The 100 Greatest Documentaries

picture of cave art from cave of forgotten dreams

What makes a good documentary film? Here at List Muse we value the element of discovery, the aesthetic, the story, and the theme. The following films have each been chosen for their mixture of these qualities. The top documentaries are those that not only teach us the most about the world we share, but that do so in a compelling fashion: they educate and evoke.

The 100 Greatest Documentaries list contains a mixture of natural world, science, history, politics, environmental, current affairs, biography, and artistic films.

1. Cave of Forgotten Dreams

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Cave of Forgotten Dreams is a 2010 3D documentary film by Werner Herzog, about the Chauvet Cave, a cavern in southern France that contains the oldest human-painted images yet discovered, some as old as ... More »

Cave of Forgotten Dreams
Searching for Sugar Man

2. Searching for Sugar Man

SEARCHING FOR SUGAR MAN tells the incredible true story of Rodriguez, the greatest ‘70s rock icon who never was. After being discovered in a Detroit bar, Rodriguez’s sound struck 2 renowned producers and they signed a recording deal. But when the album bombed, the singer disappeared into ... More »

3. The People Speak

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The People Speak is a 2009 American documentary feature film that uses dramatic and musical performances of the letters, diaries, and speeches of everyday Americans. The film gives voice to those who, by insisting ... More »

The People Speak
Planet Earth

4. Planet Earth

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Planet Earth is a 2006 television series produced by the BBC Natural History Unit. Five years in the making, it was the most expensive nature documentary series ever commissioned by the BBC, and also ... More »

5. Inside Job

From Academy Award®-nominated filmmaker, Charles Ferguson (NO END IN SIGHT), comes INSIDE JOB, the first film to expose the shocking truth behind the economic crisis of 2008. The global financial meltdown, at a cost of over $20 trillion, resulted in millions of people losing their homes and jobs. ... More »

Inside Job
The Fog of War

6. The Fog of War

Academy Award(r)-winner for Best Documentary Feature, THE FOG OF WAR is the story of America as seen through the eyes of the former Secretary of Defense, under President Kennedy and President Johnson, Robert S. McNamara. McNamara was one of the most controversial and influential political figures ofthe ... More »

7. Winter Soldier

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January 31, 1971. More than 125 Vietnam veterans, representing every major combat unit to see action, gathered in Detroit to heal a nation...and themselves. They risked everything to talk about the atrocities they had committed or witnessed in the presenc More »

Winter Soldier
Wonders of the Solar System

8. Wonders of the Solar System

Experience the extraordinary…in our planet’s own backyard. Wonders explores some of the most amazing features of our very own solar system – how the forces of nature carved out beauty and order from the chaos of space; how our home planet doesn’t sit in magnificent isolation but is ... More »

9. Dirty Wars

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It s the dirty little secret of the War on Terror: all bets are off, and almost anything goes. We have fundamentally changed the rules of the game and the rules of engagement. Today drone strikes, night raids, and U.S. government condoned torture occur in corners across the ... More »

Dirty Wars
Hoop Dreams

10. Hoop Dreams

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Two ordinary inner-city kids dare to dream the impossible - professional basketball glory - in this epic chronicle of hope and faith. Filmed over a five-year period, Hoop Dreams follows young Arthur Agee and William Gates as they navigate the complex, competitive world of scholastic athletics while striving ... More »

11. The Corporation

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This DVD charts the specatcular rise of the corporation as a dramatic, pervasive presence in our everyday live. With a deft mix of humor, visual panache, and forthright seriousness, filmmakers Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbott and writer Joel Bakan have fa More »

The Corporation
White Light / Black Rain: The Destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

12. White Light / Black Rain: The Destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

White Light/Black Rain: The Destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki is an HBO documentary film that was directed and produced by Steven Okazaki and was released on August 6, 2007 on HBO, marking the 62nd anniversary of the first atomic bombing. The film features interviews with fourteen Japanese survivors ... More »

