-winner Woody Allen, seen traveling with friends and fellow musicians during their New... See full summary »

Director: Barbara Kopple | Stars: Woody Allen, Letty Aronson, Soon-Yi Previn, Dan Barrett

Votes: 2,112 | Gross: $0.43M

17. Grey Gardens (1975)

PG | 95 min | Documentary, Comedy, Drama

82 Metascore

An old mother and her middle-aged daughter, the aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy, live their eccentric lives in a filthy, decaying mansion in East Hampton.

Directors: Ellen Hovde, Albert Maysles, David Maysles, Muffie Meyer | Stars: Edith Bouvier Beale, Edith 'Little Edie' Bouvier Beale, Brooks Hyers

Votes: 11,606 | Gross: $0.03M

18. Apollo 11 (2019)

G | 93 min | Documentary, History

88 Metascore

A look at the Apollo 11 mission to land on the moon led by commander Neil Armstrong and pilots Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins.

Director: Todd Douglas Miller | Stars: Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, Buzz Aldrin, Deke Slayton

Votes: 18,406 | Gross: $9.04M

19. 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, Octavio Calderon

Votes: 16,087 | Gross: $7.00M

20. Winged Migration (2001)

G | 89 min | Documentary

82 Metascore

Documentary on the migratory patterns of birds, shot over the course of three years on all seven continents.

Directors: Jacques Perrin, Jacques Cluzaud, Michel Debats | Stars: Jacques Perrin, Philippe Labro

Votes: 11,372 | Gross: $10.76M

21. 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: 12,710

22. Baseball (1994–2010)

TV-PG | 1,140 min | Documentary, History, Sport

A documentary on the history of the sport with major topics including Afro-American players, player/team owner relations and the resilience of the game.

Stars: John Chancellor, Daniel Okrent, Ossie Davis, Paul Roebling

Votes: 3,604

23. The Last Days (1998)

PG-13 | 87 min | Documentary, War

In late 1944, even as they faced imminent defeat, the Nazis expended enormous resources to kill or deport over 425,000 Jews during the "cleansing" of Hungary. This Oscar-winning documentary... See full summary »

Director: James Moll | Stars: Bill Basch, Martin Basch, Randolph Braham, Alice Lok Cahana

Votes: 1,802 | Gross: $0.42M

24. The Champions (2015)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary, News

All odds were stacked against the pit-bulls rescued from quarterback Michael Vick's dogfighting ring. Forced to fight for their lives, they were considered so dangerous many wanted them ... See full summary »

Director: Darcy Dennett | Star: John Garcia

Votes: 458

25. More Than Honey (2012)

Unrated | 95 min | Documentary

70 Metascore

An in-depth look at honeybee colonies in California, Switzerland, China and Australia.

Director: Markus Imhoof | Stars: Fred Jaggi, Randolf Menzel, John Miller, Liane Singer

Votes: 3,911 | Gross: $0.07M

26. Cave of Forgotten Dreams (2010)

G | 90 min | Documentary, History

86 Metascore

Werner Herzog gains exclusive access to film inside the Chauvet caves of Southern France and captures the oldest known pictorial creations of humanity.

Director: Werner Herzog | Stars: Werner Herzog, Jean Clottes, Julien Monney, Jean-Michel Geneste

Votes: 14,698 | Gross: $5.23M

27. Encounters at the End of the World (2007)

G | 99 min | Documentary

80 Metascore

Film-maker Werner Herzog travels to the McMurdo Station in Antarctica, looking to capture the continent's beauty and investigate the characters living there.

Director: Werner Herzog | Stars: Werner Herzog, Scott Rowland, Stefan Pashov, Doug MacAyeal

Votes: 16,749 | Gross: $0.94M

28. Room 237 (I) (2012)

Not Rated | 102 min | Documentary

80 Metascore

An exploration of various interpretations of Stanley Kubrick's horror film, The Shining (1980).

Director: Rodney Ascher | Stars: Bill Blakemore, Geoffrey Cocks, Juli Kearns, John Fell Ryan

Votes: 20,480 | Gross: $0.26M

29. They Shall Not Grow Old (II) (2018)

R | 99 min | Documentary, History, War

91 Metascore

A documentary about World War I with never-before-seen footage to commemorate the centennial of the end of the war.

Director: Peter Jackson

Votes: 25,253 | Gross: $17.96M

30. Hot Girls Wanted (2015)

84 min | Documentary

A documentary about young women who have been drawn into the sex trade - and how easy it is for a web-savvy generation to end up making porn.

Directors: Jill Bauer, Ronna Gradus | Stars: Farrah Laurel Abraham, John Anthony, Rachel Bernard, Carrie Brooks

Votes: 15,038

31. The Bad Kids (2016)

101 min | Documentary

75 Metascore

A group of teachers at a Mojave Desert high school take an unconventional approach to improve the lives of their struggling students.

Directors: Keith Fulton, Louis Pepe | Stars: Vonda Viland, Julia Alexander, Laura Ambrosius, Robert Bartz

Votes: 573 | Gross: $0.00M

32. For Sama (2019)

TV-PG | 100 min | Documentary, War

89 Metascore

FOR SAMA is both an intimate and epic journey into the female experience of war.

