Netflix: The Best Documentaries to Watch

Netflix documentaries have at all times been one of the best within the enterprise, however with so many various reveals and flicks to select from, it may be laborious to choose. That is why we have made this listing.

We’re beginning with the one of the best new documentaries launched previously 12 months. After that we have divided the rest of our picks by style. We’re up to date for January.

There’s loads to get by means of. Seize some popcorn and pleased watching!

The Best New Documentaries on Netflix



Pepsi, The place’s My Jet? is considered one of my favourite forms of documentary. It is an offbeat documentary on a weird subject with a solid of actually charismatic and insane folks. 

The premise: Within the mid-’90s Pepsi had some extent system designed to encourage folks to drink extra Pepsi. One advert confirmed off a Harrier Jet you can purchase with 7 million of those factors. John Leonard, a 21-year-old enterprise pupil, discovered a loophole that allowed him to purchase factors for 10 cents and tried to power Pepsi to make good on their advertising promise. Chaos ensues.


A captivating documentary on an extremely compelling topic, Pamela, A Love Story is a reevaluation of Pamela Anderson, probably the most compelling celebrities of 90s. Directed by Ryan White it combines diary readings, interviews with Anderson herself alongside time spent with Anderson’s sons to create an unbelievable portrait of a misunderstood human being. Should watch stuff.


Nearly as good as Netflix documentaries are, there’s been an inclination to drag out true crime into these bloated multiepisode sequence. Fortunately Our Father is the other of that. It is a lean, completely executed documentary targeted on Donald Cline, an Indiana fertility physician who used his personal sperm to inseminate a ridiculous variety of girls in opposition to their will.

That is an unbelievable piece, a type of tales that simply escalates and escalates to the purpose the place your jaw drops in disbelief. 



Break Level is the most recent in what seems like a zillion documentaries exploring the day by day drama of sports activities. You understand those I imply — All or Nothing, Drive to Survive. Cricket has one, AFL has one — there’s even a golf one approaching Netflix later this yr.

Break Level focuses on Tennis and — fortunately — picks one of the best athletes to deal with. Watch this for the legendary Nick Kyrgios on the very least.


With the Qatar World Cup actually happening proper now, there could not be a greater time to get caught into FIFA’s murky behind-the-scenes conduct. This can be a actually surprising documentary. Be warned: The allegations listed here are so wild you would possibly even really feel compelled to cease watching the World Cup.


Untold is the most recent from the oldsters behind Wild Wild Nation.

It is a sports activities documentary sequence, with every episode going in-depth on controversial sports activities matters. The first episode focuses on Malice on the Palace, the infamous basketball match the place Ron Artest waded into the group and wailed on followers again in 2004.

Untold is now in its second season, and it’s absolute must-watch stuff. The new episodes are arguably higher than the stellar first season. Possibly one of the best sports activities documentary sequence on Netflix


Preserve Candy: Pray and Obey (2022)

There are quite a lot of Netflix documentaries about cults gone mad, however Preserve Candy: Pray and Obey may be probably the most disturbing of the lot. Not like Homicide Among the many Mormons, which just about handled its subject like a screwball comedy, Preserve Candy is a really grim story a few grim human being in Warren Jeffs. It is a unbelievable documentary, and among the many finest Netflix has produced, nevertheless it comes with a really hefty content material warning.


Keep on Board: The Leo Baker Story (2022)

Skateboarding as a sport makes for an amazing documentary subject. Dogtown and Z Boys, All That Mayhem — completely legendary.  Keep on Board: The Leo Baker Story is one other in a protracted line of classics.

It focuses on Leo Baker, the skater who got here out as trans and had to give up competing on the Olympics within the course of. Wonderful, should watch stuff. 

Michael Putland/Getty Photographs

Jimmy Savile: A British Horror Story (2022)

It is virtually unattainable to overstate how well-known Jimmy Savile was within the UK — notably within the Nineteen Eighties. He was past a family title, in some ways he felt like an eccentric uncle to the nation.

