Top 27 Best Documentaries On Netflix Right Now (Updated August 2020)
From crime to sports to filmmaking
Best Documentaries On Netflix: The element that most viewers tend to gravitate toward when it comes to documentaries is the essence of real life that they glean through elements like assemblages of historical footage, photographs, pre recorded videos and audios, photographs, interviews or simple quotidian tasks.
There’s an undeniable feeling of authenticity even while watching something that is clearly biased. Even when the main focus of the documentary is on a pre-conceived narrative, there’s an unmistakable feeling of letting you delve into the filmmaker’s brain for a quick flash. The use of images, familiar existence in great documentaries, using snippets of the real world, makes the documentary even more intimate and real. With the recent explosions of the “docuseries” format, we have more ability to dig deeper into a story.
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Netflix has a bountiful of great documentaries that cover a diverse range of topics, right from crime to sports and even filmmaking. We have curated a list of Top 27 best documentaries on Netflix. Allow us to guide you choose from the variety.
Best Documentaries on Netflix
Director: Ava DuVernay
This Netflix documentary looks at the massive incarceration of the minorities following the passage of 13th Ammendment. It explores the intersection of race, justice and incarceration in US and throws light on the sloppy constitution. It’s not just ingrained racism that results in such a widespread incarceration but also the slavery that has been perpetrated since the end of American cold war.
For the financial incentive, it’s good business to lock people up. 13th shows how the blacks were targeted by media, government and by businesses to create a new form of slavery. This Netflix documentary will infuriate you, depress you and will make you question the system that has repeatedly done egrigious harm to the fellow citizens. As Barack Obama said, “US had 5% of world population but 25% world prisoners”, shows the atrocities on the blacks and the sufferings they have been through.
Director: Asif Kapadia
You don’t have to be a fan of—or even familiar with—Formula 1 racing to appreciate the 2010 documentary Senna. Presented entirely through archival footage, the film chronicles the life and staggering death of Brazilian racing champion Ayrton Senna. He made his triumphant debut at the 1984 Brazilian Grand Prix and died in a horrible accident at the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix. The film also chronicles Senna’s rivalry with fellow driver Alain Prost, and fans of Ron Howard’s underrated narrative film Rush will no doubt find Senna of particular interest. It’s both thrilling and heartbreaking in equal measure, and Kapadia’s unique choices result in a film that puts you inside Senna’s POV, instead of at arm’s reach.
You don’t need to be an enthusiast of—or even acquainted with—Formula 1 racing to value the 2010 narrative Senna. Introduced totally through authentic archival footages, the film accounts the life and staggering demise of Brazilian racing champion Ayrton Senna, who made his triumphant debut at the 1984 Brazilian Grand Prix and kicked the bucket in an unpleasant mishap at the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix.
The Netflix film additionally accounts Senna’s competition with fellow driver Alain Prost, and devotees of Ron Howard’s underrated narrative film Rush will no doubt discover Senna exceptionally compelling. It’s both exciting and tragic in equivalent measure, and Kapadia’s unique choices bring about a film that puts you inside Senna’s POV, instead of at arm’s reach.
Senna is one of the best documentaries streaming on Netflix.
Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness
Directors: Eric Goode and Rebecca Chaiklin
Each installment of the seven-episode Netflix docu-series will keep you at the edge of the knife throughout, it is crazier to a point that you may find yourself constantly saying,’it can’t be any worse than this” ,You would be 100% wrong.
Tiger King chronicles Joe Exotic’s exploitations, who is a flamboyant and extremely confident owner of a private big cat zoo in Oklahoma. This story of Joe Exotic is full of lies, guns, a bid for the U.S. presidency, and a murder-for-hire plot. This is a thing that must be seen to be believed.
Tiger King is one of the best Netflix Documentaries to watch right now.
Directors: Nicole Newnham and Jim Lebrecht
The first Netflix documentary to hail from executive producers Michelle and Barack Obama was the Oscar-winning American Factory, and their second effort Crip Camp is just as great if not better. The film sparkles a light on the individuals who spent most of their adult lives fighting for basic human rights, with many having attended a camp for disabled tends called Camp Jened in the 1970s.
