THE BEST Documentaries

Putt-Putt Perfection

Putt-Putt Perfection

Grantland presents the story of a man who played a perfect game… of minigolf. He pulled it off at a tournament, but still. Part 30 for 30, part The Onion, the documentary is as hilarious as it is sad. Strangely compelling stuff.

Being George Clooney

Being George Clooney

A documentary about audio dubbing Hollywood films for non-English speaking audiences. Featuring interviews and a behind-the-scenes look at the lives of international George Clooneys and other voice actors. Trailer here.

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Steve Nash: The Finish Line Ep.2

Steve Nash: The Finish Line Ep.2

“It’s either back with the Lakers next year or I’m done.” In Grantland’s rare inside look at the troubled times of Steve Nash, the league’s oldest active player receives troubling news, but is determined to fight and hope.

Life After Pi (Full)

Life After Pi (Full)

The full documentary about VFX studio Rhythm & Hues, which won an Oscar for Life of Pi yet went bankrupt because of Hollywood’s unfair business practices. This is just one chapter of a longer documentary called Hollywood Ending.

Trail Therapy

Trail Therapy

In 1999, after his son committed suicide, Steve Fugate left his successful businesses and started walking across the United States. He’s doing it to remind other people and himself not to lose hope. Steve has walked over 34,000mi and counting.

Steve Nash: The Finish Line

Steve Nash: The Finish Line

The first episode of Grantland’s documentary series on NBA player Steve Nash. Now at the twilight of his career, the two-time MVP is beset with injuries and the realities of aging. But he’s not ready to give up just yet.

Invisible Strings

Invisible Strings

Never Know Productions’ documentary travels to India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and other corners of the globe to explore the connections between society, religion and everything in our universe. Support this amazing production on Kickstarter.

Grounded: Making The Last of Us

Grounded: Making The Last of Us

(NSFW, Spoilers) The trailer for Grounded: Making The Last of Us, a feature-length documentary about how developer Naughty Dog made one of the few AAA games to live up to its hype. Watch it for free in 1080p on YouTube.

Zero Point (Trailer)

Zero Point (Trailer)

Condition One’s documentary about the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset. Along with its standard releases, Zero Point will also be the first movie to have an interactive 360º 3D version, which can be watched only on the Rift.

Cowboy: As I Am

Cowboy: As I Am

Steven Millward was injured falling from a rodeo horse 20 years ago. He now relies on horse whisperer Grant Golliher to help manage his herd. But despite his physical setbacks, Steven is still a cowboy in the deepest recesses of his soul.

The Roving Typist

The Roving Typist

Mark Cersosimo’s latest thoughtful piece, The Roving Typist, introduces us to C.D. Hermelin, an engaging New York-based writer who creates one-of-a-kind stories for passersby with a few dollars to spare on his typewriter in the park.

Life After Pi (Trailer)

Life After Pi (Trailer)

At the same time that Rhythm & Hues‘ incredible VFX propelled Life of Pi to an Oscar win, the company was going bankrupt. This documentary goes behind the dark truths of Hollywood’s commoditization of the visual effects industry.

Made in the Land of Wheat & Maize

Made in the Land of Wheat & Maize

“There’s something sacred going on, and I can understand it.” Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon talks about his love for his hometown of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and how it shapes him and his music. A nice interview by Red Wing Shoes.

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Kaz: Pushing the Virtual Divide

Kaz: Pushing the Virtual Divide

A documentary about the Gran Turismo series and its creator – pro racer, game designer and Polyphony Digital CEO Kazunori Yamauchi. The full film is available for free in 1080p on YouTube and Vimeo.

Years of Living Dangerously (Trailer)

Years of Living Dangerously (Trailer)

With the backing of James Cameron, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jerry Weintraub and others, this documentary series from Showtime casts celebrities as correspondents reporting on the human impact of climate change on our planet.

This is Not a Conspiracy Theory

This is Not a Conspiracy Theory

“What we are now realizing is that we are guided, constrained and even controlled by the systems we have made.” From Kirby Ferguson (Everything is a Remix) comes a documentary miniseries about the forces that shape our lives.

Dick Jewell: Moving Pictures

Dick Jewell: Moving Pictures

(NSFW) “On the cutting edge, things are always on the move.” Jamie Roberts’ short profile on Dick Jewell, an English videographer, filmmaker and historian “obsessed with movement – both physical and cultural.”

Drummer Wanted : Dean Zimmer

Drummer Wanted : Dean Zimmer

Dean Zimmer has faced physical challenges since birth, but that hasn’t stopped him from being an amazing rock drummer, having opened for acts like Styx, Kansas and Foghat. Documentary by Ross Harris and Stanley Gonzales.

GoPro & Kevin Richardson: Lions

GoPro & Kevin Richardson: Lions

GoPro went to Africa with “lion whisperer” Kevin Richardson to hang out with and learn more about hyenas and lions. Richardson warns us that our vision of Africa as a continent filled with wild animals is fast becoming a fantasy.

A Brief History of John Baldessari

A Brief History of John Baldessari

Supermarché’s profile on John Baldessari, a prolific conceptual artist known for remixing photos to create narratives, using text as visual art and his awareness of the precarious value of high art. Narrated by Tom Waits.

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NPR: How T-shirts Are Made

NPR: How T-shirts Are Made

NPR’s Planet Money made a series of short videos to show us the technology, the places and most importantly the people that make mass-produced t-shirts. You can watch the whole series on NPR, Vimeo and YouTube.

Whoop Dreams (Trailer)

Whoop Dreams (Trailer)

(NSFW) We’re not sure what possessed Filmdrunk to shoot a feature-length documentary on the Gathering of the Juggalos but we can only imagine what horrors will be revealed when the film comes out in early 2014.

’58 Plymouth Fury: Living Christine

’58 Plymouth Fury: Living Christine

The Aficionauto spoke with Martin Sanchez, who bought and restored a ’58 Plymouth Fury that was used in John Carpenter’s adaptation of Stephen King’s novel Christine. But Martin and Christine’s bond is beyond just the film.

Sunday Symphony

Sunday Symphony

An in-depth look at the people, the technology and the “highly organized chaos” behind Fox Sports’ NFL broadcasts. Amazingly, a lot of the equipment has to be assembled and then torn down every weekend. More on The Verge.

In Saturn’s Rings (Trailer 2)

In Saturn’s Rings (Trailer 2)

A new trailer for In Saturn’s Rings, a time-lapse movie made of over a million images taken by satellites, spacecraft, obervatories and more. Filmmaker Stephen van Vuuren is raising funds to get an orchestral score created for the movie.

The Record Breaker

The Record Breaker

Brian McGinn’s short film about Ashrita Furman, who holds over 350 Guinness Records. A funny and sincere documentary about a man who loves raising the bar, although the quality of the bars he raised won’t raise the bar of bar-raising.

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