Non-Fiction

by sofiadorrell | created - 12 Aug 2015 | updated - 12 Aug 2015 | Public

Non-fiction film from the Harvard Film PhD Program

 Refine See titles to watch instantly, titles you haven't rated, etc
  • Instant Watch Options
  • Genres
  • Movies or TV
  • IMDb Rating
  • In Theaters
  • On TV
  • Release Year
  • Keywords








IMDb user rating (average) to
Number of votes to »




Reset



Reset
Release year or range to »




































































































1. Manhatta (1921)

Not Rated | 11 min | Documentary, Short

This groundbreaking silent documentary captures the beauty and majesty of the New York City in its streets, skyscrapers, bridges, rail yards and harbors.

Directors: Charles Sheeler, Paul Strand

Votes: 1,406

2. Berlin: Symphony of a Great City (1927)

Not Rated | 65 min | Documentary

This movie shows us one day in Berlin, the rhythm of that time, starting at the earliest morning and ends in the deepest night.

Director: Walter Ruttmann | Star: Paul von Hindenburg

Votes: 4,087

3. Olympia Part One: Festival of the Nations (1938)

Not Rated | 111 min | Documentary, Sport

The document of the 1936 Olympics at Berlin.

Director: Leni Riefenstahl | Stars: David Albritton, Arvo Askola, Jack Beresford, Erwin Blask

Votes: 4,485

4. Olympia Part Two: Festival of Beauty (1938)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary, Sport

The document of the 1936 Olympics at Berlin, orchestrated as Nazi propaganda.

Director: Leni Riefenstahl | Stars: Sheigo Arai, Jack Beresford, Ralf Berzsenyi, Ferenc Csík

Votes: 3,706

5. The Eternal Jew (1940)

62 min | Documentary, History

Under the guise of a brutally honest documentary, this malevolent propaganda film aims to be an "indispensable tool in the hands of the Aryan race", designed to depict the "true" Jew when the masks of western civilisation fall off.

Director: Fritz Hippler | Stars: Curt Bois, Charles Chaplin, Albert Einstein, Adolf Hitler

Votes: 3,538

6. Listen to Britain (1942)

Not Rated | 20 min | Documentary, Short

A depiction of life in wartime England during the Second World War. Director Humphrey Jennings visits many aspects of civilian life and of the turmoil and privation caused by the war, all without narration.

Directors: Humphrey Jennings, Stewart McAllister | Stars: Leonard Brockington, Joseph Macleod, Bud Flanagan, Chesney Allen

Votes: 1,598

7. Why We Fight (1942)

Not Rated | 52 min | Documentary, War

The official World War II US Government film statement defining the various enemies of the Allies and why they must be fought.

Directors: Frank Capra, Anatole Litvak | Stars: Walter Huston, Victor Bulwer-Lytton, Kai-Shek Chiang, Walter Darré

Votes: 2,057

8. San Pietro (1945)

Unrated | 32 min | Documentary, Short, War

Director John Huston documents the Battle of San Pietro Infine in December 1943.

Director: John Huston | Stars: Mark W. Clark, John Huston

Votes: 2,090

9. Let There Be Light (1980)

Not Rated | 58 min | Documentary, War

A group of mentally traumatized veteran patients is followed as they go through psychiatric treatment.

Director: John Huston | Stars: Walter Huston, Benjamin Simon

Votes: 1,686

10. Kon-Tiki (1950)

Approved | 77 min | Documentary

A documentary about the Kon-Tiki expedition of the Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl.

Director: Thor Heyerdahl | Stars: Thor Heyerdahl, Herman Watzinger, Erik Hesselberg, Knut Haugland

Votes: 2,409

11. Blood of the Beasts (1949)

22 min | Documentary, Short

Bucolic scenes from the outskirts of Paris are contrasted with stark footage from slaughterhouses.

Director: Georges Franju | Stars: Georges Hubert, Nicole Ladmiral, Alfred Macquart, Maurice Griselle

Votes: 2,258

12. Free Cinema (1986 TV Movie)

53 min | Documentary

Survey of the British 'Free Cinema' movement, remarkable for the narrator's wit and clarity of vision.

Directors: Lindsay Anderson, Jeremy McCracken | Star: Lindsay Anderson

Votes: 11

13. CBS Reports (1959– )
Episode: Harvest of Shame (1960)

60 min | Documentary, News

In this CBS News production broadcast on Thanksgiving 1960, Edward R. Murrow points out the plight of migrant farm workers in America. Topics range from the harsh living conditions, endless... See full summary »

Director: Fred W. Friendly | Stars: Edward R. Murrow, Harriet Beeman, Michael Cassidy, Louis Cramp

Votes: 159

14. The Lovely Month of May (1963)

Not Rated | 165 min | Documentary

Chris Marker and Pierre Lhomme's LE JOLI MAI (The Lovely Month of May) is a portrait of Paris and Parisians during May 1962, the first springtime of peace after the ceasefire with Algeria ... See full summary »

Directors: Chris Marker, Pierre Lhomme | Stars: Chris Marker, Yves Montand, Simone Signoret, Jean-Luc Godard

Votes: 713 | Gross: $0.02M

15. The War Game (1966 TV Movie)

48 min | Drama, War

A docudrama depicting a hypothetical nuclear attack on Britain.

