Biographical Documentaries

by fergygarrett | created - 24 Feb 2014 | updated - 25 Feb 2014 | Public
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1. The Trials of Darryl Hunt (2006)

PG-13 | 106 min | Documentary, Crime

"The Trials of Darryl Hunt" is a feature documentary about a brutal rape/murder case and a wrongly convicted man, Darryl Hunt, who spent nearly twenty years in prison for a crime he did not... See full summary »

Directors: Ricki Stern, Anne Sundberg | Stars: Evelyn Jefferson, Fred Flagler, John Reeves, Mary Anne Sheboy

Votes: 965 | Gross: $0.00M

2. The Armstrong Lie (2013)

R | 124 min | Documentary, Biography, Sport

67 Metascore

A documentary chronicling sports legend Lance Armstrong's improbable rise and ultimate fall from grace.

Director: Alex Gibney | Stars: Lance Armstrong, Reed Albergotti, Betsy Andreu, Frankie Andreu

Votes: 6,991 | Gross: $0.38M

3. The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till (2005)

PG-13 | 70 min | Documentary, Biography

80 Metascore

Never-before-seen testimony is included in this documentary on Emmett Louis Till, who, in 1955, was brutally murdered after he whistled at a white woman.

Director: Keith Beauchamp | Stars: Mamie Till Mobley, Wheeler Parker, Simeon Wright, Ruthie Mae Crawford

Votes: 359 | Gross: $0.20M

4. Tim Tebow's Wild Rise (2012 TV Movie)

30 min | Documentary

E! examines a fascinating athlete who has transcended sports to become a full-fledged pop icon.

Stars: Kristen Aldridge, Skip Bayless, Gary Belsky, Ryan Thomas Brockington

Votes: 10

5. Tyson (2008)

R | 90 min | Documentary, Biography, Sport

83 Metascore

A mixture of original interviews, archival footage, and photographs sheds light on the life experiences of Mike Tyson.

Director: James Toback | Stars: Mike Tyson, Mills Lane, Trevor Berbick, Cus D'Amato

Votes: 11,855 | Gross: $0.89M

6. Lenny Cooke (2013)

Not Rated | 88 min | Documentary, Biography, Drama

70 Metascore

Lenny Cooke was the number-one ranked high school basketball player in America, but his inevitable fall from grace will forever be remembered.

Directors: Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie | Stars: Lenny Cooke, Tom Konchalski, LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony

Votes: 398

8. Orwell Rolls in His Grave (2003)

Unrated | 84 min | Documentary

49 Metascore

A documentary analyzing the role of the modern American media and its effects on democracy.

Director: Robert Kane Pappas | Stars: Vincent Bugliosi, Jeff Cohen, Dennis Kucinich, Charles Lewis

Votes: 1,091 | Gross: $0.02M

9. Craigslist Joe (2012)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary, Adventure

45 Metascore

In a time when America's economy was crumbling and sense of community was in question, one guy left everything behind to see if he could survive solely on the support and goodwill of the 21st century's new town square: Craigslist.

Director: Joseph Garner | Stars: Joseph Garner, Kristos Andrews, Gina Keatley, Michael T. Kuciak

Votes: 3,682

10. George Harrison: Living in the Material World (2011)

Not Rated | 208 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

Filmmaker Martin Scorsese examines the life of musician George Harrison, weaving together interviews, concert footage, home movies and photographs.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: George Harrison, Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Ringo Starr

Votes: 9,954

11. Casino Jack and the United States of Money (2010)

R | 118 min | Documentary

68 Metascore

A probing investigation into the lies, greed and corruption surrounding D.C. super-lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his cronies.

Director: Alex Gibney | Stars: Jack Abramoff, Tom DeLay, William Branner, Melanie Sloan

Votes: 1,541 | Gross: $0.18M

12. Sins of My Father (2009)

Not Rated | 94 min | Documentary

This is the incredible story of Pablo Escobar, the infamous boss of Colombia's Medellin drug cartel, told for the very first time by his son, Sebastian and his widow Maria Isabel Santos. In... See full summary »

Director: Nicolas Entel | Stars: Jorge Enrique Abello, Pablo Escobar, Sebastian Marroquín, María Isabel Santos

Votes: 1,538

13. Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer (2010)

R | 117 min | Documentary

68 Metascore

An in-depth look at the rise and fall of New York Governor Eliot Spitzer, including interviews with the scandalized, former politician.

