Favorite Things, Uncategorized, Writing

My Favorite Documentaries

Most of you know how much I like a good documentary. In fact, I would say it is my favorite type of movie. I appreciate learning about others, I enjoy “connecting” with real people, and I prefer watching movies that educate me about human beings and their experiences. I don’t think I’m alone in feeling this way, so I decided to share some of my favorite documentaries with you.

Interestingly, three days after deciding to write this post, I discovered through my husband that a John Candy documentary is in the works. You may read more about it here. I absolutely can not wait for that to come out.

Here are some of my favorite documentaries so far.

*in no particular order


Allen v. Farrow

Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things

Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father

My Octopus Teacher


Dick Johnson is Dead

Knock Down the House


The Social Dilemma

The Last Blockbuster

A Secret Love


Waiting for Superman

I Am Greta

This Changes Everything


A Most Beautiful Thing

Robin’s Wish

Most Likely to Succeed


The Genius of Marian



Challenger: The Final Flight

Lenox Hill

American Factory

Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

Paul Williams Still Alive


Surviving Death

I’ll Be Me

End Game

Alive Inside

Mission: Joy

I’m adding a few that I forgot about after publishing. Menopausal brain fog is real, my friends. Thank you to everyone who reminded me.

The Last Dance

The Staircase

The Volcano: Rescue from Whakaari

The Keepers


Captive Audience: A Real American Horror Story

I would love to hear your favorites in the comments.

47 thoughts on “My Favorite Documentaries”

  1. I can’t say I watch many documentaries, probably for the same reason I don’t watch movies. It’s a long time for me to sit. But I did watch the Mr. Rogers one in your list and it was wonderful. I believe I’ve watched a few on cults, like Scientology, Jim Jones, and Waco. I also love reading books on cults. They fascinate me. I’m currently reading Bad Mormon, and though I thought I knew everything about the LDS Church, I was not aware of the full extent of the bizarre rituals performed inside the temples.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes, I am. I’m almost finished. Parts of it make no sense to me. It’s like she omitted things. She goes from being head over heels in love with her fiancé to not getting along with him on the honeymoon (not explained) and then having 3 kids and staying married for 10 years. She complained about him always stopping over to see the kids after they separated, but then acts as though he had no interest in the kids. She mentions one short conversation with her brother about her divorce but never mentions any other family member’s reaction, after being so fearful of a Mormon divorce. It’s like that through the entire book.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t watch many documentaries, though as you know, I also don’t watch much TV in general. The last good (to me) documentary I watched was Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. One of my favourites is “Killing Us Softly,” and the follow-up, “Still Killing Us Softly.” It’s about eating disorders, women, advertising, and modern life. They’re very good. I also adore “Manufacturing Consent” by Noam Chomsky. Recently, I watched “The Volcano: Rescue From Whakaari” on Netflix. It’s about the 2019 volcanic eruption in NZ. I strongly recommend it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Those will definitely be added to my list. Thank you!

      We recently saw The Volcano and loved it. I wrote this post in November and never edited it to include my most recent watches. So, after publishing, I’ll add that to the list. SO MANY EXCELLENT DOCUMENTARIES.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Kari, this is yet another thing you and I have in common. We share the passion for documentaries!!!! Documentaries are truly my favorite film gene. I watch them a lot!

    And would believe that I’ve seen several on your list (Allen v. Farrow, Won’t You Be My Neighbor? and Robin’s Wish)

    Okay, here are the last five I’ve watched and really enjoyed:

    *Larger Than Life: The Kevyn Aucoin Story (about the amazing makeup artist, Kevyn Aucoin)

    *Ingrid Bergman: In Her Own Words (about actress, Ingrid Bergman)

    *Halston 2019 (about designer, Halston)

    *Olympia (about actress, Olympia Dukakis)

    *The Staircase (about the murder trial of Michael Peterson) *I also watched the biopic of this story with Colin Firth as Michael with the same title. EXCELLENT!

    LOVED this post, my friend! Looking forward to watching more on your list. Thanks!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m so glad we have this in common!

      All of these will be added to my list!

      OMG, we watched The Staircase, and I can’t believe I forgot to include it. It was AMAZING. I hate to say that about a murder, but it kept us engrossed and we looked forward to watching it every night. So I’m editing my post because I would also highly recommend that one. We completely forgot about the movie! So now we have something else to watch!


  5. I so love a good documentary. I’m excited to check out the ones on your list. Of the ones you’ve shared here, I think I’ve seen Blackfish, Social Dilema, Blockbuster, and Minimalism. The kids were like WHAT’S BLOCKBUSTER. I was like: SIT DOWN AND WATCH THIS. HOW CAN YOU NOT KNOW? It was fun. We ended up sharing lots of stories about how we used to switch off on Saturday nights: you run to Blockbuster, I’ll start baths.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Oooh!! A few of our faves overlap and a few I haven’t heard of before! I can’t wait to look up Allen v Farrow. I liked Inside the Mind of a Cat, Bikram, 13th (this was AMAZING). I also second The Last Dance

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I really enjoyed Won’t You Be My Neighbor and The Social Dilemma. We used to watch a lot of documentaries while homeschooling and my boys favorites were nature documentaries. I can tell you a LOT of useless nature facts about obscure animals most people don’t even know exist.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. American Movie
    The Celluloid Closet
    Fast Cheap & Out of Control
    Gimmee Shelter
    The Heart of Darkness
    Imagine: John Lennon
    Let it be
    Mondo New York
    Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hill
    The Punk Singer: The Kathleen Hanna Story
    Scared Straight
    The Up Series

    Liked by 1 person

  9. The Octopus Teacher was excellent. I saw quite a few that you mentioned here. Allen v. Farrow, The Staircase. All good. Going to check out some you have that look interesting to me.
    One that I can think of that I watched but you didn’t list was on HBO: Phoenix Rising. It’s Evan Rachel Woods’s account of her abuse by Marilyn Manson. IT’s crazy what she went through with that asshat.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. A good documentary is the *best*. I recently watched Won’t You Be My Neighbor – bawled my eyes out and just generally felt all the feelings!

    As for suggestions… Have you seen Buck (2011) about horse trainer Buck Brannaman? It has been several years since I saw it but I think (hope?) it will have aged well. It is about horses and a horse trainer so…. *heart eyes* ponieeesss!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I cried my eyes out too! A lot of documentaries make me do that. Maybe that’s why I like them so much: they’re very therapeutic.

      I haven’t seen that one! I’ll definitely add it to my list of must-see documentaries. Anything related to horses is high on our list. ❤️


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s