You can't negate the power of a documentary game that involves real crime, history, sports. Netflix has everything. Where do you even start?
You know where this is going. Check out this list for every genre of documentary on Netflix. Good luck and apologies!
Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened (2019)
, but I prefer this Netflix one. Unlike many Netflix documentaries that are stretched and bloated into multi-part episodes, this documentary is sharp, direct, and solid gold the whole way through.
What Happened to Miss Simone? (2015)
Nothing will be said much here. Nina Simone is a hugely talented writer and this is perhaps the best documentaries I've ever seen.
The Great Hack (2019)
The Facebook/Cambridge Analytica controversy almost resembles ancient history, but it does not make this documentary any less significant. If you haven't seen it, then check it out.
A British Horror Story, directed by Jimmy Savile
During Savile's time, a British Horror Story does a great job of getting through the archives, combining footage that is frightening in hindsight, and adding fantastic interviews with some of the major actors in British television. This is a difficult task, however.
The Tinder Swindler (2022)
A documentary focuses on Shimon Hayut, also known as "Tinder Swindler," a conman who used dating apps to defraud many women in Europe to build a lavish lifestyle.
This topic is slightly different from the rest of Netflix's most famous crime documentaries. It's certainly worth a look.
The Raincoat Killer (2021)
Today it's rare to see a lean, clean direct true to crime show that does not drag things out or deliberately obscen facts for the sake of drama. But that's exactly why The Raincoat Killer is so good and unique.
The Raincoat Killer, a brutal serial killer in South Korea, is a comprehensive, well-known film on Netflix.
The Burari Deaths in the House of Secrets (2021)
This is a great one. House of Secrets, which focuses on the bizarre death of 11 family members at a house in Burari, Delhi, India in 2018, reveals the origins of the strangest suicide/murder cases in recent memory. Unmissable stuff.
This Is a Robbery (2021)
This Is a Robbery is about Netflix as it gets. A four-part series focusing on the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, this is essentially a documentary about an art heist. (Which is also on this list.) This Is a Robbery is very much in that style. The first episode takes a while to get going, but this one has a payoff.
Assassination Among Mormons (2021)
Some of Netflix's most recent true crime documentaries have been a bit depressed and... sorta bad?
Despite the fact that Murder Among the Mormons is a comeback. Definitely watch this one.
Murder in the United States: The Family Next Door (2020)
There are a number of genuine crime documentaries out there, yet American Murder: The Family Next Door is still alive.
The footage reveals Chris Watts, a seemingly regular guy who murdered his wife and children. It's staggering and exciting, with text messages and social media posts to enthuse the story. It's a disturbing reminder of the incredibly common existence of domestic violence.
The Staircase (2018)
At this point, the true crime documentary genre is entirely stereolithic, but The Staircase stands out.
The Staircase, which is based on Michael Peterson's death and his wife Kathleen, is more than a murder mystery. It's a drawn-out adventure that takes place over literal decades, and a documentary that follows Peterson and examines his every move, but has nonetheless remains objective.
Who Killed Little Gregory (2019)
The documentary Who Killed Little Gregory is aimed at Gregory Villemin's horrific murder. It is arguably the best true crime documentary on Netflix. It's about a murder, and attempts to solve the murder, but it's also a lesson in media representation and the horrific sexism Gregory's mother had to face in the wake of her own murder.
Making a Murderer (2015-2018)
The vast array of true crime documentaries and podcasts that sparked attention is easy to forget that the world once lost its collective view of Making A Murderer. In a variety of ways, it created the template that many Netflix documentaries now follow. A real original.
There have been a slew of original crime stories on Netflix, but nothing has come to The Keepers. A staggering story, told across generations, that is respectful of the victims, yet powerful throughout.
Catherine Cesnik, a mother who taught at a Catholic school in Baltimore, is unsolved, but The Keepers goes further than you might expect, exposing a potential cover up of sex abuse allegations.
Seaspiracy follows in the footsteps of several narratives focusing on meat eating and the environment. This time, the global fishing industry is in the crosshairs. PETA, Greenpeace, and conservation groups cannot seem to agree if Seaspiracy is accurate or fair. Watch it and make up your own mind.
My Octopus Teacher (2020)
Craig Foster, an engineer who spent a year snorkelling and intercessoring with an octopus off the coast of South Africa, has been named My Octopus Teacher. It's a nature film, but it's a nature documentary that takes us to take action. But, here's how you can show the world's connections to nature.
Our Planet (2019)
Nature documents from David Attenborough are so popular they are vulnerable to self parody, but Our Planet is I believe the high watermark. Only Planet Earth, another Attenborough docu, comes close. I prefer this.
Tiger King (2020-21)
Time may thwart its effect, but when Tiger King was first released on Netflix, the whole world couldn't stop talking.