Director: Alex Gibney | Stars: Eliot Spitzer, Alex Gibney, Hulbert Waldroup, Lloyd Constantine

Votes: 2,135 | Gross: $0.19M

14. Frame 313: The JFK Assassination Theories (2008)

Not Rated | 114 min | Documentary, Crime, History

New information and experts cover current updates on the saga that shocked America and changed history as we still have no answers to the truth.

Stars: Walter Cronkite, John F. Kennedy, Tom Kane, Jacqueline Kennedy

Votes: 74

15. King Kennedy (2011)

110 min | Documentary, Biography, Crime

A BRIEF MOMENT IN TIME (formerly King Kennedy) tells the stories of John F Kennedy, Robert F Kennedy and Martin Luther King in a manner never before attempted. Using 100% archive material ... See full summary »

Director: Ronan O'Rahilly | Stars: Fidel Castro, Sam Giancana, Richard Helms, Jimmy Hoffa

Votes: 6

17. Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011)

PG | 81 min | Documentary

77 Metascore

A documentary on 85-year-old sushi master Jiro Ono, his renowned Tokyo restaurant, and his relationship with his son and eventual heir, Yoshikazu.

Director: David Gelb | Stars: Jiro Ono, Yoshikazu Ono, Masuhiro Yamamoto, Daisuke Nakazama

Votes: 31,678 | Gross: $2.55M

18. The Cruise (1998)

PG-13 | 76 min | Documentary

69 Metascore

Affectionate portrait of Tim "Speed" Levitch, a tour guide for Manhattan's Gray Line double-decker buses. He talks fast, is in love with the city, and dispenses historical facts, ... See full summary »

Director: Bennett Miller | Star: Timothy 'Speed' Levitch

Votes: 1,588 | Gross: $0.24M

19. More Than a Game (2008)

PG | 105 min | Documentary, Biography, Sport

59 Metascore

This documentary follows NBA superstar LeBron James and four of his talented teammates through the trials and tribulations of high school basketball in Ohio and James' journey to fame.

Director: Kristopher Belman | Stars: LeBron James, Dru Joyce, Romeo Travis, Sian Cotton

Votes: 4,941 | Gross: $0.94M

20. Tabloid (2010)

R | 87 min | Documentary, Crime

74 Metascore

A documentary on a former Miss Wyoming who is charged with abducting and imprisoning a young Mormon Missionary.

Director: Errol Morris | Stars: Joyce McKinney, Peter Tory, Troy Williams, Jackson Shaw

Votes: 6,392 | Gross: $0.68M

21. Semper Fi: Always Faithful (2011)

Not Rated | 75 min | Documentary

Marine Corps Master Sgt. Jerry Ensminger was a devoted Marine for nearly twenty-five years. As a drill instructor he lived and breathed the "Corps" and was responsible for indoctrinating ... See full summary »

Directors: Tony Hardmon, Rachel Libert | Stars: Jerry Ensminger, Michael Partain

Votes: 126

22. The World According to Bush (2004 TV Movie)

90 min | Documentary, War

The 1000 days of George W. Bush's presidency from the 9/11 attacks to the iraqi quagmire. How a bunch of people influenced by neo-cons hawks took control of the US foreign policy.

Director: William Karel | Stars: John Ashcroft, Robert Baer, Tony Blair, Antony Blinken

Votes: 674

23. Muscle Shoals (2013)

PG | 111 min | Documentary, Biography, History

75 Metascore

A documentary that celebrates Rick Hall, the founder of FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, and the signature sound he developed in songs such as "I'll Take You There", "Brown Sugar", and "When a Man Loves a Woman".

Director: Greg 'Freddy' Camalier | Stars: Rick Hall, Aretha Franklin, Keith Richards, Candi Staton

Votes: 3,336 | Gross: $0.70M

24. Bill Cunningham: New York (2010)

Not Rated | 84 min | Documentary, Biography, History

76 Metascore

A profile of the noted and extraordinarily cheerful veteran New York City fashion photographer.

