What Are The Best Netflix Original Documentaries Right Now? (9th August 2018)

Netflix have many Original documentaries and docu-series available on their streaming service – but how do you know which ones to watch? Well, here are the top 20 Netflix Original documentaries and docu-series (according to our own unique rating system) – why not take a look and let us know which are your favourites?

So, without further ado here are the top 20 Netflix Original documentaries as of today (9th August 2018):

1) Virunga
New on Netflix Rating: 89.6%
Year: 2014
Duration: 1hr 40m
Genre: Social & Cultural Documentaries, British Films, Science & Nature Documentaries, Documentaries
In the forested depths of eastern Congo lies Virunga National Park, one of the most bio-diverse places in the world and home to the last of the mountain gorillas. Here, an embattled team of park rangers that includes an ex-child soldier and a Belgian prince, risk their lives to protect this UNESCO World Heritage Site from armed rebels, poachers, and even corporations trying to wrest control of Congo’s rich natural resources. Nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.
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2) Chasing Coral
New on Netflix Rating: 87.25%
Year: 2017
Duration: 1hr 29m
Genre: Documentaries, Science & Nature Documentaries
Divers, scientists and photographers around the world mount an epic underwater campaign to document the disappearance of coral reefs.
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3) 13TH
New on Netflix Rating: 87.2%
Year: 2016
Duration: 1hr 40m
Genre: Social & Cultural Documentaries, Documentaries
In this thought-provoking documentary, scholars, activists and politicians analyze the criminalization of African Americans and the U.S. prison boom.
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4) The Square
New on Netflix Rating: 85.4%
Year: 2014
Duration: 1hr 44m
Genre: Middle-Eastern Films, Social & Cultural Documentaries, African Films, Documentaries, International Movies, Political Documentaries
As the Egyptian Revolution unfolds, this acclaimed, eyewitness documentary immerses the viewer in the intense emotional drama of young people on the streets of Cairo claiming their rights and creating a society of conscience. As two governments topple, the personal stories of the freedom fighters unfold in an inspiring tribute to the power of citizenship.
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5) Making a Murderer
New on Netflix Rating: 85%
Year: 2015
Duration: 1 Season
Genre: TV Programmes, Crime Documentaries, US TV Programmes
Filmed over 10 years, this real-life thriller follows a DNA exoneree who, while exposing police corruption, becomes a suspect in a grisly new crime.
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6) Winter on Fire
New on Netflix Rating: 84.8%
Year: 2015
Duration: 1hr 38m
Genre: Social & Cultural Documentaries, Documentaries, Political Documentaries
Over 93 days in Ukraine, what started as peaceful student demonstrations became a violent revolution and full-fledged civil rights movement.
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7) The White Helmets
New on Netflix Rating: 84.5%
Year: 2016
Duration: 40m
Genre: Social & Cultural Documentaries, Documentaries
As daily airstrikes pound civilian targets in Syria, a group of indomitable first responders risk their lives to rescue victims from the rubble.
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8) Cuba and the Cameraman
New on Netflix Rating: 84.25%
Year: 2017
Duration: 1hr 54m
Genre: Documentaries, Social & Cultural Documentaries
Emmy-winning filmmaker Jon Alpert chronicles the fortunes of three Cuban families over the course of four tumultuous decades in the nation’s history.
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9) The Battered Bastards of Baseball
New on Netflix Rating: 83.8%
Year: 2014
Duration: 1hr 19m
Genre: Sports Films, Historical Documentaries, Documentaries, Sports Documentaries
The jaw-dropping true story of a real-life “Bad News Bears,” this inspiring documentary recounts the history of the Portland Mavericks, an independent professional baseball team that broke attendance records in 1973 with a roster that included a blacklisted former Yankee pitcher, a left-handed catcher, the sport’s first female general manager, and young movie star Kurt Russell, whose actor father Bing was the scrappy team’s owner.