13. Egalite for All: Toussaint Louverture and the Haitian Revolution

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The Haitian Revolution represents the only successful slave revolution in history; it created the world's first Black republic --- traumatizing Southern planters, inspiring U.S. Blacks, and invigorating anti-slavery activist world-wide. At the forefront of the rebellion was General Toussaint Louverture, an ex-slave whose genius was admired by allies ... More »

Egalite for All: Toussaint Louverture and the Haitian Revolution
Hearts and Minds

14. Hearts and Minds

A courageous and startling film, Peter Davis' landmark documentary Hearts and Minds unflinchingly confronts the United States' involvement in Vietnam. Using a wealth of sources-from interviews to newsreels to documentary footage of the conflict at home and abroad-Davis constructs a powerfully affecting portrait of the disastrous effects of ... More »

15. Life

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Four years in the making, filmed over 3000 days, across every continentand in every habitat, Life is the latest wildlife blockbuster from the BBC’s award-winning Natural History Unit, the producers of Planet Earth and The Blue Planet. Packed with excitement, revelation, entertainment, and stunning screen firsts, this breathtaking ... More »

Manufacturing Consent - Noam Chomsky and the Media

16. Manufacturing Consent - Noam Chomsky and the Media

Funny, provocative and surprisingly accessible, MANUFACTURING CONSENT explores the political life and ideas of world-renowned linguist, intellectual and political activist Noam Chomsky. Through a dynamic collage of biography, archival gems, imaginative graphics and outrageous illustrations, Mark Achbar and Peter Wintonick's award-winning documentary highlights Chomsky's probing analysis of mass ... More »

17. Hearts of Darkness

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Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse is an engrossing, unwavering look back at Francis Ford Coppola’s chaotic, catastrophe-plagued Vietnam production, Apocalypse Now. Filled with juicy gossip and a wonderful behind-the-scenes look at the stressful world of moviemaking, the documentary mixes on-location home movies shot in the Philippines by ... More »

Hearts of Darkness
The Act of Killing

18. The Act of Killing

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This chilling and inventive documentary, executive-produced by Errol Morris (The Fog of War) and Werner Herzog (Grizzly Man), examines a country where death squad leaders are celebrated as heroes, and are challenged to reenact their real-life mass killings in the style of the American movies they love. The ... More »

19. Harlan County U.S.A.

This film documents the coal miners' strike against the Brookside Mine of the Eastover Mining Company in Harlan County, Kentucky in June, 1973. Eastovers refusal to sign a contract (when the miners joined with the United Mine Workers of America) led to the strike, which lasted more than ... More »

Harlan County U.S.A.
Bob Dylan: Don't Look Back

20. Bob Dylan: Don't Look Back

BOB DYLAN: DONT LOOK BACK--65 TOUR DELUXE EDITION is the ultimate look at Bob Dylan's concert tour of England in the spring of 1965--one of the most intimate profiles of an artist ever put to film. This definitive set includes the remastered classic film by D.A. Pennebaker, a ... More »

21. The Trouble With Tolstoy

Alan Yentob takes an epic train ride through Leo Tolstoy s Russia, examining how Russia s great novelist became her great troublemaker. Guided by the writer s astonishingly honest and confessional diaries, Yentob travels through Tolstoy s Russia looking at the life, work and legacy of the author ... More »

The Trouble With Tolstoy
Guns, Germs, and Steel

22. Guns, Germs, and Steel

Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book and national best seller, Guns, Germs, and Steel is an epic detective story that offers a gripping expose on why the world is so unequal. Professor Jared Diamond traveled the globe for over 30 years trying to answer the biggest question of ... More »

23. The Power of Nightmares

The Power of Nightmares, subtitled The Rise of the Politics of Fear, is a BBC documentary film series, written and produced by Adam Curtis. Its three one-hour parts consist mostly of a montage of ... More »

The Power of Nightmares

24. Sicko

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Following on the heels of his Palm d'Or winning Fahrenheit 9/11 and his Oscar winning film Bowling for Columbine, acclaimed filmmaker Michael Moore's new documentary sets out to investigate the American healthcare system. Sticking to his tried-and-true one-man approach, Moore sheds light on the complicated medical affairs of ... More »

