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The best Netflix documentaries to watch in 2021

riverrunner

It is like Free Solo for Kayaks.


Netflix

Netflix is a dream for documentary followers: True crime, historical past, sports activities… each style is extremely properly represented.

However there’s virtually an excessive amount of. To the purpose the place it is overwhelming. you do not wish to get caught in the endle we have created the next checklist. Damaged down by style, listed here are our favorite documentaries on Netflix. Good luck and completely happy watching! 

Greatest sports activities documentaries on Netflix 

The River Runner

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Netflix

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

Specializing in Scott Lindgren, a kayaking legend who was an early pioneer of the game, this can be a conventional story of an excessive sports activities star overcoming odds, but it surely runs just a little deeper than that. Preventing in opposition to a mind tumour and his personal private demons, Lindgren is a compelling case examine. Should watch stuff.

Untold

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Netflix

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

It is a sports activities documentary collection, with every episode going in-depth on controversial sports activities matters. The primary 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.

The second episode focuses on Christie Martin, the feminine boxer from the 80s who turned well-known after preventing on Mike Tyson’s undercard. 

It is launched weekly and, thus far so good. It’s totally 30 for 30 — which is an effective factor.

The Final Dance

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Netflix

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 profitable 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 just a little too Jordan-focused, however The Final Dance was an occasion documentary that lived as much as the hype. 

Icarus

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This Oscar-winning documentary is an absolute belter. 

Icarus begins out as an expose on the affect performance-enhancing medication have on sports activities efficiency, however a sequence of occasions drags director Bryan Fogel into an online of geopolitics and conspiracies. To say extra would spoil it, however Fogel in the end 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 recreation changer.

Naomi Osaka

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Netflix

Naomi Osaka has change into one of the well-known and talked about athletes on the planet. This fascinating documentary explores totally different phases of her profession and affords unimaginable entry into the lifetime of a younger lady scuffling with the pressures of sport and fame. A should watch.

Sunderland ‘Til I Die

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Netflix

Prime Video offers you entry to the (admittedly) nice All or Nothing collection, which supplies you behind the scenes entry to high Premier League golf equipment like Man Metropolis and Spurs, however each of these come throughout buffed and polished. You by no means actually get true behind the scenes entry.

Sunderland ‘Til I Die is totally different. It is gritty, brutal and offers you entry to the worst components of what it means to run a soccer group. It virtually hurts to look at.

Athlete A

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Netflix

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

Be warned: This one is harrowing.

The Pace Cubers

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Netflix

Should you’re in search of a barely extra uplifting documentary, you may do far worse than The Pace Cubers, a take a look at the world of aggressive rubix… cubers? It is quick, however packs an unimaginable emotional punch. Put together your self, this one may break you.

Greatest true crime documentaries on Netflix

The Staircase

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Netflix

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

Specializing in Michael Peterson and the dying of his spouse Kathleen, The Staircase is greater than only a homicide thriller. It is a drawn-out epic that takes place over literal many years, a documentary that follows Peterson and examines his each transfer, however one way or the other nonetheless stays goal. 

Who Killed Little Gregory

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Netflix

Who Killed Little Gregory is a documentary centered on the horrific homicide of Grégory Villemin. It is arguably the very best true crime documentary on Netflix. It is a couple of homicide, and makes an attempt to unravel that homicide, but it surely’s additionally a lesson in media illustration and the horrific sexism Grégory’s mom needed to face within the wake her personal son’s homicide. 

Sophie: A Homicide in West Cork

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Netflix

One other Netflix true crime documentary collection, Sophie: A Homicide In West Cork follows the case of Sophie Toscan Du Plantier, a French artist and TV producer who was killed in 1996, in West Cork, Eire. Justice for her homicide took many years to enact and this collection follows the case. 

This Is A Theft

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Netflix

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

Homicide Among the many Mormons

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Netflix

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

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

Making A Assassin

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Netflix

With the swathe of true crime documentaries and podcasts that got here in its wake, it is simple to overlook that the world as soon as misplaced its collective thoughts over Making A Assassin. In lots of methods it created the template that many Netflix documentaries now observe. An actual authentic.