Which made revelations that he had sexually assaulted a whole lot of underage ladies and boys all of the extra horrific. This was an individual the entire of Britain had invited into their properties. 

Jimmy Savile: A British Horror Story does an amazing job of going by means of the archives, combining footage that’s totally weird in hindsight, and including unbelievable interviews with a number of the main gamers in British TV throughout Savile’s heyday. A captivating, albeit disturbing documentary. Be warned: This can be a tough watch. 


Our Nice Nationwide Parks (2022)

Barack Obama is making a beeline for David Attenborough’s job. And we do not hate the concept!

Our Nice Nationwide Parks is a world-class nature documentary within the type of nice BBC reveals like Planet Earth. They’ve nailed it right here. If you happen to’re a fan of that sort of present, that is fully unmissable.


The Most Hated Man on the Web (2022)

Netflix has been on hearth with its documentaries currently, and The Most Hated Man on the Web is the most recent. From the producers of Tinder Swindler and Dont F**okay with Cats, it is a three-part documentary that tells the story of Hunter Moore, probably the most infamous purveyors of “revenge porn.” Positively price watching this one. 


The Lady within the Image (2022)

The Lady within the Image is the most recent true crime documentary from Netflix. It is up there with the service’s very best work.

It seems like, after a interval of needlessly bloated multiepisode documentaries, Netflix has began trimming the fats, releasing lean, extremely compelling documentaries once more. First Preserve Candy: Pray and Obey and Our Father, now this.

The Lady within the Image tells the story of a younger lady, murdered at age 20. To say an excessive amount of would spoil the affect, however it is a layered, brutal documentary with infinite twists. It wants to be seen to be believed.


The Tinder Swindler (2022)

A documentary targeted on Shimon Hayut, aka the “Tinder Swindler,” a conman who used relationship apps to defraud a number of girls throughout Europe to fund a lavish way of life.

A barely completely different subject in contrast to most true crime documentaries on Netflix. Positively price a gander.

True crime


I’ve watched loads of true crime documentaries on Netflix, however nothing has come shut to The Keepers. A staggering story, informed throughout generations, that is respectful of the victims, but compelling all through.

It is a story in regards to the unsolved homicide of Catherine Cesnik, a nun who taught at a Catholic faculty in Baltimore, however The Keepers goes additional than you would possibly anticipate and exposes a possible coverup of intercourse abuse allegations.


The true crime documentary style is totally saturated at this level, however The Staircase stands out. 

Specializing in Michael Peterson and the demise of his spouse Kathleen, The Staircase is greater than only a homicide thriller. It is a drawn-out epic that takes place over literal a long time, a documentary that follows Peterson and examines his each transfer, however by some means nonetheless stays goal. 

It is a good time to watch or revisit this one, since HBO Max has simply launched a drama miniseries primarily based on it.


Home of Secrets and techniques: The Burari Deaths (2021)

One of many newer true crime documentaries from Netflix, it is a good one.

Specializing in the weird deaths of 11 members of the family in a single home in Burari, Delhi, India in 2018, Home of Secrets and techniques delves into the theories behind of the strangest suicide/homicide instances in current reminiscence. Unmissable stuff. 


This Is a Theft is about Netflix because it will get. A four-part sequence specializing in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, that is basically a documentary about an artwork heist. Bear in mind Evil Genius? (Which can also be on this listing.) This Is a Theft could be very a lot in that type. The first episode takes some time to get going, however be affected person — this one has a payoff.


Homicide Among the many Mormons (2021)

A few of Netflix’s newer true crime documentaries have been a bit bloated and… sorta dangerous?

Fortunately Homicide Among the many Mormons is a return to kind. Positively watch this one. 


Who Killed Little Gregory (2019)

Who Killed Little Gregory is a documentary targeted on the horrific homicide of Grégory Villemin. It is arguably one of the best true crime documentary on Netflix. It is a few homicide, and makes an attempt to resolve that homicide, nevertheless it’s additionally a lesson in media illustration and the horrific sexism Grégory’s mom had to face within the wake of her son’s homicide. 