25. The Pervert's Guide to Cinema

THE PERVERT'S GUIDE TO CINEMA takes the viewer on an exhilarating ride through some of the greatest movies ever made. Serving as presenter and guide is the charismatic Slavoj Zizek, the Slovenian philosopher and psychoanalyst. With his engaging and passionate approach to thinking, Zizek delves into the hidden ... More »

The Pervert's Guide to Cinema
49 Up

26. 49 Up

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Starting in 1964 with Seven Up, The UP Series has explored this Jesuit maxim. The original concept was to interview 14 children from diverse backgrounds from all over England, asking them about their lives and their dreams for the future. Every seven years, renowned director Michael Apted, a ... More »

27. The Thin Blue Line

Academy AwardÂ(r)-winner* Errol Morris broke new ground with the "riveting" (LA Weekly) film that dramatically reenacts the crime scene and investigation of a police officer's murder in Dallas. So powerful and convincing that it helped free an innocent man from prison, The Thin Blue Line is "one of ... More »

The Thin Blue Line
Grizzly Man

28. Grizzly Man

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In this mesmerizing new film, acclaimed director Werner Herzog explores the life and death of amateur grizzly bear expert and wildlife preservationist Timothy Treadwell, who lived unarmed among grizzlies for 13 summers. More »

29. Eyes on the Prize

Eyes on the Prize tells the definitive story of the civil rights era from the point of view of the ordinary men and women whose extraordinary actions launched a movement that changed the fabric of American life, and embodied a struggle whose reverberations continue to be felt today. ... More »

Eyes on the Prize
History of the World

30. History of the World

Andrew Marr sets off on an epic journey through the explosive events, changes, conflicts and triumphs that shaped 70,000 years of human history. From our earliest beginnings in Africa, Marr traces the story of our nomadic ancestors as they spread out around the world and settled down to ... More »

31. A Grin Without a Cat

A GRIN WITHOUT A CAT (its title refers to Lewis Carroll's Cheshire Cat) is Marker's magnum opus: a three-hour overview of the worldwide political upheavals during the Sixties and Seventies. Marker interweaves footage from the Vietnam War and the antiwar protests in the U.S., May ... More »

A Grin Without a Cat
End of Suburbia

32. End of Suburbia

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The End of Suburbia: Oil Depletion and the Collapse of The American Dream is a 2004 documentary film concerning peak oil and its implications for the suburban lifestyle, written and directed by Toronto-based filmmaker ... More »

33. The Invisible War

From Oscar® and Emmy®-nominated filmmaker Kirby Dick (This Film Is Not Yet Rated; Twist of Faith) comes THE INVISIBLE WAR, a groundbreaking investigative documentary about one of America's most shameful and best-kept secrets: the epidemic of rape within the U.S. military. The film paints a startling picture of ... More »

The Invisible War
Wild China

34. Wild China

Wild China is a six-part nature documentary series on the natural history of China, co-produced by the BBC Natural History Unit and China Central Television (CCTV) and filmed entirely in high-definition (HD). It was screened in the UK ... More »

35. In the Year of the Pig

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Produced at the height of the Vietnam War, Emile de Antonio’s Oscar®-nominated 1968 documentary chronicles the war’s historical roots. With palpable outrage, De Antonio (Point of Order, Underground) assembles period interviews with journalists, politicians, and key military personnel and international newsreel and archival footage to create a scathing ... More »

In the Year of the Pig
Walking With Dinosaurs

36. Walking With Dinosaurs

Walking with Dinosaurs is a six-part documentary television miniseries that was produced by BBC, narrated by Kenneth Branagh, and first aired in the United Kingdom, in 1999. The series was subsequently aired in North America on the Discovery Channel in 2000, with Branagh's voice replaced with that of ... More »

37. Taxi to the Dark Side

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Taxi to the Dark Side is a 2007 documentary film directed by American filmmaker Alex Gibney, and produced by Eva Orner and Susannah Shipman, which won the 2007 Academy Award for Best ... More »