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10) Chef’s Table
New on Netflix Rating: 83.67%
Year: 2018
Duration: 4 Volumes
Genre: TV Programmes, Food & Travel TV, American Programmes, US TV Documentaries, Reality Programmes, Documentary Programmes, Documentaries
In this Emmy-nominated series, meet culinary stars around the world who are redefining gourmet food with innovative dishes and tantalizing desserts.
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11) Sense8: Creating the World
New on Netflix Rating: 83%
Year: 2015
Duration: 25m
Genre: TV Documentaries, TV Programmes, Documentaries, US TV Documentaries, US TV Programmes
Go behind the scenes and around the world with the “Sense8” cast and crew in this in-depth look at how the hit series is made.
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12) Sky Ladder: The Art of Cai Guo-Qiang
New on Netflix Rating: 82.8%
Year: 2016
Duration: 1hr 19m
Genre: Social & Cultural Documentaries, Documentaries
Known for his spectacular pyrotechnic displays, Chinese artist Cai Guo-Qiang creates his most ambitious project yet in this breathtaking documentary.
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13) Kingdom of Us
New on Netflix Rating: 82.33%
Year: 2017
Duration: 1hr 49m
Genre: Documentaries, Biographical Documentaries
A father’s suicide sends a family of eight on a journey through childhood memories and treacherous emotional waters in this poignant documentary.
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14) Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond – Featuring a Very Special, Contractually Obligated Mention of Tony Clifton
New on Netflix Rating: 82.25%
Year: 2017
Duration: 1hr 33m
Genre: Rock & Pop, Documentaries, Biographical Documentaries
Through the lens of his stunningly immersive performance as Andy Kaufman, Jim Carrey ponders the meaning of life, reality, identity and career.
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15) The Defiant Ones
New on Netflix Rating: 82%
Year: 2017
Duration: Limited Series
Genre: TV Programmes, American Programmes, US TV Documentaries, Documentary Programmes, Documentaries
Director Allen Hughes (“Menace II Society”) traces the rise of music legends Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine and chronicles their groundbreaking partnership.
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16) Team Foxcatcher
New on Netflix Rating: 82%
Year: 2016
Duration: 1hr 31m
Genre: Crime Films, Documentaries, Crime Documentaries
With never-before seen home video, this film recounts the paranoid downward spiral of John E. du Pont and the murder of Olympic wrestler Dave Schultz.
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17) Time: The Kalief Browder Story
New on Netflix Rating: 81.5%
Year: 2017
Duration: 1 Season
Genre: TV Programmes, US TV Programmes, Documentaries, Biographical Documentaries, Social & Cultural Documentaries
This series traces the tragic case of Kalief Browder, a Bronx teen who spent three horrific years in jail, despite never being convicted of a crime.
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18) What Happened, Miss Simone?
New on Netflix Rating: 80.8%
Year: 2015
Duration: 1hr 42m
Genre: Music & Concert Documentaries, Social & Cultural Documentaries, Documentaries, Biographical Documentaries
Using never-before-heard recordings, rare archival footage and her best-known songs, this is the story of legendary singer and activist Nina Simone.
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19) Heroin(e)
New on Netflix Rating: 80.67%
Year: 2017
Duration: 39m
Genre: Documentaries, Social & Cultural Documentaries
This documentary follows three women — a fire chief, a judge and a street missionary — as they battle West Virginia’s devastating opioid epidemic.
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20) 13 Reasons Why: Beyond the Reasons
New on Netflix Rating: 80.5%
Year: 2018
Duration: 2 Seasons
Genre: TV Programmes, American Programmes, US TV Documentaries, Documentary Programmes, Crime TV Documentaries, Crime Documentaries, Documentaries
Cast members, writers, producers and mental health professionals discuss some of the difficult issues and themes explored in “13 Reasons Why.”
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About MaFt

Film and TV fan, creator of New On Netflix (UK, USA, Australia and Canada), dad of two amazing children, code geek and passionate about autism.

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