Director: Peter Watkins | Stars: Michael Aspel, Peter Graham, Dave Baldwin, Kathy Staff

Votes: 6,390

16. Portrait of Jason (1967)

Not Rated | 105 min | Documentary, Biography

87 Metascore

Black gay prostitute Jason Holliday is rigorously interviewed on his story and character, revealing nuanced truths about life and art.

Director: Shirley Clarke | Stars: Jason Holliday, Shirley Clarke, Carl Lee

Votes: 1,076

17. Titicut Follies (1967)

Unrated | 84 min | Documentary

Documentary filmmaker Frederick Wiseman takes us inside the Massachusetts Correctional Institution Bridgewater where people stay trapped in their madness.

Director: Frederick Wiseman

Votes: 4,238

18. Bob Dylan: Dont Look Back (1967)

Not Rated | 96 min | Documentary, Music

84 Metascore

Documentary covering Bob Dylan's 1965 tour of England, which includes appearances by Joan Baez and Donovan.

Director: D.A. Pennebaker | Stars: Bob Dylan, Albert Grossman, Bob Neuwirth, Joan Baez

Votes: 8,680

19. The Sorrow and the Pity (1969)

PG | 251 min | Documentary, History, War

An in-depth exploration of the various reactions by the French people to the Vichy government's acceptance of Nazi invasion.

Director: Marcel Ophüls | Stars: Helmut Tausend, Marcel Verdier, Alexis Grave, Louis Grave

Votes: 3,606

20. Warrendale (1967)

100 min | Documentary

Chronicles 7-weeks in the lives of 12 emotionally disturbed children and their therapist's experimental method of treatment at the Toronto-area Warrendale facility.

Director: Allan King | Star: Martin Fischer

Votes: 513

21. A Married Couple (1969)

97 min | Documentary

An "actuality drama" about a real-life marriage in crisis, in which the couple attempts to identify and resolve the conflicts and resentments that have driven them to the brink of separation.

Director: Allan King | Stars: Billy Edwards, Antoinette Edwards, Bogart Edwards, Merton

Votes: 548

22. Woodstock (1970)

R | 184 min | Documentary, History, Music

95 Metascore

Oscar-winning musical chronicle that brilliantly captures the three-day rock concert and celebration of peace and love that became a capstone for the Sixties.

Director: Michael Wadleigh | Stars: Joan Baez, Richie Havens, Roger Daltrey, Joe Cocker

Votes: 16,236 | Gross: $50.00M

23. Far from Poland (1984)

106 min | Documentary

An attempt to cover Poland's Solidarity movement - the first independent labor union in a Soviet-bloc country inspired by the strikes at the Gdansk Shipyard in August 1980 - and its shaping... See full summary »

Director: Jill Godmilow | Stars: Ruth Maleczech, Mark Margolis, Olek Krupa, John Perkins

Votes: 37

24. Wanda Sykes: Tongue Untied (2003 TV Special)

TV-MA | 42 min | Comedy, Documentary

Wanda Sykes talks relationships, politics and strip clubs in her second stand-up special.

Director: Paul Miller | Star: Wanda Sykes

Votes: 182

25. Shoah (1985)

Not Rated | 566 min | Documentary, History, War

99 Metascore

Claude Lanzmann's epic documentary recounts the story of the Holocaust through interviews with witnesses - perpetrators as well as survivors.

Director: Claude Lanzmann | Stars: Simon Srebnik, Michael Podchlebnik, Motke Zaïdl, Hanna Zaïdl

Votes: 8,708 | Gross: $0.02M

26. Sherman's March (1985)

Not Rated | 157 min | Documentary, Biography, Comedy

Documentary filmmaker Ross McElwee sets out to make a movie about Union General Sherman's March to the Sea towards the end of the American Civil War, but keeps getting sidetracked by his own love life.

Director: Ross McElwee | Stars: Ross McElwee, Dede McElwee, Ross McElwee Jr., Patricia Rendleman

Votes: 2,404

27. Sans Soleil (1983)

Not Rated | 100 min | Documentary, Drama

A woman narrates the contemplative writings of a seasoned world traveler, focusing on contemporary Japan.

Director: Chris Marker | Stars: Amilcar Cabral, Florence Delay, Arielle Dombasle, Riyoko Ikeda

Votes: 9,949 | Gross: $0.03M

28. The Times of Harvey Milk (1984)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary, Biography, History

A documentary of the successful career and assassination of San Francisco's first elected gay city supervisor.