Tiger King explores the strange underbelly of big cat breeding, focusing on a cast of incredibly (and ultimately dangerous) characters. Season 2 is now available, but it's intriguing to catch up with this cast of wild animals doing wild, completely outlandish things.
Drive to Survive in Formula 1
Drive to Survive is the ultimate gold standard for long-running sports documentaries. It is so good, and so popular, that it has given a lot of attention to Formula 1, especially in the United States. This program is great at boosting the characters that dominate the sport. More shows like this are a good idea.
14 Peaks (2021)
Nimsdai Purja, a Nepalese mountaineer, shares his vision of climbing all 14 mountains above the height of 8000 metres in one year. It's incredible. Must watch everything.
Bad Sport (2021)
If Netflix had burned the True Crime documentary into the ground, then it's on fire when it comes to sports. Bad Sport is the latest entry into this fascinating sub category, and it's awesome. It's less about major players doing big things, it's about what happens when sport goes bad and gets down in the dirt. All of these episodes are fantastic. Looking for a second season
The River Runner (2021)
For kayaking, the River Runner is sorta like Free Solo. Consider that a compliment. This is an example of an extreme sports athlete overcomes odds, but it runs a little deeper than that. Lindgren is a compelling case study. Must watch stuff.
Untold is the latest from Wild Wild Country's guests. It's a sports documentary series with each episode covering different topics. Malice at the Palace, the famous basketball match, was built back in 2004. The second episode focuses on Christie Martin, who became famous after fighting on Mike Tyson's undercard. It's now available weekly and, so far, so good.
The Last Dance (2020)
In 2020, in the midst of a pandemic, Netflix dropped this piece of sports doc perfection.
The Last Dance is a jumping off line for a documentary that reveals the life story of Michael Jordan, the Chicago Bulls during their 97-98 NBA championship season. As a result, many critics criticized the film for being a little too Jordan-focused, but The Last Dance was a live-action documentary.
Naomi Osaka (2021)
Naomi Osaka has become one of the world's most famous athletes. This fascinating documentary explores the various stages of her career and offers unrivalled access to the life of a young lady who is struggling with the demands of sport and fame. A must watch.
Athlete A (2020)
Larry Nassar, the team doc for US Gymnastics, who was sexually abusing female athletes for decades, is a fantastic feature length expose. Be warned: This one is frightening.
This Oscar-winning documentary is an absolute winner.
Icarus starts out as a conversation on the impact performance-enhancing drugs have on sports performance, but a sequence of meetings pushes director Bryan Fogel into a slew of geopolitics and conspiracies. To say more, Fogel eventually has created a documentary that had a profound impact on our perception of sport as a whole. In that regard, Icarus is a literal game changer.
The Speed Cubers (2020)
If you're looking for a somewhat more engaging film, then you might miss The Speed Cubers, or a look at the world of competitive rubix... cubers? It's short, but it packs an incredible emotional punch. It's important to prepare yourself, and this one may be beneficial to your health.
The College Admissions Scandal in Operation Varsity Blues (2021)
Operation Varsity Blues: The College Admissions Scandal has been reimagined as many as some of Netflix's previous documents. However, this isn't as bloated as, say, the movie, but it might still be used to some trimming. Operation Varsity Blues focuses on the FBI's investigation into college admissions that put actress Felicity Huffman in jail. Its director Chris Smith previously worked on the Fyre Festival documentary. This isn't quite as
Knock Down the House (2019)
Knock Down The House is an incredible underdog story that cannot be missed, irrespective of your views on Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. It's a powerful documentary about progressive female candidates during the 2018 congressional primary campaigns. It's a fascinating study of the democratic process. It's a powerful reminder that we must fight to make the voices of ordinary people count.
Wild Wild Country (2018)
Wild Wild Country is despite being overly tired and bloated, but it is still one of the most fantastic documentary films I've ever seen on Netflix.
It reveals the story of Indian guru Bhagwan Shree Rajnees, who tried to establish a huge complex complex in the United States, which he termed a sex cult. It's a strange story that some might not believe. At times, it's a slog, but Wild Wild Country is absolutely beneficial.
The 13th (2016) Jury
The 13th by Ava Duvernay is a frightening film that chronicles American slavery and its long-lasting implications, many of which are still alive.
This should be mandatory viewing in the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Five Came Back (2017)
This documentary, directed by Steven Spielberg and Francis Ford Coppola, is absolutely marvelful. It combines their own strengths and the impact of the Second World War into a compelling story of Hollywood's golden age.
American Factory (2019)
This documentary, which has been chosen for Netflix, is the first of Barack and Michelle Obama's Higher Ground Productions team. Fuyao, a Chinese business that built a factory in Ohio and has now been closed, tells the story. This is why this film is not mandatory.
Filthy Rich, Jeffrey Epstein (2020)
By this point, we all have a grasp of Jeffrey Epstein's story, but Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich is a great person who excels in providing information to those who suffered his abuse.