Taxi to the Dark Side
Dark Days

38. Dark Days

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For years, a homeless community took root in a train tunnel beneath New York City, braving dangerous conditions and perpetual night. Dark Days explores this surprisingly domestic subterranean world, unearthing a way of life unimaginable to those above. Through stories simultaneously heartbreaking, hilarious, intimate, and off the ... More »

39. 5 Broken Cameras

An extraordinary work of both cinematic and political activism, 5 Broken Cameras is a deeply personal, first-hand account of non-violent resistance in Bil'in, a West Bank village threatened by encroaching Israeli settlements. Shot almost entirely by Palestinian farmer Emad Burnat, who bought his first camera in 2005 to ... More »

5 Broken Cameras
Frozen Planet

40. Frozen Planet

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From the Emmy-winning team behind Planet Earth and The Blue Planet comes Frozen Planet, the epic tale of two disappearing wildernesses. The Arctic and Antarctic remain the greatest wildernesses on Earth. The scale and beauty of the scenery and the sheer power of the elements are unmatched ... More »

41. The Story of Science

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The Story of Science: Power, Proof and Passion is a 2010 BBC documentary on the history of science presented by Michael J. Mosley. More »

The Story of Science
The Spanish Earth

42. The Spanish Earth

The Spanish Earth (1937) is a propaganda film made during the Spanish Civil War in support of the democratically elected Republicans, whose forces included a wide range of the political left, communists, socialists, anarchists, centrists, and ... More »

43. The Sorrow and the Pity

The Sorrow and the Pity (French: Le chagrin et la pitié) is a two-part 1969 documentary film by Marcel Ophüls about the French Resistance and collaboration between the Vichy government and Nazi ... More »

The Sorrow and the Pity
Life and Debt

44. Life and Debt

Set to a beguiling reggae beat, Life and Debt takes as its subject Jamaica's economic decline in the 20th century. The story has reverberations in the plight of other third-world nations blindsided by globalization, like Ghana and Haiti. After England granted Jamaica independence in 1962, the ... More »

45. Lord of the Ants

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Every so often a giant emerges on the stage of science, someone who transcends the narrow boundaries of a particular line of research and alters our perspective on the world. E.O. Wilson is such a man. NOVA's Lord of the Ants profiles this soft-spoken Southerner renowned for his ... More »

Lord of the Ants
The Civil War

46. The Civil War

Ken Burns' Emmy Award-winning documentary brings to life America's most destructive - and defining - conflict. The Civil War is the saga of celebrated generals and ordinary soldiers, a heroic and transcendent president and a country that had to divide itself in two in order to become one. ... More »

47. Sans Soleil

One of the most influential, radical science-fiction films ever made and a mind-bending free-form travelogue, La jetée (The Jetty) and Sans soleil (Sunless) couldn’t seem more different—yet they’re the twin pillars of one of the most daring and uncompromising careers in cinema history. Chris Marker, filmmaker, poet, novelist, ... More »

Sans Soleil
Grey Gardens

48. Grey Gardens

Meet Big and Little Edie Beale-high society dropouts, mother and daughter, reclusive cousins of Jackie O.-thriving together amid the decay and disorder of their ramshackle East Hampton mansion. Five years after Gimme Shelter, the Maysles unveiled this impossibly intimate portrait of the unexpected, an eerie echo of the ... More »

49. War Made Easy

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Narrated by Sean Penn and based on the work of media critic and best-selling author Norman Solomon, who traveled with Penn to Baghdad just before the war to call attention to the dangers of a U.S. invasion, WAR MADE EASY reaches into the Orwellian memory hole to expose ... More »

War Made Easy
When the Moors Ruled in Europe

50. When the Moors Ruled in Europe

How Islamic civilization tamed Western Europe "Inspiring" --The Observer (U.K.) Join British historian Bettany Hughes as she examines a long-buried chapter of European history--the rise and fall of Islamic culture in what is now Spain and Portugal. Although generations of Spanish rulers have tried to expunge this era ... More »

51. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room

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Narrated by Peter Coyote. How can America's 7th largest corporation crumble into dust? This shameful expos+ª rips open the nation's darkest corporate scandal, one that left thousands of investors and dedicated employess with virtually nothing as a tiny handful of top execs walked away with billions. This inside ... More »

Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
The War on Democracy

52. The War on Democracy

The War on Democracy demonstrates the brutal reality of the America's notion of 'spreading democracy'; that, in fact, America is actually conducting a war on democracy, and that true popular democracy is now more likely to be found among the poorest of Latin America whose grassroots movements are ... More »

53. Black Gold

Black Gold is a 2006 documentary film. The story follows the efforts of an Ethiopian Coffee Union manager as he travels the world to obtain a better price for his workers' coffee beans. The film ... More »

Black Gold
We Shall Remain: America Through Native Eyes

54. We Shall Remain: America Through Native Eyes

They were charismatic and forward thinking, imaginative and courageous, compassionate and resolute, and, at times, arrogant, vengeful, and reckless. For hundreds of years, Native American leaders from Massasoit, Tecumseh, and Tenskwatawa, to Major Ridge, Geronimo,and Fools Crow, valiantly resisted expulsion from their lands and fought the extinction of ... More »

55. The Gleaners and I

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Agnès Varda, Grande Dame of the French New Wave, has made 2001's most acclaimed non-fiction film-a self-described "wandering-road documentary." Beginning with the famous Jean-François Millet painting of women gathering wheat left over from a harvest, she focuses her ever-seeking eye on gleaners: those who scour already-reaped fields for ... More »

The Gleaners and I
The Story of Maths

56. The Story of Maths

How numbers explain our universe and reveal unseen worlds Math made accessible, engaging, and relevant Mathematics forms the foundation for nearly everything we do--from finance to physics, and architecture to astronomy. Math not only describes our world, but also reveals its beauty and mystery. Join Marcus du Sautoy ... More »

57. Berkeley in the Sixties

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Berkeley in the Sixties is a 1990 documentary film by Mark Kitchell. The film highlights the origins of the Free Speech Movement beginning with the May 1960 House Un-American Activities Committee hearings at San ... More »

Berkeley in the Sixties
Baghdad ER

58. Baghdad ER

Produced and directed by 11-time Emmy Award-winner Jon Alpert, this 64-minute verite documentary takes an unforgettable look inside the 86th Combat Support Hospital (CSH), the U.S. Army's premier medical facility in Iraq and former site of one of Saddam Hussein's elite medical facilities. Shot over two months in ... More »

59. The Take

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{WINNER! Best Documentary, 2005 Cleveland International Film Festival}{WINNER! Grand Jury Prize, 2004 AFI Los Angeles International Film Festival}{WINNER! Best Justice and Human Rights Film, 2004 Vermont International Film Festival}In the wake of Argentina's spectacular economic collapse, Latin America's most prosperous middle class finds itself in a ghost town ... More »

The Take
Palestine is Still the Issue

60. Palestine is Still the Issue

In 1977, the award-winning journalist and filmmaker, John Pilger, made a documentary called Palestine Is Still The Issue. He told how almost a million Palestinians had been forced off their land in 1948, and again in 1967. In this in-depth documentary, he has returned to the West Bank ... More »

61. Why We Fight

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Grand Jury Prize winner at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival, WHY WE FIGHT is an unflinching look at the anatomy of American war-making. Granted unparalleled Pentagon access, the film launches a nonpartisan inquiry into the forces -- political, economic, and ideological -- that drive America to fight. ... More »

Why We Fight
Ancient Worlds

62. Ancient Worlds

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Ancient Worlds is a six-part odyssey from the first cities of Mesopotamia to the Christianisation of the Roman Empire with archaeologist and historian Richard Miles at the helm. The series tells the story of what Richard argues is mankind's greatest achievement - civilisation. The series offers an epic ... More »