Incredible archival footage from this camp opens the film, but we then follow the various people we’ve met as they spend the next few decades embroiled in activism to pass legislation to make the world accessible for those with disabilities. It’s a fight that never should have had to be fought in the first place, and it’s both inspiring and infuriating to see how tirelessly these individuals had to push and push and push to affect even the tiniest bit of change.
Director: Lana Wilson
The Taylor Swift Netflix documentary Miss Americana is far from your typical music doc. It isn’t even really all that focused on Swift’s music so much as it is on Swift as a person. More specifically, it’s a film about Swift’s long journey to figuring out how not to let other’s opinion bother her, and how that manifests in her feminist awakening and decision to publicly express her political opinion — which we see occur in real-time. Some will ding the film for being too manicured, and in truth it’s next to impossible to impart how heavy a hand Swift had in the tailoring of the documentary re: her self image.
But the Netflix documentaries’ actual snapshots of insight are hard to ignore, and it’s entrancing to watch Swift grapple with who she is as a human being while also being one of the most acclaimed individuals on the planet.
Directors: Steven Bognar, Julia Reichert
Do you want to feel good about the state of the American industry and the treatment of its for labour force? At that point skip this flick. American Factory is the honor winning glance at an old General Motors plant in Dayton, Ohio which is given a renewed perspective when a very rich Chinese person puts resources into it as another American glass-production office for his organization, Fuyao. On the off chance that you’ve at any point taken a shot at a processing plant floor or been a piece of either side of the picket line, you know how this story goes.
This narrative is the primary title under the Higher Ground flag, a creation organization shaped by President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama and disseminated by Netflix. In any case, it’s initial a creation of Participant Media, which screened the narrative at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival where it won the Best Documentary honor and got the consideration of Netflix and the Obamas.
And just in case their involvement sways you one way or the other, try to check that bias at the door; ; American Factory tells of the plight of the skilled labor force, be they American or Chinese, as easy victims of the rich and powerful, be they American or Chinese. And it’s also the story of the American Dream, and whether that’s a fact or a fallacy.
There’s likewise a stinger toward the end bemoaning a definitive decrease of the human workforce because of robotization, yet it merits recollecting that the machines themselves are just instruments that improve the creation pipeline; it’s as yet an individual, and regularly a bean-tallying, base liner who stands to make a couple of more focuses on their stock portfolio, who decides to supplant fragile living creature and-blood laborers by the day’s end.
It is one of the best documentaries on Netflix.
The Great Hack
Directors: Karim Amer and Jehane Noujaim
The 2019 Netflix narrative The Great Hack brings a profound plunge into the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica embarrassment, and how, in spite of Facebook’s dissents, the internet based life mammoth utilized individual information collected by its clients.
Through meetings with insightful writers and Cambridge Analytica informant Brittany Kaiser, the film offers a stunning profound jump of how information has become the most important asset on earth, and how information is utilized to target clients with promotions and phony “viral recordings” and reports to swing significant races. One of the most upsetting narratives of 2019, full-stop.
Power of Grayskull: The Definitive History of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe
Authors/Directors: Randall Lobb, Robert McCallum
Intensity of Grayskull: The Definitive History of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe is one of the best Netflix documentaries. It lets you know precisely what is hanging tight for you in that spot in the title. From movie producers Lobb (Turtle Power, and the up and coming Conan the Barbarian and The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance narratives) and McCallum (Nintendo Quest) comes a profound plunge into everything He-Man.
From the riotous making of the musclebound legend as a Mattel toy establishment devised as a contender to Kenner, to the depressed spots of the brand in the late 80s and 90s, and the cutting edge resurgence of the property on account of a devoted fanbase and sharp imaginative choices, this narrative is a one-stop look for all things MotU.
In pretty much 95 minutes, this protracted visit with creatives off camera of the brand, traversing from the mid 80s to today, tells the untold story of how one of the most notorious manifestations became. It’s captivating enough for general crowds to perceive how the hotdog is made in ventures as fluctuated but then interconnected as toys, funnies, kid’s shows, live-activity films, and the sky is the limit from there, yet it’s certainly made for the diehard He-Man and She-Ra fans out there. Furthermore, in case you’re an authority, viewing the doc probably won’t be sufficient for you; fortunately you can include the recently discharged home video to your MotU assortment beginning September third!