Director: Richard Press | Stars: Bill Cunningham, Anna Wintour, Michael Kors, Editta Sherman

Votes: 4,964 | Gross: $1.51M

25. Mugabe and the White African (2009)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary

77 Metascore

An intimate and moving account of one family's extraordinary courage in the face of overwhelming injustice and brutality.

Directors: Lucy Bailey, Andrew Thompson

Votes: 873 | Gross: $0.00M

26. The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia (2009)

TV-MA | 86 min | Documentary

A year in the life of the White family, well known for Jesco White, the star of the "Dancing Outlaw" documentary.

Director: Julien Nitzberg | Stars: J. Parker Bazzle II, Big & Rich, Ponty's Camper, Derek Wayne Castle

Votes: 3,366

27. Different Drummer (1989–1991)
Episode: Dancing Outlaw (1991)

Not Rated | 29 min | Documentary

This documentary short, produced for West Virginia public TV's "Different Drummer" series, introduces us to Jesco White, a hard-living, tap-dancing Boone County resident whose repeated ... See full summary »

Director: Jacob Young | Stars: Wattie Green, Dorsey White, Jerry White, Jesco White

Votes: 494

28. Searching for Sugar Man (2012)

PG-13 | 86 min | Documentary, Biography, Music

79 Metascore

Two South Africans set out to discover what happened to their unlikely musical hero, the mysterious 1970s rock n roller, Rodriguez.

Director: Malik Bendjelloul | Stars: Rodriguez, Stephen 'Sugar' Segerman, Dennis Coffey, Mike Theodore

Votes: 60,374 | Gross: $3.97M

29. When We Were Kings (1996)

PG | 88 min | Documentary, Sport

83 Metascore

A documentary of the 1974 heavyweight championship bout in Zaire, "The Rumble in the Jungle," between champion George Foreman and underdog challenger Muhammad Ali.

Director: Leon Gast | Stars: Muhammad Ali, George Foreman, Don King, James Brown

Votes: 14,223 | Gross: $2.67M

30. Stephen Fry: The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive (2006 TV Movie)

120 min | Documentary

Stephen Fry presents this documentary exploring the disease of manic depression; a little understood but potentially devastating condition affecting an estimated two percent of the ... See full summary »

Director: Ross Wilson | Stars: Stephen Fry, Andy Behrman, Jo Brand, Jo Crocker

Votes: 1,111

31. Crumb (1994)

R | 119 min | Documentary, Biography, Comedy

93 Metascore

An intimate portrait of controversial cartoonist Robert Crumb and his traumatized family.

Director: Terry Zwigoff | Stars: Robert Crumb, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, Charles Crumb, Maxon Crumb

Votes: 17,412 | Gross: $3.17M

32. My Architect (2003)

116 min | Documentary, Biography

81 Metascore

Director Nathaniel Kahn searches to understand his father, noted architect Louis Kahn, who died bankrupt and alone in 1974.

Director: Nathaniel Kahn | Stars: Edmund Bacon, Edwina Pattison Daniels, Balkrishna Doshi, Frank Gehry

Votes: 2,996 | Gross: $2.75M

33. An Unreasonable Man (2006)

Not Rated | 122 min | Documentary, Biography

75 Metascore

A look at the career of consumer advocate Ralph Nader from wannabe presidential candidate to public pariah.

Directors: Henriette Mantel, Steve Skrovan | Stars: Ralph Nader, Pat Buchanan, Howard Zinn, Eric Alterman

Votes: 1,623 | Gross: $0.18M

34. Cutie and the Boxer (2013)

R | 82 min | Documentary, Biography

83 Metascore

This candid New York love story explores the chaotic 40-year marriage of famed boxing painter Ushio Shinohara and his wife, Noriko. Anxious to shed her role as her overbearing husband's assistant, Noriko finds an identity of her own.