63. Meeting Resistance

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{WINNER! Best documentary, 2008 MVV Festival}{WINNER! Golden Award, 2007 Al Jazeera Int'l Documentary Film Festival}{WINNER! Best of the West, 2007 Hawaii Int'l Film Festival}{WINNER! Best Documentary: Courage in Filmmaking award, Women Film Critics Circle Awards 2007}Meeting Resistance is a daring, eye-opening film that raises the veil of anonymity ... More »

Meeting Resistance
I, Caesar

64. I, Caesar

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This award-winning series takes a fascinating look at the public and private lives of six key men who ruled the Roman Empire. Starting with Julius Caesar, the series charts the rise and fall of Roman power over 600 years through the lives of six of the most charismatic ... More »

65. Auschwitz: The Nazis and the 'Final Solution'

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This six-part series tells the story of the Auschwitz Death Camp, site of the largest mass murder in the history of the world. Writer Laurence Rees and his team interviewed over 100 eyewitnesses, including former Nazi perpetrators who speak on the record for the first time. Their story ... More »

Auschwitz: The Nazis and the 'Final Solution'

66. Defamation

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Defamation (Hebrew: השמצה‎; translit. Hashmatsa) is a 2009 documentary film by award-winning filmmaker Yoav Shamir. The film examines antisemitism, and in particular the way perceptions of antisemitism affect Israeli and U.S. politics. The film won Best Documentary Feature Film ... More »

67. The Seven Wonders Of The Industrial World

Seven Wonders of the Industrial World is a 7-part British documentary/docudrama television miniseries that originally aired from 4 September 2003 (2003-09-04) to 16 October 2003 (2003-10-16) on BBC. The programme examines seven engineering feats that occurred ... More »

The Seven Wonders Of The Industrial World
Our Brand Is Crisis

68. Our Brand Is Crisis

A Film by Rachel BoyntonFor decades, U.S. strategists-for-hire have been quietly molding the opinions of voters and the messages of candidates in elections from the Middle East to the South American jungle. Our Brand is Crisis follows James Carville, Jeremy Rosner and a team of political consultants as ... More »

69. Occupation 101: Voices of the Silenced Majority

MOVIE SYNOPSIS: A thought-provoking and powerful documentary film on the current and historical root causes of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and US political involvement. Unlike any other film produced on the conflict, 'Occupation 101' explains the complicated reality with precision storytelling through a series of highly stylized visual edits, ... More »

Occupation 101: Voices of the Silenced Majority
The World At War

70. The World At War

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More than 30 years after its initial broadcast, THE WORLD AT WAR remains the definitive visual history of World War II. Narrated by Academy Award winner Laurence Olivier and digitally re-mastered for DVD, this is epic history at its absolute best. Unsurpassed in depth and scope, its 26 ... More »

71. The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil

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When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1990, Cuba’s economy went into a tailspin. With imports of oil cut by more than half and food imports cut by 80 percent, people were desperate. This fascinating and empowering film shows how communities pulled together, created solutions, and ultimately thrived in ... More »

The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil

72. Civilisation

Civilisation—in full, Civilisation: A Personal View by Kenneth Clark—is a television documentary series outlining the history of Western art, architecture and philosophy since the Dark Ages. The series was produced by the BBC and aired in ... More »

73. Waste Land

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Filmed over nearly three years, WASTE LAND follows renowned artist Vik Muniz as he journeys from his home base in Brooklyn to his native Brazil and the world's largest garbage dump, Jardim Gramacho, located on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. There he photographs an eclectic band of ... More »

Waste Land
The Battle of Chile

74. The Battle of Chile

On September 11, 1973, President Salvador Allende's democratically elected Chilean government was overthrown in a bloody coup by General Augusto Pinochet's army. Patricio Guzmán and five colleagues had been filming the political developments in Chile throughout the nine months leading up to that day. The bombing of ... More »

75. Salesman

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A landmark documentary, "Salesman" captures in vivid detail the bygone era of the door-to-door salesman. While laboring to sell a gold-embossed version of the Holy Word, Paul Brennan and his colleagues target the beleaguered masses--then face the demand More »

