As much as we all enjoy mindless films after a hard day's work, sometimes what we really want is something that is informative and intellectually engaging, a documentary film. These films take you to places you would not otherwise go, and make you think about things in new and unexpected ways. Below is just a few selections of documentary films from our catalog.
A discussion on the keeping of intelligent creatures in captivity. Employs the story of Tilikum, the notorious performing whale who, unlike orcas in the wild, has taken the lives of several people while in captivity.
On August 7th, 1974, a young Frenchman named Philippe Petit stepped out on a wire illegally rigged between the New York World Trade Center's Twin Towers. After dancing for nearly an hour on the wire, he was arrested, taken for psychological evaluation, and brought to jail, before he was finally released. This extraordinary documentary incorporates Petit's personal footage to show how he overcame seemingly insurmountable challenges to achieve the artistic crime of the century.
They are the voices behind the greatest rock, pop and R&B hits of all time, but no one knows their names. Now, in this award-winning documentary, director Morgan Neville shines the spotlight on the untold stories of such legendary background singers as Darlene Love, Merry Clayton, Lisa Fischer, Judith Hill, and more.
West of Memphis
True story centering on the new investigation surrounding the 1993 murders of three 8-year-old boys in the town of West Memphis, Arkansas. Evidence surrounding the murders exposed the wrongful conviction of three teenagers who lost 18 years of their lives imprisoned for crimes they did not commit.
The story of the brave young men and women who successfully reversed the tide of an epidemic, demanded the attention of a fearful nation, and stopped AIDS from becoming a death sentence. This improbable group of activists bucked oppression and infiltrated government agencies and the pharmaceutical industry, helping to identify promising new medication and treatments and move them through trials and into drugstores in record time.
In 1964 Michael Apted interviewed a group of seven-year-old children from diverse backgrounds from all over England, asking them about their lives and their dreams for the future. Every seven years, Apted has been back to talk to the same subjects.
The filmmakers examine a country where death squad leaders are celebrated as heroes, challenging them to reenact their real-life mass-killings in the style of the American movies they love.
In 2009 Alex Gibney was hired to make a film about Lance Armstrong's comeback to cycling. The project was shelved when the doping scandal erupted, and re-opened after Armstrong's confession.