American Homicide: The Household Subsequent Door (2020)

There are quite a lot of true crime documentaries on the market (and on this listing) however American Homicide: The Household Subsequent Door stands out. 

It tells the story of Chris Watts, a seemingly common man who murdered his spouse and kids. The entry to footage is staggering and it is edited and produced in a singular means, utilizing textual content messages and social media posts to inform the story. It is a horrific reminder of the banal, extremely frequent existence of home violence.


Making a Assassin (2015-2018)

With the swath of true crime documentaries and podcasts that got here in its wake, it is simple to neglect that the world as soon as misplaced its collective thoughts over Making a Assassin. In quite a lot of methods it created the template that many Netflix documentaries now comply with. An actual unique.

Sports activities 


In 2020, within the midst of a pandemic, Netflix dropped this piece of sports activities doc perfection. 

The Final Dance focuses on the Chicago Bulls throughout their ’97-’98 NBA title-winning season, however actually it is a leaping off level for a documentary that tells the life story of its central star, Michael Jordan. 

In consequence, many criticized it for being a bit too Jordan-focused, however The Final Dance was an occasion documentary that lived up to the hype. 


This Oscar-winning documentary is an absolute belter. 

Icarus begins out as an expose on the affect performance-enhancing medicine have on sports activities efficiency, however a sequence of occasions drags director Bryan Fogel into an internet of geopolitics and conspiracies. To say extra would spoil it, however Fogel finally has created a documentary that had a really actual affect on our notion of sports activities as a complete. In that respect, Icarus is a literal sport changer.


Formulation 1: Drive to Survive (2019)

The absolute gold customary for long-running sports activities documentaries. Drive to Survive is so good, and so well-liked, that it is impressed a complete new degree of curiosity in Formulation 1, particularly within the US. This present is nice at elevating the characters that occupy the game. Extra reveals like this, please.


Athlete A is a good function size expose on Larry Nassar, the workforce physician of USA Gymnastics, who had been sexually abusing feminine athletes for many years.

Be warned: This one is harrowing.


14 Peaks tells the story of the Nepalese mountaineer Nimsdai Purja and his purpose of climbing all 14 mountains above the peak of 8,000 meters (26,000 ft) in a single yr. It is unbelievable. Should-watch stuff.


Netflix might need burned the true crime documentary into the bottom, nevertheless it’s on hearth when it comes to sports activities. Unhealthy Sport is the most recent entry into this burgeoning subcategory, and it is superior. Specializing in unusual controversies in sports activities historical past, Unhealthy Sport is much less about main gamers doing main issues, it is about what occurs when sport goes dangerous, will get down within the dust. All of those episodes are nice. Hoping for a season 2. 


The River Runner is sorta like Free Solo for kayaking. Contemplate {that a} praise.

Specializing in Scott Lindgren, a kayaking legend who was a pioneer of the game, it is a conventional story of an excessive sports activities star overcoming odds, nevertheless it runs a bit deeper than that. Combating in opposition to a mind tumor and his personal private demons, Lindgren is a compelling case research. Should watch stuff.


Naomi Osaka has turn out to be probably the most well-known and talked-about athletes on the planet. This fascinating documentary explores completely different phases of her profession and provides unbelievable entry into the lifetime of a younger lady combating the pressures of sport and fame. A must-watch.


If you happen to’re on the lookout for a barely extra uplifting documentary, you can do far worse than The Pace Cubers, a have a look at the world of aggressive… Rubik’s Cubers? It is quick, however packs an unbelievable emotional punch. Put together your self, this one would possibly break you.



Seaspiracy follows within the footsteps of a number of documentaries targeted on the affect of meat consuming on the setting. This time the worldwide fishing trade is within the crosshairs. As anticipated this one has stirred up a little bit of controversy from all stakeholders — PETA, Greenpeace and conservation teams cannot appear to agree if Seaspiracy is correct or honest. Watch it and make up your individual thoughts.


