THE BEST Documentaries

Before the Flood (Full Movie)

Before the Flood (Full Movie)

“In 2040, you will be able to sail over the North Pole.” Fisher Stevens’ documentary about Leonardo DiCaprio’s three-year journey to enlighten himself about climate change is currently available on National Geographic’s YouTube channel for free.

Bug Man

Bug Man

Director Iqbal Ahmed’s fascinating and beautifully filmed short documentary introduces us to Steven Kutcher, a man full self-aware of his quirks, who has found a way to make a living – and art, through his love for insects.

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Sundown

Sundown

Craryville, New York’s Camp Sundown is a summer camp for children who can’t go out during daytime. The kids suffer from Xeroderma pigmentosum, a rare disorder that renders their bodies unable to repair damage caused by exposure to ultraviolet light.

Planet Earth II (Trailer 2)

Planet Earth II (Trailer 2)

Check out some of the most jaw-dropping close ups, slow motion and tracking shots you’ll ever see in the extended trailer for BBC’s upcoming nature documentary Planet Earth II. Hans Zimmer made an original score for the film, so it will melt your eyes and ears at the same time.

The Unlinked Heritage of Snowboarding

The Unlinked Heritage of Snowboarding

The snowboard is based on the snurfer, an American invention from 1965. But Wrkshrt and Patagonia heard of Petran, a remote town in Turkey where snow surfing has been around for nearly 300 years. So they went there to check out the snowboard’s forgotten ancestor.

The New Space Race: XCOR Lynx

The New Space Race: XCOR Lynx

YouTube channel Freethink has a new series of brief documentaries about private space technology companies. The first episode is about XCOR and its Lynx, an airplane-like rocketship that could one day make four flights a day, five days a week.

Planet Earth II (Trailer)

Planet Earth II (Trailer)

BBC’s chill and beautiful nature series returns. Filmed over the course of three years, Planet Earth II used the latest camera technologies to explore “the unique characteristics of Earth’s most iconic habitats and the extraordinary ways animals survive within them.”

The Dangerous Life of John McAfee

The Dangerous Life of John McAfee

John McAfee rose to fame building anti-virus software, but the tech-savvy millionaire would go on to become a drug lord living off the grid in Belize, and somehow later would run for the U.S. presidency. Now learn about the bizarre path he chose in this Showtime documentary.

Before the Flood (Trailer)

Before the Flood (Trailer)

“We’re knowingly doing this.” In this documentary, actor and environmental activist Leonardo DiCaprio travels around the world to speak with politicians, scientists and fellow advocates and witness first hand the effects of climate change. Premieres 10/30/16 on Nat Geo.

13th (Trailer)

13th (Trailer)

From Selma director Ava DuVernay comes a Netflix documentary about America’s problems regarding mass incarceration and the privatization of its prisons, both stemming from the abuse of the US Constitution’s Thirteenth Amendment. Drops 10/7/16.

Porsche 964: The Evolution of a Driver

Porsche 964: The Evolution of a Driver

Petrolicious introduces us to lifelong gearhead Hans-Michael Gerischer. He started with VW Beetles, then moved on to a Porsche 964 to try track racing. As he got better at driving, he would tweak his car to suit his needs. Now he restores 911s as a side gig.

Japanese Arcades: A Review

Japanese Arcades: A Review

YouTube gaming critic George Weidman aka Super Bunnyhop gives us an overview of Japan’s thriving arcade industry. A combination of cramped homes, pedestrian-friendly streets and abundant coins have kept Japanese arcades alive and evolving.

Owning a Ramen Restaurant

Owning a Ramen Restaurant

“I put my very best in every bowl I make.” Meet Kunimoto. He owns a ramen restaurant in Tokyo, Japan. Or, as YouTuber Life Where I’m From puts it, the restaurant owns him. He can’t find full-time employees, so he works from 8:00 am to 11:30pm six days a week.

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Follow My Lead (Trailer)

Follow My Lead (Trailer)

Made by the NBA, Oculus and Missing Pieces for the Samsung Gear VR, Follow My Lead: The Story of the 2016 NBA Finals is a 25-minute virtual reality documentary that gives you an immersive look at the Cleveland Cavaliers’ road to their first title. More on Polygon.

Johanna Under The Ice

Johanna Under The Ice

NOWNESS and photographer Ian Derry visited freediver Johanna Nordblad, the woman who holds a world record for diving under ice. Her fascination with the frigid, yet peaceful conditions came after she was subjected to ice water treatments for a serious leg fracture.

White Helmets (Trailer)

White Helmets (Trailer)

A Netflix documentary about the Syrian Civil Defense, commonly known as White Helmets after their distinctive protective gear. They are unarmed volunteers that rescue civilians caught in bombing strikes. According to the BBC, they have saved 56,000 lives so far. Premieres 9/16.

Red Heaven

Red Heaven

This month, the scientists who participated in a year-long isolation experiment to simulate life on Mars are going to “return to Earth.”  Red Heaven is a documentary featuring footage of the scientists before, during and after the grueling and mentally exhausting simulation.

aRm1

aRm1

Motorcyclist Chris Ganley was in a horrific crash, resulting in the loss of his left hand and arm. But his determination drove him to get back on his steel horse, and Chris hopes to one day race the deadly Isle of Man TT. A brilliantly edited documentary by The Roos Brothers.

Leave it to the Movers

Leave it to the Movers

This 2011 documentary shows how the Japanese’s diligence and world famous work ethic translates to its moving companies. Aside from transporting your belongings, they will pack and unpack your items as they were, and even clean both your old and new homes.

Ruben’s Elevator

Ruben’s Elevator

“I’m right here on the first floor. The doors are open. I’m ready for more.” Meet Ruben Pardo, who has worked for 40 years as an elevator operator at an iconic art deco tower in Los Angeles. Dress Code’s charming look at a man dedicated to his work and supporting his family.

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The World’s Deadliest Garden

The World’s Deadliest Garden

Great Big Story takes us on a trip to Alnwick Castle’s Poison Garden, an oddity which grows only plants which are capable of causing major harm. The garden currently has about 100 varieties of deadly plant life. We’re guessing they don’t have any problems with vermin.

When Two Worlds Collide (Trailer)

When Two Worlds Collide (Trailer)

(PG-13: Language) A harrowing documentary about the conflict between Peru’s minorities and its government. In the early 2000s, Peru invited foreign companies to take advantage of the country’s natural resources, most of which lay in constitutionally-protected land.

Bacon & God’s Wrath

Bacon & God’s Wrath

“Some of my most intimate thoughts and questions were shared, were so common. The Google could anticipate it.” In filmmaker Sol Friedman’s short documentary we meet Razie, a 90-year-old woman who had a change of faith soon after she started using the Internet.

Graphic Means (Trailer)

Graphic Means (Trailer)

Briar Levit’s Graphic Means is an upcoming documentary that will explore the history of graphic design production and desktop publishing, starting from the meticulous analog processes of the ’50s to the instant gratification and one man operations we have today.

How Google Doodles Are Made

How Google Doodles Are Made

Google employees Nat and Lo visited the Google Doodle design team to find out how they make the interactive Google logos. In particular, Nat and Lo spoke to the members who came up with the Olympic-themed Doodle, the Fruit Games.

Mister Sunshine

Mister Sunshine

When Larry Woods was a millionaire back in the day, he was a self-confessed a-hole. But a single moment set him on the path to discovering true happiness. His new career as a shoeshine man may be humble, but it’s clear that he’s a much better person for it.

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