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Recommended Documentaries

This is a topic where you can say which documentary has really impressed you, and why people should see it. Can be a recent one or an all-time favourite. Can't be your own though, sorry...

We also have a Documentary Films topic for our Professionals where the debate is private and possibly more controversial. This topic here is for recommendations to the documentary-interested public.

This topic is for praising the work of others, not your own. If you want to beat the drum for your own documentary, please don't do it here. Enthusiasts use our Public Classifieds, and Professionals have their own Shameless Self-Promotion topic.

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Jason Osder
Thu 2 Jun 2011Link


Barbara Rick
Sun 12 Jun 2011Link

Thoroughly enjoyed Page One. Caught it recently at a special screening at a brunch event for Film Forum supporters. David Carr and Brian Stelter are brilliant. As a lifelong journalist, it thrilled me. Two of my favorite docs this year take place behind-the-scenes at The Times– this one and Bill Cunningham NY.

Danielle Beverly
Sun 12 Jun 2011Link

Barbara, the trailer reads like a fiction. The soundbites are phenomenal.

Barbara Rick
Sun 12 Jun 2011Link

Loved it, Danielle.

Kurt Engfehr
Tue 14 Jun 2011Link

here's a newfangled 'interactive documentary' supported by our good friends from the north, the NFB. it's a look at a small town in Canada that was closed!

it's part photo album, documentary and oral history. real interesting stuff.

Marth Christensen
Tue 14 Jun 2011Link

That is FASCINATING! Thanks.

Scheffee Wilson
Tue 14 Jun 2011Link

1. Capitalism: A Love Story

Kate Imbach
Thu 16 Jun 2011Link

In reply to Kurt Engfehr's post on Tue 14 Jun 2011 :

how interesting! thanks for the rec!

Reid B. Kimball
Sat 18 Jun 2011Link

Hi everyone,

Not sure if I should ask here or somewhere else. I'm wondering if anyone knows of a "first person" documentary film? Meaning, the film is about a person but it is filmed from their perspective. For example, I'm the director, the film is about my story and I film everything from my view.

Edited Sat 18 Jun 2011 by Reid B. Kimball

Ramona Diaz
Sat 18 Jun 2011Link

There's a whole slew but a seminal work in this genre is Ross McElwee's Sherman's March.

Eliaichi Kimaro
Sun 19 Jun 2011Link

In reply to Reid B. Kimball's post on Sat 18 Jun 2011 :
Hi Reid, I know this isn't the place for self-promo, but in answer to your question, my film A Lot Like You is a first person doc...

Reid B. Kimball
Sun 19 Jun 2011Link

Yay! Thank you Ramona and Eliaichi, I will check both of these out today.

Ben Kempas
Sun 19 Jun 2011Link

Well, most of the films directed by D-Word founder Doug Block are first-person docs...

Jo-Anne Velin
Mon 20 Jun 2011Link

In reply to Reid B. Kimball's post on Sun 19 Jun 2011 :


Nick Verbitsky
Wed 6 Jul 2011Link

My pick would be AMERICAN HARDCORE.

As a lifelong music freak (and former employee of WNEW-FM NYC, the world's GREATEST rock station ever) it moved me in ways no other film has. I always thought punk rock was noise, but this film really got me into the artistry of it, the characters involved, and after I watched it, I bought more songs on iTunes than I had in a long time by bands I never knew much about-Bad Brains, Dead Boys, Minor Threat, etc.

Most touching of all was the story of how Johnny Ramone stole Joey's girlfriend and married her-it was a scar the shy/sociall awkward Joey carried with him until he died-really showed that these artists are dimensional and above all, very human. I couldn't recommend this film more highly.....

John Gyovai
Tue 12 Jul 2011Link

Got to give it up to just a few of my favorite films with the word "Devil" in the title:

John Gyovai
Tue 12 Jul 2011Link

Part II: The Devil's Miner

Pliers Sanderson
Wed 20 Jul 2011Link

I have just watched Danfung Dennis's 'Hell and BAck Again' – WOW! It raises the bar for camera and editing. In the recent glut of war docs this one really holds its own.

Sam Gaty
Thu 21 Jul 2011Link

I'll re-rec IRAQ IN FRAGMENTS and add a few others to the list:

F IS FOR FAKE (Orson Wells)
MONDO VINO (Jonathan Nossiter)
GASLAND (Josh Fox)
THE UP SERIES (Michael Apted)

kesang choki
Wed 31 Aug 2011Link

Hi Reid! i would recommend, "The Gleaners and I" and the "Queen and I"In reply to Reid B. Kimball's post on Sat 18 Jun 2011 :

John Burgan
Wed 31 Aug 2011Link

Alternative list compiled by London doc producer John Wyver to the current Morgan Spurlock/Current TV series: 50 (more) docs before you die

Michael B. McGee
Wed 14 Sep 2011Link

In reply to Scheffee Wilson's post on Tue 14 Jun 2011 :

+1 on Capitalsim: A Love Story

unbelievably heartbreaking.

Ben Kempas
Sun 18 Sep 2011Link

D-Worders may remember that we did a special topic two years ago on the controversy surrounding the release of Fredrik Gertten's film, BANANAS!*.

For those of you who (like me) didn't have a chance to see the film on the festival circuit, you can now watch it on Distrify – and finally make up your own minds.

Highly recommended!

Jo-Anne Velin
Mon 19 Sep 2011Link

Congratulations to distrify for having Bananas on the platform (which is looking terrific, by the way – I always loved the triangles as their logo)!

Ben Kempas
Mon 19 Sep 2011Link

It's more of a matter of Dogwoof partnering with Distrify for their entire online distribution. Fredrik didn't even know BANANAS!* was up there. :-)

I#m just wondering if the above rental works anywhere or whether it's been geo-blocked for UK availability only?

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