Top Documentary Movies


The Top Documentary Movies List is calculated by overall movie ratings and members' "Top Documentary List". Lists are calculated daily.

41. Jodorowsky's Dune

Year of Release: 2013
Overall Rating: 3.3 out of 4 stars
Language: English
Genre: Documentary
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Director: Frank Pavich
Actors: Alejandro Jodorowsky, Michel Seydoux, H.R. Giger, Chris Foss
Plot: Alejandro Jodorowsky is a cult filmmaker best known for his surrealistic tales El Topo, The Holy Mountain and Santa Sangre. Yet in the mid 1970s, he attempted to create his masterpiece - adapting Frank Herbert's 1965 novel, Dune, to the big screen. Spending $2 million to convince the likes of artist H.R. Giger, Salvador Dali, actor Orson Welles and musician Mick Jagger and to help in creating his epic, he failed to convince investors (and a purported hours long running time didn't help) and in the end was a failed vision. But the director still has his Dune bible - and we get a glimpse of what could have been.

42. Blackfish

Year of Release: 2013
Overall Rating: 3.2 out of 4 stars
Language: English
Genre: Documentary
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Director: Gabriela Cowperthwaite
Actors: Tilikum, Kim Ashdown, Samantha Berg, Dawn Brancheau
Plot: Documentary that explores the nature of keeping wild animals captive with the story of Tilikum - a killer whale responsible for three deaths, including that of a top whale trainer.

43. When The Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts

Year of Release: 2006
Overall Rating: 3.3 out of 4 stars
Language: English
Genre: Documentary
MPAA Rating: NR
Director: Spike Lee
Actors: Spike Lee, Al Sharpton, Sean Penn, Jay Asevedo
Plot: Spike Lee presents an unflinching, artistic, gritty look at the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the U.S. government's response.

44. Gore Vidal: The United States of Amnesia

Year of Release: 2013
Overall Rating: 3.5 out of 4 stars
Language: English
Genre: Documentary/Biography
MPAA Rating: NR
Director: Nicholas D. Wrathall
Actors: Gore Vidal, Joanne Woodward, Christopher Hitchens, David Mamet

45. Kedi

Year of Release: 2017
Overall Rating: 3.5 out of 4 stars
Language: Turkish
Genre: Documentary
MPAA Rating: NR
Director: Ceyda Torun
Actors: Bülent Üstün
Plot: A journey through an ancient city and the unique citizens who inhabit it as seen through the eyes of a wily and beloved feline.

46. The Fog of War

Year of Release: 2003
Overall Rating: 3.0 out of 4 stars
Language: English
Genre: Documentary
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Director: Errol Morris
Actors: Robert McNamara

47. Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory

Year of Release: 2011
Overall Rating: 3.1 out of 4 stars
Language: English
Genre: Documentary
MPAA Rating: NR
Director: Joe Berlinger, Bruce Sinofsky
Actors: Jason Baldwin, Damien Wayne Echols, Jessie Miskelly
Plot: The third documentary about the "West Memphis Three" following Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills and Paradise Lost 2: Revelations. Filmmakers Joe Berlinger, Bruce Sinofsky continue to fight for the releases of Damien Echols, Jessie Misskelly, and Jason Baldwin as new DNA evidence surfaces that could clear their names once and for all.

48. George Stevens: A Filmmaker's Journey

Year of Release: 1985
Overall Rating: 3.3 out of 4 stars
Language: English
Genre: Documentary/Biography
Director: George Stevens Jr.
Actors: George Stevens Jr., George Stevens, Katharine Hepburn, Douglas Fairbanks Jr.

49. Lost Soul: The Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley's Island of Dr. Moreau

Year of Release: 2014
Overall Rating: 3.3 out of 4 stars
Language: English
Genre: Documentary
MPAA Rating: NR
Director: David Gregory
Actors: Richard Stanley, Kier-La Janisse, Michael Gingold, Graham Humphreys

50. Life, Animated

Year of Release: 2016
Overall Rating: 3.3 out of 4 stars
Language: English
Genre: Documentary/Animation
MPAA Rating: PG
Director: Roger Ross Williams
Actors: Owen Suskind, Ron Suskind

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