The Keepers

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Netflix

I’ve watched loads of true crime documentaries on Netflix, however nothing has come near The Keepers. A staggering story, advised 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 college in Baltimore, however The Keepers goes additional than you may anticipate and exposes a possible cowl up of intercourse abuse allegations.

American Homicide: The Household Subsequent Door

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Netflix

There are lots of true crime documentaries on the market (and on this checklist) however American Homicide: The Household Subsequent Door stands proud. 

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 novel approach, 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.

Evil Genius

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Netflix

Telling the weird story of the “pizza bomber”, Evil Genius is certainly a kind of docu-series that ought to have been a film, but it surely’s compelling nonetheless. It thrives by specializing in the characters behind the crime. Properly value a gander.

Greatest nature documentaries on Netflix

Seaspiracy

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Netflix

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

My Octopus Instructor

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Netflix

My Octopus Instructor follows Craig Foster, a filmmaker who spent a 12 months snorkelling and interacting with an octopus off the coast of South Africa. It is a nature movie, certain, but it surely’s concurrently a documentary designed to encourage awe within the viewer. Briefly, octopi are unimaginable. Little aliens on Earth, basically. That is the story of a relationship between people and nature but it surely’s additionally an inspiring name to motion: Do not ignore the surprise that exists throughout you.

Our Planet

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Netflix

David Attenborough nature documentaries are so ubiquitous they’re weak to self parody, however Our Planet is — I imagine — the excessive watermark. Solely Planet Earth, one other Attenborough docu, comes shut. However I choose this one.

Tiger King

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Netflix

Time could boring its affect, however when Tiger King was first launched on Netflix, all the world could not cease speaking about it. 

It is a present that strikes quickly from the weird to the downright unbelievable. Tiger King explores the unusual underbelly of huge cat breeding, specializing in a solid of unforgettable (and in the end harmful) characters. It drags its viewers to bizarre locations. Utterly unforgettable.

Greatest politics/historical past documentaries on Netflix

Operation Varsity Blues: The School Admissions Scandal

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Netflix

Not too long ago launched, Operations Varsity Blues: The School Admissions Scandal has a reputation so long as a few of Netflix’s latest documentaries. Fortunately, this is not as bloated as, say, the recent Cecil Hotel docu, but it surely might nonetheless use some trimming. 

Operation Varsity Blues centered on the FBI investigation into faculty admissions that put actress Felicity Huffman into jail. Its director Chris Smith beforehand labored on the Fyre Competition documentary. This is not fairly as compelling, however remains to be properly value watching. 

Knock Down the Home

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Sundance

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

Wild Wild Nation

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Netflix

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

It tells the story of Indian guru Bhagwan Shree Rajnees, who tried to construct a huge sprawling commune, for what was basically a intercourse cult, in the USA. It is a unusual story that one way or the other turns into stranger with age. Very like Tiger King the story plumbs depths you will not imagine. At occasions it is a slog, however Wild Wild Nation is totally worthwhile.

thirteenth

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Netflix

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 immediately. 

Within the wake of the Black Lives Matter motion, this must be necessary viewing.

5 Got here Again

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Netflix

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 in the course of the Second World Warfare. It wraps their legacies alongside the affect of the conflict itself into a very compelling story of Hollywood’s golden age.

American Manufacturing facility

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Netflix

One other Oscar winner for Netflix, this documentary is the primary produced by Barack and Michelle Obama’s Increased Floor Productions group. 

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

Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Wealthy

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Netflix

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

The remainder…

Fyre: The Biggest Celebration That By no means Occurred

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The Cinemart/Hulu

Hulu additionally has an excellent Fyre competition documentary, however I choose this Netflix one. Not like many Netflix documentaries, that are stretched and bloated into multi-part episodes, this documentary is sharp, direct and stable gold all the approach by.

What Occurred, Miss Simone?

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Netflix

Not gonna say a lot right here. Nina Simone is a legend and that is perhaps among the finest documentaries I’ve ever seen. 

The Nice Hack

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Netflix

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

Learn extra: Best streaming deals: Save on Netflix, Disney Plus, HBO Max, Hulu, Spotify and more

https://www.cnet.com/information/the-best-netflix-documentaries-to-watch-in-2021/#ftag=CADf328eec | One of the best Netflix documentaries to look at in 2021

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