Director: Zachary Heinzerling | Stars: Ushio Shinohara, Noriko Shinohara, Alex Shinohara, Ethan Cohen

Votes: 4,380 | Gross: $0.20M

35. Mark Twain (2001 TV Movie)

TV-PG | 212 min | Documentary, Biography

A biographical film about the acclaimed American humourist and author.

Director: Ken Burns | Stars: Keith David, Kevin Conway, Philip Bosco, Blythe Danner

Votes: 767

36. Thomas Jefferson (1997– )

180 min | Documentary, History

A biographical film about The United States' influential and profoundly enigmatic Founding Father.

Stars: Ossie Davis, Joseph Ellis, John Hope Franklin, Gwyneth Paltrow

Votes: 549

37. The Boy Whose Skin Fell Off (2004 TV Movie)

50 min | Documentary

A year ago, 36-year-old Jonny Kennedy died. He had a terrible genetic condition called Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB) - which meant that his skin literally fell off at the slightest ... See full summary »

Director: Patrick Collerton | Stars: Edna Kennedy, Jonny Kennedy, Nell McAndrew

Votes: 363

38. Sarah Palin: You Betcha! (2011)

Unrated | 91 min | Documentary

41 Metascore

Nick Broomfield goes in pursuit of Sarah Palin, interviewing her family and friends, for a decidedly unauthorized perspective on this growing force in American politics.

Directors: Nick Broomfield, Joan Churchill | Stars: Sarah Palin, Nick Broomfield, Barbara Adams, Chuck Heath

Votes: 795 | Gross: $0.01M

39. Sex: My British Job (2013)

Not Rated | 63 min | Documentary

Nick Broomfield met Hsiao Hung Pai, a journalist who was working for the Guardian, when making his feature film 'Ghosts' (about the Morecambe Bay Chinese Cockle Pickers ). As an experiment ... See full summary »

Director: Nick Broomfield | Stars: Nick Broomfield, Hsiao-Hung Pai

Votes: 397

41. The War Room (1993)

PG | 96 min | Documentary, History

A documentary of the Bill Clinton 1992 presidential campaign and the organization who ran it.

Directors: Chris Hegedus, D.A. Pennebaker | Stars: James Carville, George Stephanopoulos, Heather Beckel, Paul Begala

Votes: 3,623 | Gross: $0.90M

42. Grey Gardens (1975)

PG | 95 min | Documentary, Comedy, Drama

An old mother and her middle-aged daughter, the aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy, live their eccentric lives in a filthy, decaying mansion in East Hampton.

Directors: Ellen Hovde, Albert Maysles, David Maysles, Muffie Meyer | Stars: Edith Bouvier Beale, Edith 'Little Edie' Bouvier Beale, Brooks Hyers

Votes: 11,200 | Gross: $0.03M

43. Exit Through the Gift Shop (2010)

R | 87 min | Documentary, Comedy, Crime

85 Metascore

The story of how an eccentric French shop-keeper and amateur film-maker attempted to locate and befriend Banksy, only to have the artist turn the camera back on its owner. The film contains... See full summary »

Director: Banksy | Stars: Banksy, Mr. Brainwash, Space Invader, Debora Guetta

Votes: 59,977 | Gross: $3.29M

44. The Tillman Story (2010)

R | 94 min | Documentary, Biography, Mystery

86 Metascore

Pat Tillman never thought of himself as a hero. His choice to leave a multimillion-dollar football contract and join the military wasn't done for any reason other than he felt it was the ... See full summary »

Director: Amir Bar-Lev | Stars: Pat Tillman, Josh Brolin, Mary Tillman, Russell Baer

Votes: 4,406 | Gross: $0.80M

45. You're Gonna Miss Me (2005)

91 min | Documentary, Music

64 Metascore

Documentary about rock pioneer Roky Erickson, detailing his rise as a psychedelic hero, his lengthy institutionalization, his descent into poverty and filth, and his brother's struggle with their religious mother to improve Roky's care.

Director: Keven McAlester | Stars: Byron Coley, 13th Floor Elevators, Evelyn Erickson, Roky Erickson

Votes: 964 | Gross: $0.00M

46. Jupiter's Wife (1995)

Not Rated | 87 min | Documentary, Biography, Mystery

7.2