Knock Down the House
Executive: Rachel Lears
While some might rush to excuse this narrative since its fundamental figure is liberal political Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, Rachel Lears’ film isn’t generally worried about the right-left separation. Rather, it’s about guerilla, grassroots lawmakers battling the settled in foundation power.
Despite the fact that Ocasio-Cortez’ story over-curves the entire film, Lears additionally sets aside effort to follow other female government officials who are trying to win their essential fights. The film is at its best when it shows the abrasive, unglamorous work of battling and building a development. In case you’re tired of nothing new government officials who have overlooked their constituents, Knock Down the House gives a moving convention cry.
If you are looking for best documentaries to watch on Netflix then you must add this one in your list.
20 Feet from Stardom
Executive: Morgan Neville
Narrative producer Morgan Neville has special insight with engaging stories. Regardless of whether it’s Won’t You Be My Neighbor or They’ll Love Me When I’m Dead, he’s magnificently gifted at chronicling genuine such that feels like a totally scripted story. 2013’s 20 Feet from Stardom is the same, as the film puts the focus on reinforcement artists—the concealed countenances whose voices are fundamental to the absolute most well known melodies ever.
The film is pressed with interesting in the background stories from the creation of notable melodies like “Gimme Shelter”,” however it’s Neville’s emphasis on the individuals behind these voices that makes it genuinely unique. It’s nothing unexpected the film won the Best Documentary Feature Oscar in 2014.
Abducted in Plain Sight
Executive: Skye Borgman
The words “bonkers”, “insane”, and “wild” may strike a chord while watching the genuine wrongdoing narrative Abducted in Plain Sight, yet they would all be invalidated by the upsetting story that unfurls in Skye Borgman’s film. The account follows the Broberg family, whose girl Jan was kidnapped not once yet twice by their neighbor Robert ‘B’ Berchtold. The subtleties of those kidnappings positively fall into the domain of more odd than-fiction, however the techniques for Berchtold are that of a genuine beast and predator who tore the Broberg family separated just so he could get at Jan. Truly, the subtleties of the story are stunning, yet the general account is undeniably all the more frightening.
Five Came Back
Chief: Laurent Bouzereau
The three-scene docuseries Five Came Back is an adjustment of writer Mark Harris’ true to life book of a similar name, which sees World War II however the eyes of five movie producers who helped the war exertion in various manners: John Ford, William Wyler, John Huston, Frank Capra, and George Stevens.
These famous Hollywood Directors were enrolled to make different narratives during the war to mobilize support, train troops, and record terrible encounters. The docuseries—described by Meryl Streep and including interviews with people like Steven Spielberg and Guillermo del Toro—investigates their vocations before the war, the sorts of movies they made for the administration during the war, and how their work was perpetually changed by their encounters. It’s an absolute necessity see for WWII buffs, and not exclusively is it marvelously organized, yet Netflix has additionally made accessible 13 of the narratives talked about in the film to watch after it’s finished.
Beyond the Mat
Picture by means of Universal Pictures
Before Darren Aronofksy’s The Wrestler, there was Beyond the Mat, the grittiest gander at proficient wrestling that is yet been created. Barry W. Balustein’s 1999 narrative hit at the stature of the WWE Attitude time, when wrestling was more well known than it had ever been, including the Hulk Hogan wonder of the 1980s.
The film follows wrestling legends Mick Foley, Terry Funk, and Jake “The Snake” Roberts, all at various phases of their professions at the hour of recording. Blaustein unflinchingly shows the extraordinary harm each of the three men are doing to their bodies and psyches just to remain in the business, which broadly doesn’t permit its laborers to unionize in spite of the exceptional visiting plan and physical requests forced upon them. (Numerous ace grapplers bite the dust youthful from sedate maltreatment therefore.)
