From real-life crime thrillers to thought-provoking eco-issues, these are the best Netflix documentaries to binge on right now, each one guaranteed to have you gripped and looking at the world in a whole new light. Get ready to give up your weekends…
The murder trial of American exchange student Amanda Knox captivated the entire world in the early 2000s. She was found guilty of murdering her roommate, Meredith Kercher, in Italy in 2007, but after an appeal, was acquitted and released in 2015. This Netflix original looks back at the case and gets the perspective of Knox and others closely involved.
Director Ava DuVernay looks at the history of the American prison system and shows how it relates to the nation's history of racial inequality.
Audrie & Daisy
This sharp documentary on sexual assault exposes the shame and bullying that teenagers endure online, telling the tales of two teenage girls in different American towns who both found themselves assaulted at high school parties.
Biggie and Tupac
In this gripping documentary, filmmaker Nick Broomfield takes a look at the East Coast/West Coast hip-hop rivalry that resulted in the unsolved murders of rappers Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls.
Nominated for the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, Cartel Land is a gripping insight into the drug wars plaguing the American-Mexican border.
A gritty true crime story – part documentary, part fiction – which explores the murder of six-year-old child pageant queen JonBenét Ramsey, and the impact the high-profile case had on American society.
Coral reefs around the world are vanishing at an unprecedented rate. In Chasing Coral, a team of divers, photographers and scientists set out on an ocean adventure to discover why the reefs are disappearing, to shed light on the enormous scale of the issue, and how scientists are hoping to save this essential part of the marine ecosystem.
The gastronomical series shines a spotlight on top chefs from around the world, showcasing some of the most mouthwatering dishes you’ve ever seen.
Cocaine barons invaded Miami in the late 1980s, and since then, the world has never been the same. This documentary looks at the blood-soaked era and the people who were responsible.
Fire at Sea
Gianfranco Rosi’s Oscar-nominated documentary won the Golden Bear for Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival in 2016, and gives a glimpse into the lives of those living as refugees on the island of Lampedusa, just south of Italy in the Mediterranean sea.
Into the Inferno
Director Werner Herzog travels to the corners of the globe (including North Korea) to examine the beauty and danger of active volcanoes.
Janis: Little Girl Blue
Musician Cat Power narrates this candid documentary on Janis Joplin's rise to stardom, from letters that the legendary singer wrote over the years to her friends, family, and collaborators.
Jim: The James Foley Story
This in-depth documentary focuses on the life and work of American conflict journalist James Foley, killed by ISIS terrorists in 2014.
Man on Wire
Winner of the best documentary Oscar in 2009, Man on Wire is a powerful retelling of Philippe Petit's illegal high-wire walk across the Twin Towers in 1974.
Nobody Speak: Trials Of The Free Press
This new Netflix docu-feature examines former wrester Hulk Hogan’s case against the gossip site Gawker, highlighting other wealthy figures aggressively seeking to silence the press.
Paris is Burning
One of the most iconic movies about drag culture, Paris Is Burning dives into the New York drag scene of the '80s, focusing on balls, voguing and the ambitions and dreams of those who gave the era its warmth and vitality.
The Act of Killing
Joshua Oppenheimer's Oscar-nominated documentary challenges former Indonesian death-squad leaders, by making them reenact their mass killings. The results are both comical and heart-wrenching.
This utterly addictive seven-part true-crime series focusses on the unsolved murder of Sister Cathy Cesnik – a 26-year-old Baltimore nun who was murdered at the age of 26 in 1969 and, to this day, both the identity of her killer and cause of death have been shrouded in secrecy.
What Happened Miss Simone?
This Oscar-nominated documentary by Liz Garbus takes a look back at the powerful career of Nina Simone, who went from chart-topping singer to influential rights activist.
The White Helmets
An Oscar-winning short which follows the White Helmets, a group of volunteer rescue workers with branches all over the country, who risk their own safety to pull fellow citizens from bomb wreckage in Syria.