Directors: Waad Al-Kateab, Edward Watts | Stars: Waad Al-Kateab, Hamza Al-Khateab, Sama Al-Khateab

Votes: 6,356 | Gross: $0.03M

33. Samsara (I) (2011)

PG-13 | 102 min | Documentary, Music

65 Metascore

Filmed over nearly five years in twenty-five countries on five continents, and shot on seventy-millimetre film, Samsara transports us to the varied worlds of sacred grounds, disaster zones, industrial complexes, and natural wonders.

Director: Ron Fricke | Stars: Balinese Tari Legong Dancers, Ni Made Megahadi Pratiwi, Puti Sri Candra Dewi, Putu Dinda Pratika

Votes: 31,909 | Gross: $2.67M

34. Ashes and Snow (2005)

62 min | Documentary, Drama

Exploring the shared language and poetic sensibilities of all animals.

Director: Gregory Colbert | Stars: Laurence Fishburne, Jeanne Moreau, Enrique Rocha, Ken Watanabe

Votes: 3,857

35. Little Dieter Needs to Fly (1997)

Not Rated | 80 min | Documentary, Biography, Drama

German-American Dieter Dengler discusses his service as a U.S. naval pilot in the Vietnam War. Dengler also revisits the sites of his capture and eventual escape from the hands of the Viet Cong, recreating many events for the camera.

Director: Werner Herzog | Stars: Dieter Dengler, Werner Herzog, Eugene Deatrick

Votes: 5,529

36. Burden of Dreams (1982)

Not Rated | 95 min | Documentary

A documentary on the chaotic production of Werner Herzog's epic Fitzcarraldo (1982), showing how the film managed to get made despite problems that would have floored a less obsessively ... See full summary »

Director: Les Blank | Stars: Werner Herzog, Klaus Kinski, Claudia Cardinale, Jason Robards

Votes: 6,099

37. 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: 705

38. The Look of Silence (2014)

PG-13 | 103 min | Documentary, Biography, History

92 Metascore

A family that survived the genocide in Indonesia confronts the men who killed one of their brothers.

Director: Joshua Oppenheimer | Stars: Adi Rukun, M.Y. Basrun, Amir Hasan, Inong

Votes: 11,215 | Gross: $0.11M

39. Traceroute (2016)

120 min | Documentary, Biography, Comedy

A Personal Journey Into The Uncharted Depths Of Nerd Culture, A Realm Full Of Dangers, Creatures And More Or Less Precarious Working Conditions...

Director: Johannes Grenzfurthner | Stars: Johannes Grenzfurthner, Eddie Codel, Jenny Marx, Johannes Riha

Votes: 1,548

40. Resurrect Dead: The Mystery of the Toynbee Tiles (2011)

Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary

60 Metascore

An urban mystery unfurls as one man pieces together the surreal meaning of hundreds of cryptic tiled messages that have been appearing in city streets across the U.S. and South America.

Director: Jon Foy | Stars: Justin Duerr, Marc Duerr, Kevin Riley, Abby Miller

Votes: 2,048 | Gross: $0.01M

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

PG-13 | 79 min | Documentary, Biography, Sport

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: 34,174 | Gross: $0.68M

42. Steve McQueen: The Man & Le Mans (2015)

TV-MA | 102 min | Documentary

64 Metascore

STEVE MCQUEEN: THE MAN and LE MANS is the story of obsession, betrayal and ultimate vindication. It is the story of how one of the most volatile, charismatic stars of his generation, who ... See full summary »

Directors: Gabriel Clarke, John McKenna | Stars: Sharon Tate, Roman Polanski, Steve McQueen, Chad McQueen

Votes: 1,318 | Gross: $0.00M

43. The Devil and Daniel Johnston (2005)

PG-13 | 110 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

77 Metascore

Daniel Johnston, manic-depressive genius singer/songwriter/artist is revealed in this portrait of madness, creativity and love.

Director: Jeff Feuerzeig | Stars: Daniel Johnston, Mabel Johnston, Bill Johnston, Laurie Allen

Votes: 9,103 | Gross: $0.33M

44. Won't You Be My Neighbor? (2018)

PG-13 | 95 min | Documentary, Biography

85 Metascore

An exploration of the life, lessons, and legacy of iconic children's television host, Fred Rogers.

Director: Morgan Neville | Stars: Fred Rogers, Joanne Rogers, John Rogers, Jim Rogers

Votes: 21,159 | Gross: $22.84M

45. Super Size Me (2004)

PG | 100 min | Documentary

73 Metascore

While examining the influence of the fast food industry, Morgan Spurlock personally explores the consequences on his health of a diet of solely McDonald's food for one month.

Director: Morgan Spurlock | Stars: Morgan Spurlock, Daryl Isaacs, Chemeeka Walker, Dania Abu-Rmaileh

Votes: 99,216 | Gross: $11.53M

46. Behind the White Glasses (2015)

112 min | Documentary, Biography