Both Foley and Funk have a notoriety of being “no-nonsense” grapplers (Foley specifically), and at one point in the film we see Foley’s better half and little youngsters viewing in dread as he is struck over and over in the head with a steel collapsing seat by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. In the interim, Funk’s body is self-destructing following quite a while in the business, and Roberts is indicated spiraling profound into melancholy and medication misuse. Past the Mat reveals insight into the darkest real factors of the business, and is an absolute necessity watch for wrestling fans, yet for anybody searching for a genuinely grasping narrative.
Food is culture. That is somewhat the focal reason of the Netflix narrative arrangement Ugly Delicious, which is part food appear, part travelog, and part narrative. The show’s eight-scene first season dives profound into nourishments like pizza, grill, and tacos as host/official maker/widely acclaimed gourmet specialist David Chang explores what makes a pizza a pizza, or what in fact comprises a taco. In any case, rapidly, the show hit upon outlining society through food—how does a conventional pizza made in Naples become a Domino’s pizza?
What does pizza intend to the individuals of Italy versus the individuals requesting conveyance? This offered a way to investigate not exactly how the food changes here and there, yet who the individuals are in each spot, and why they eat the food they eat. That thought is extended much further in the show’s subsequent season, as it investigates subjects of parenthood, how uprooting influences food culture, and the moving idea of what a “nice meal” signifies to individuals. This is extraordinary survey however be careful: it’ll make you hungry.
They’ll Love Me When I’m Dead
Executive: Morgan Neville
When Netflix at long last discharged the tragically deceased Orson Welles film The Other Side of the Wind in November 2018, they all the while dropped a narrative about the creation of the famous film. The outcome, They’ll Love Me When I’m Dead, is completely captivating as it not just annals the decades-long excursion of taking a shot at, shooting, reshooting, altering, reshooting, re-altering, and so on of The Other Side of the Wind, yet it additionally gives understanding into Welles’ profession in the shadow of Citizen Kane.
In case you’re to some degree new to Welles’ work outside that perfect work of art, The Other Side of the Wind is an absolute necessity watch, as it clarifies why and how he sort of blurred in his later years. In any case, past that, the creation of The Other Side of the Wind is basically crazy.
It is one of the best documentaries streaming on Netflix right now.
Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes
Chief: Joe Berlinger
Infamous sequential executioner Ted Bundy was special in that he eventually didn’t admit to his violations—which incorporate the homicide of in any event 30 ladies—until days before his execution. So the four-section docuseries Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes pulls from a meeting arrangement in which Bundy consented to talk as an outsider looking in, dissecting the sort of individual who may have carried out the wrongdoings credited to him.
The tapes themselves sincerely don’t give an excess of understanding, however Berlinger’s narrative does. He meets just the individuals who connected with Bundy face to face and accounts the executioner’s life and violations, comparing them with the falsehoods Bundy frequently told about himself and his childhood. It’s an engaging watch that gives adequate voice to Bundy’s casualties while additionally clarifying how Bundy had the option to escape experts for such a long time.
The Unknown Known
Executive: Errol Morris
While various movies have been made about the Iraq War, unbelievable narrative producer Errol Morris goes directly to the hotspot for The Unknown Known. The film accounts the political profession of previous U.S. Secretary of Defense and congressman Donald Rumsfeld, with Rumsfeld himself covering for a progression of meetings with Morris.
Extreme inquiries are posed, and keeping in mind that Morris isn’t generally here to out and out concede bad behavior or reexamine his decisions, the relentlessness and certainty with which he relates the Iraq War adventure is out and out chilling. To the extent political narratives go, this Netflix documentary is an unquestionable requirement watch.
Executives: Noah Baumabch and Jake Paltrow
De Palma is a flat out must-look for all cinephiles, regardless of whether you’re a fanatic of Brian De Palma’s work or not. The movie’s arrogance is fundamentally that producers and De Palma fans Noah Baumbach and Jake Paltrow sit the unbelievable executive before a camera and pepper him with a reiteration of inquiries that spread his whole profession, for which De Palma is glad to get directly to the point.
Hear tales about the creation of movies like Scarface, Blow Out, and Untouchables, his fellowship with producers like Martin Scorsese and George Lucas (and ensuing envy when their vocations went stratospheric and his didn’t), and the innovative strains on the arrangement of Mission: Impossible. You’ll leave needing Baumbach and Paltow to transform this into a progression of narratives about different movie producers going through their whole filmographies.