My Octopus Trainer (2020)

My Octopus Trainer follows Craig Foster, a filmmaker who spent a yr snorkeling and interacting with an octopus off the coast of South Africa. It is a nature movie, positive, nevertheless it’s concurrently a documentary designed to encourage awe within the viewer. In brief, octopuses are unbelievable. Little aliens on Earth, basically. That is the story of a relationship between people and nature, nevertheless it’s additionally an inspiring name to motion: Do not ignore the surprise that exists throughout you.


David Attenborough nature documentaries are so pervasive, they’re susceptible to self parody, however Our Planet is — I consider — the excessive watermark. Solely Planet Earth, one other Attenborough doc, comes shut. However I desire this one.


Time could uninteresting its affect, however when Tiger King was first launched on Netflix, your entire world could not cease speaking about it. 

Tiger King explores the unusual underbelly of huge cat breeding, specializing in a solid of unforgettable (and finally harmful) characters. It drags its viewers to bizarre locations. Season 2 is now out there and whereas the present has misplaced quite a lot of its chew, it is intriguing to meet up with this solid of untamed human beings doing wild, fully outlandish issues. 

Politics/historical past 


thirteenth by Ava Duvernay is a staggering documentary that tells the story of American slavery and its long-lasting impacts, lots of which nonetheless resonate as we speak. 

Within the wake of the Black Lives Matter motion, this needs to be obligatory viewing.


Within the wake of the Capitol siege, the Fb/Cambridge Analytica controversy virtually seems like historical historical past, however that does not make this documentary any much less essential. If you have not seen it, then watch it.


Operation Varsity Blues: The Faculty Admissions Scandal (2021)

Just lately launched, Operations Varsity Blues: The Faculty Admissions Scandal has a reputation so long as a few of Netflix’s current documentaries. Fortunately, this is not as bloated as, say, the current Cecil Resort doc, nevertheless it might nonetheless use some trimming. 

Operation Varsity Blues targeted on the FBI investigation into school admissions that put actress Felicity Huffman into jail. Its director, Chris Smith, beforehand labored on the Fyre Pageant documentary. This is not fairly as compelling, however continues to be nicely price watching. 


Knock Down the Home (2019)

No matter your views on Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Knock Down the Home is an unbelievable underdog story that can not be missed. Specializing in progressive feminine candidates through the 2018 congressional main campaigns, it is an insightful have a look at the democratic course of. It is an inspiring reminder that we want to combat so as to make the voices of bizarre folks depend.


What Occurred, Miss Simone? (2015)

Not gonna say a lot right here. Nina Simone is a legend and that is possibly the most effective documentaries I’ve ever seen. 


Overlong and bloated, Wild Wild Nation is however probably the most fascinating documentaries I’ve ever watched on Netflix. 

It tells the story of Indian guru Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, who tried to construct a big sprawling commune, for what was basically a intercourse cult, in the USA. It is a unusual story that by some means turns into stranger with age. Very similar to Tiger King, the story plumbs depths you will not consider. At occasions it is a slog, however Wild Wild Nation is totally worthwhile.


I completely adore this documentary. 5 present acclaimed administrators (together with Steven Spielberg and Francis Ford Coppola) assist inform the story of 5 well-known film administrators from the ’30s and ’40s who did frontline work through the Second World Battle. It wraps their legacies alongside the affect of the struggle itself into a very compelling story of Hollywood’s golden age.


An Oscar winner for Netflix, this documentary is the primary produced by Barack and Michelle Obama’s Larger Floor Productions workforce. 

American Manufacturing unit tells the story of Fuyao, a Chinese language firm that constructed a manufacturing unit in Ohio that inhabits a now-closed Normal Motors plant. You have got to watch this film.


Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Wealthy (2020)

By this level all of us have some type of understanding of Jeffrey Epstein’s story however Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Wealthy does itself an amazing service by specializing in the tales of the survivors of his abuse. 

The Cinemart/Hulu

Fyre: The Biggest Celebration That By no means Occurred (2019)

Hulu additionally has an amazing Fyre pageant documentary, however I desire this Netflix one. Not like many Netflix documentaries, that are stretched and bloated into multipart episodes, this documentary is sharp, direct and stable gold your entire means by means of.

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