Iraq in Fragments

76. Iraq in Fragments

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An opus in three parts, Iraq In Fragments offers a series of intimate, passionately-felt portraits: A fatherless 11-year-old is apprenticed to the domineering owner of a Baghdad garage; Sadr followers in two Shiite cities rally for regional elections while enforcing Islamic law at the point of a gun; ... More »

77. Shadow Company

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This year thousands of private soldiers will be deployed in conflicts worldwide. These individuals, known as private security contractors, are changing the face of modern warfare. But to those at home, their world and influence remain a mystery. - Who are More »

Shadow Company
Global Warming: The Signs and the Science

78. Global Warming: The Signs and the Science

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This documentary profiles people who are living with the grave consequences of a changing climate, as well as the individuals, communities and scientists inventing new approaches to safeguard our children's future. Filmed across the U.S., Asia and South America, this program brings the reality of climate change to ... More »

79. Food, Inc.

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Food, Inc. lifts the veil on our nation's food industry, exposing how our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, thelivelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment. Food, Inc. reveals ... More »

Food, Inc.
Stephen Hawking's Universe

80. Stephen Hawking's Universe

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Scientist Stephen Hawking's book, A BRIEF HISTORY OF TIME, was an instant best-seller. Hawking's genius fills this six-part series, treating viewers to the latest advances in cosmological thought in down-to-earth Hawking fashion. The series presents an intergalactic detective story, rich with mystery, unexpected twists, and astonishing revelations. ... More »

81. Trials Henry Kissinger

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Did Henry Kissinger sabotage the 1968 Vietnam peace talks for his own political gain? Did he orchestrate the secret bombing of Cambodia without approval from the U.S. Congress? Did he authorize covert operations - involving kidnapping and assassination - More »

Trials Henry Kissinger
The Panama Deception

82. The Panama Deception

A riveting Academy Award-winning documentary, made all the more timely by recent U.S. invasions and the current war on terror, THE PANAMA DECEPTION documents the untold story of the December 1989 U.S. invasion of Panama, the events which led to it, the excessive force used, the ... More »

83. War Dance

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Set in war-raved Northern Uganda, the award-winning WAR DANCE will touch your heart with a real-life story about a group of children whose love of music brings joy, excitement and hope back into their poverty-stricken lives. Three children who have suffered horrific brutalities momentarily forget their struggles as ... More »

War Dance
Hotel Terminus: The Life & Times of Klaus Barbie

84. Hotel Terminus: The Life & Times of Klaus Barbie

From Marcel Ophuls comes this brilliant examination of the Nazi officer Klaus Barbie, tracing his life from his time as Gestape chief during World War II to his trial for crimes against humanity. More »

85. The Fourth World War

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What this documentary calls "the Fourth World War" is the struggle of poor and working-class people all over the globe who must battle both large corporations and oppressive governments in order to survive and win basic human rights. Filmed in the streets of Mexico, Korea, Argentina, Palestine, Quebec ... More »

The Fourth World War
The Nazis: A Warning From History

86. The Nazis: A Warning From History

The Nazis: A Warning from History is a 1997 BBC documentary film series that examines Adolf Hitler and the Nazis' rise to power, their zenith, their decline and fall, and the consequences of their reign. It featured archive footage and interviews with eye witnesses and was shown in ... More »

87. The War at Home

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Nominated for an Academy Award and cited by film critic Roger Ebert as one of the twenty greatest political films of all time, THE WAR AT HOME vividly chronicles the anti-war protest movement of the 1960's and 70's. The film provides an illuminating look at the home front ... More »

The War at Home
Dirt! The Movie

88. Dirt! The Movie

DIRT! THE MOVIE is an astonishing, humorous and substantial look at the glorious and unappreciated ground beneath our feet. Dirt feeds us and gives us shelter. Dirt holds and cleans our water. Dirt heals us and makes us beautiful. Dirt regulates the earth s climate. Why do we ... More »