Audrie and Daisy
Directors: Bonni Cohen and Jon Shenk
Audrie and Daisy is an extreme watch, yet in addition an important one—particularly in 2018. The narrative annals the tales of two secondary school understudies who were explicitly ambushed. Audrie, 15, was exposed to such extraordinary cyberbullying after the episode that she ended it all.
Daisy, 14 at the hour of her ambush, finds out about Audrie’s story and attempts to connect, just to find she’s as of now gone. The film tracks the occasions of both awful accidents while likewise chronicling how the establishments intended to secure residents bombed both of these casualties. And keeping in mind that this is a seriously enthusiastic film, the mental fortitude of Daisy’s story imparts expectation, and Cohen and Shenk finish up the film by concentrating on the endeavors being made to stop attack before it starts.
Formula 1: Drive to Survive
On the off chance that you believe you’re not an enthusiast of Formula 1 dashing, get ready to change your convictions. The great docu-series Formula 1: Drive to Survive takes a whole period of Formula 1 dashing and consolidates it into its best minutes and storytlines with every scene moving toward an arresting point separated essentially from who’s the best group or who’s triumphant in the standings.
Rather, the movie producers locate a remarkable point in each scene whether it’s a group’s two drivers who don’t get along, a driver who is battling with a progression of accidents, a supervisor who doesn’t have a clue how to get the best execution out of his group, and that’s just the beginning.
This is then matched with some extremely staggering film that underscores the speed and spryness of these brilliant vehicles. In the event that you’ve taken a gander at Formula 1 and simply observe a lot of vehicles circumventing a track on many occasions, Drive to Survive appears there’s a great deal more occurring in the engine.
It is a must watch Netflix documentary.
The Vietnam War
Directors: Ken Burns and Lynn Novick
Author: Geoffrey C. Ward
While charged as a “film,” Ken Burns’ most recent narrative epic The Vietnam War is 17 hours long, so you’re likely not going to have the option to watch this one across the board go. Furthermore, regardless of whether you might, I’m be able to not certain you’d need to. Much the same as Burns’ different docs like The Roosevelts or The Civil War, The Vietnam War brings a profound plunge into critical crossroads in American history, yet this film is additionally joined by nerve racking film from one of the most exceedingly awful wars in American history.
The doc makes a sensational showing of contextualizing precisely how this war started, following its foundations back to 1858, and furthermore looks towards the future as all sides attempt to discover mending and compromise. The film is pressed with clever and enthusiastic meetings with the two Americans and the individuals who encountered the war firsthand from both North Vietnam and South Vietnam, as those included offer real insights concerning what precisely went on from their perspective.
This is an unquestionable requirement watch for each American resident, and keeping in mind that minutes are in reality realistic and disturbing, they’re urgent to understanding the errors made previously with the goal that they’re ideally not rehashed later on.
Chief: Will Allen
There are a ton of narratives about factions, yet Holy Hell is absolutely one of the most immersing to handle this specific subject. The film hails from Will Allen, who reports his own understanding as an individual from the Buddhafield faction for a long time, which was driven by a puzzling man who passes by the name Michel.
What makes this specific narrative so interesting is the way that Allen filled in as the gathering’s legitimate videographer, so there’s an abundance of film from inside the religion that is contextualized with present day interviews from previous individuals.
There are numerous exciting bends in the road to be found as the story unfurls, and it’s no spoiler to state that Michel is found to be a remarkable megalomaniacal pioneer. However, Holy Hell works superbly of investigating why individuals were so hypnotized by Michel’s lessons, and how their very own encounters in the public eye made them increasingly powerless and prone to stay as things got more unusual and more unusual.
Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond
Chief: Chris Smith
During the creation of the 1999 film Man on the Moon, on-screen character Jim Carrey settled on the choice to go full-strategy into the character of Andy Kaufman. He solicited a couple from Kaufman’s genuine companions to help archive the experience, recording Carrey both on and off set during the troublesome shoot.
In any case, Universal Pictures kept the recording from ever coming around, for dread that individuals would think Carrey was “a butt face.” So Jim and Andy: The Great Beyond uncovers this recording for the absolute first time, and is compared with an amazingly open meeting with Carrey shot in 2017. The outcome is a captivating, determined account of Carrey’s strategy acting—which on occasion was rough and goading.
Be that as it may, the film is likewise a contemplative gander at Carrey’s life and vocation, and what is most important to him. Obviously the Man on the Moon experience profoundly affected Carrey’s life, and everlastingly changed how he saw things. For devotees of Carrey’s work, this strange bit of narrative filmmaking an unquestionable requirement see.
Executive: Jacob LaMendola
The less you think about Jacob LaMendola’s 40-minute narrative Long Shot the better since its exciting bends in the road are completely stunning regardless of whether its bigger point ought to be singed into watchers recollections at this point. By and large, the narrative spotlights on Juan Catalan, who was blamed for a homicide he didn’t submit and the lengths he needed to go to so as to demonstrate his honesty.
While our equity framework likes to tout that the charged are “honest until demonstrated blameworthy,” Long Shot shows in its brief runtime that the fact of the matter is the exact inverse. In spite of the feeble proof against Catalan, he must be phenomenally fortunate to demonstrate his honesty and that we have a framework that boosts analysts and investigators basically to close cases instead of discover equity. The splendid thing about Long Shot is that it never needs to come directly out and state it. The case says a lot all alone.
Coordinated by: Ryan White
The “docuseries” design has become to some degree stylish starting late, with HBO’s The Jinx and Netflix’s Making a Murderer extending the whodunit idea of a scene of Dateline into a six, seven, or eight-hour thorough gander at a virus case or some wrongdoing with a snare. From the outset become flushed, Netflix’s The Keepers appeared to be in a similar vein of these other watercooler arrangement.
This Netflix documentary vowed to dig into the strange vanishing and murder of a pious devotee, Sister Cathy Cesnik, in 1969, looking at the conditions, the numerous suspects, and other applicable parts of the case. It’s before long uncovered that Cesnik may have revealed shocking sexual maltreatment that was going on at the all-young ladies Archbishop Keough High School. In particular, ladies approached with charges that two ministers at the school, most unmistakably Father Joseph Maskell, had been compelling female understudies to perform sex follows up on him and others. The hypothesis, at that point, was that Sister Cathy was resolved to out and end the maltreatment, and was killed so as to quiet her.
Misuse has perpetual, annihilating consequences for the person in question, and The Keepers exposes this in a striking, upsetting, yet essential way. How might we hope to forestall this sort of maltreatment later on in the event that we go with the same pattern and excuse it as “not our concern” or something best took care of discreetly? Never again are these casualties disgraced as liars, or quieted with dangers—The Keepers gives them the space to recount to their story, and as fascinating as Sister Cathy’s homicide puzzle seems to be, it’s simply a passage point to an enthusiastic and impactful story that at last paints Sister Cathy as a legend who kicked the bucket attempting to make the best decision.
Executive: Bryan Fogel
This film is crazy. Icarus started as a venture from Bryan Fogel in which the narrative movie producer needed to go on a doping routine for the Haute Route to check whether he could evade the race’s extreme medication testing. Be that as it may, as Fogel reaches a Russian master in doping, he before long gets entangled in the greatest athletic embarrassment ever, as his “master” ends up being the driving force behind Russia
Directors: Rod Blackhurst and Brian McGinn
Regardless of whether you’re as of now acquainted with the Amanda Knox case or just have a dubious memory of the name, the Netflix unique narrative Amanda Knox is a profoundly entrancing watch. Surrounded by elite meetings with the main subject herself, just as those personally associated with the case, Amanda Knox accounts the homicide of Knox’s flat mate and the ensuing examination, preliminaries, and bids in regards to her obvious contribution. In any case, past essentially expounding on the case, the film is additionally a burning prosecution of the media’s intrinsic sexism, and how open discernment with regards to ladies and sex can be slanted enormously.
This is a list of 27 best documentaries on Netflix. It was last updated on August 4, 2020 and we will keep updating it on a weekly basis.