89. The Weather Underground

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Hello. I m going to read a declaration of a state of war...Within the next 14 days we will attack a symbol or institution of American injustice --Bernardine Dohrn Thirty years ago, with these words, a group of young American radicals called The Weathermen announced ... More »

The Weather Underground
Night and Fog

90. Night and Fog

Night and Fog (Enhanced) 1955 Night and Fog is a vivid documentary of the atrocities of the Nazi Concentration Camps. Filmed in 1955 by Director Alain Resnais, this film is one of the first cinematic reflections on the Holocaust's horror. The film combines new ... More »

91. F for Fake

Trickery. Deceit. Magic. In Orson Welles' free-form documentary, the legendary filmmaker (and self-described charlatan) gleefully engages the central preoccupation of his career-the tenuous line between truth and illusion, art and lies. Beginning with portraits of world-renowned art forger Elmyr de Hory and his equally devious biographer, Clifford Irving, ... More »

F for Fake
War Photographer

92. War Photographer

{OSCAR NOMINATION, Best Documentary Feature 2002}{PEABODY AWARD, Georg Foster Peabody Award 2003}{EMMY AWARD NOMINATION, Cinematography 2004}{WINNER of 16 International Awards and Nominations 2002-2004} Nominated for the Academy Award for Best Documentary, WAR PHOTOGRAPHER is the compelling portrait of the man considered the bravest and most important war photographer ... More »

93. China: A Century of Revolution

China: A Century of Revolution is a six-hour tour de force journey through the country's most tumultuous period. First televised on PBS, this award-winning documentary series presents an astonishingly candid view of a once-secret nation with rare archival footage, insightful historical commentary and stunning eyewitness accounts from citizens ... More »

China: A Century of Revolution
Sir! No Sir!

94. Sir! No Sir!

Used Price: 90% Off

Easily the most timely and resonant film about the soldiers on the front lines of antiwar resistance, the award-winning breakout theatrical hit SIR! NO SIR! Tells an almost entirely forgotten story of the military men and women who helped force the U.S. government to end the Vietnam War. ... More »

95. This Is Not a Film

Used Price: 80% Off

This clandestine documentary, shot partially on an iPhone and smuggled into France in a cake for a last-minute submission to Cannes, depicts the day-to-day life of acclaimed director Jafar Panahi (Offside, The Circle) during his house arrest in his Tehran apartment. While appealing his sentence - six ... More »

This Is Not a Film

96. Cosmos

Cosmos: A Personal Voyage is a thirteen-part television series written by Carl Sagan, Ann Druyan, and Steven Soter, with Sagan as presenter. It was executive-produced by Adrian Malone, produced by David Kennard, Geoffrey Haines-Stiles ... More »

97. Plan Colombia: Cashing in on the Drug War Failure

Used Price: 60% Off

A 20-year "war on drugs" in Colombia has been paid for by the U.S. taxpayers. Still more and more drugs and narco-dollars are entering the U.S. every year. Is it a mere failure by Washington? Or is it a smokescreen to secure Colombia's oil & natural resources?System Requirements: ... More »

Plan Colombia: Cashing in on the Drug War Failure
Edward Said: The Last Interview

98. Edward Said: The Last Interview

Born in Jerusalem in 1935 and educated in Egypt and the United States, Edward W. Said was one of the most important literary critics of the late 20th century, and the most prominent spokesperson for the Palestinian cause in the U.S. Borrowing its title from the author's memoir, ... More »

99. Charles Darwin and the Tree of Life

A personal insight, from the world's favourite naturalist, into Darwin's theory of evolution, exploring why it is more important now than ever before. Beautifully shot, this is the start of a series of celebrations of the man behind the theory that changed the world's thinking. But more than ... More »

Charles Darwin and the Tree of Life
An Inconvenient Truth

100. An Inconvenient Truth

Rock-bottom Price: $0.01

Director Davis Guggenheim eloquently weaves the science of global warming with Al Gore's personal history and lifelong commitment to reversing the effects of global climate change in the most talked-about documentary of the year. An audience and critical favorite, An Inconvenient Truth makes the compelling case that ... More »

Author: David Thomson