Director: Rob Epstein | Stars: Harvey Fierstein, Harvey Milk, Anne Kronenberg, Tory Hartmann

Votes: 5,749 | Gross: $0.01M

29. The Atomic Cafe (1982)

Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary, History

Disturbing collection of 1940s and 1950s United States government-issued propaganda films designed to reassure Americans that the atomic bomb was not a threat to their safety.

Directors: Jayne Loader, Kevin Rafferty, Pierce Rafferty | Stars: Paul Tibbets, Harry S. Truman, W.H.P. Blandy, Brien McMahon

Votes: 3,956 | Gross: $0.02M

30. Koyaanisqatsi (1982)

Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary, Music

72 Metascore

A collection of expertly photographed phenomena with no conventional plot. The footage focuses on nature, humanity and the relationship between them.

Director: Godfrey Reggio | Stars: Edward Asner, Pat Benatar, Jerry Brown, Johnny Carson

Votes: 36,184 | Gross: $1.72M

31. A Man, When He Is a Man (1982)

66 min | Documentary

What are the social climate and cultural traditions in Costa Rica which nurture "machismo" and allow the domination of women to continue in Latin America?

Director: Valeria Sarmiento

Votes: 23

32. To Be and to Have (2002)

Not Rated | 104 min | Documentary, Family

87 Metascore

A documentary portrait of a one-room school in rural France, where the students (ranging in age from 4 to 11) are educated by a single dedicated teacher.

Director: Nicolas Philibert | Stars: Georges Lopez, Alizé, Axel Thouvenin, Guillaume

Votes: 7,884 | Gross: $0.78M

33. Bus 174 (2002)

R | 122 min | Documentary, Crime

83 Metascore

On June 12, 2000, a young man with a gun took the passengers aboard Bus 174 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil hostage. This documentary examines the event itself, the resulting media frenzy, the police response, and the perpetrator's background.

Directors: José Padilha, Felipe Lacerda | Stars: Sandro do Nascimento, Rodrigo Pimentel, Luiz Eduardo Soares, Anonymous

Votes: 7,977 | Gross: $0.22M

34. The Fog of War (2003)

PG-13 | 107 min | Documentary, Biography, History

87 Metascore

The story of America as seen through the eyes of the former Secretary of Defense under President John F. Kennedy and President Lyndon B. Johnson, Robert McNamara.

Director: Errol Morris | Stars: Robert McNamara, John F. Kennedy, Fidel Castro, Richard Nixon

Votes: 23,046 | Gross: $4.20M

35. Bowling for Columbine (2002)

R | 120 min | Documentary, Crime, Drama

72 Metascore

Filmmaker Michael Moore explores the roots of America's predilection for gun violence.

Director: Michael Moore | Stars: Michael Moore, Charlton Heston, Marilyn Manson, Salvador Allende

Votes: 140,716 | Gross: $21.58M

36. Megacities (1998)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary

A look at the people who live precariously, but with an unusual level of resourcefulness and imagination, in four gigantic urban agglomerations: Mumbai, New York City, Moscow and Mexico City.

Director: Michael Glawogger

Votes: 941

37. Amsterdam Global Village (1996)

245 min | Documentary

This four hour documentary looks for the exotic in the everyday life observed in just one city, the filmmaker's own Amsterdam.

Director: Johan van der Keuken | Star: Julika Marijn

Votes: 121

38. Forgotten Silver (1995 TV Movie)

53 min | Comedy

The film deals with the career of a supposedly forgotten pioneer of international cinema, Colin McKenzie, who was allegedly born in rural New Zealand in 1888.

Directors: Costa Botes, Peter Jackson | Stars: Peter Jackson, Jeffrey Thomas, Costa Botes, Marguerite Hurst

Votes: 5,798 | Gross: $0.03M

39. From the East (1993)

107 min | Documentary

A look at life in Eastern Europe after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Director: Chantal Akerman | Star: Natalia Chakhovskaia

Votes: 695

40. Lessons of Darkness (1992)

Not Rated | 54 min | Documentary, War

This film shows the disaster of the Kuwaitian oil fields in flames, with few interviews and no explanatory narration. Hell itself is presented in such beautiful sights and music that one has to be fascinated by it.

Director: Werner Herzog | Star: Werner Herzog

Votes: 5,540

41. Videogramme einer Revolution (1992)

106 min | Documentary, History, War

This documentary uses news footage and amateur video to paint a vivid picture of Romania's 1989 revolution and the fall of dictator Nicolae Ceausescu.

Directors: Harun Farocki, Andrei Ujica | Stars: Ion Caramitru, Elena Ceausescu, Nicolae Ceausescu, Mircea Dinescu

Votes: 484

42. 28 Up (1984 TV Movie)

136 min | Documentary, Biography

Director Michael Apted interviews the same group of British-born adults after a 7 year wait as to the changes that have occurred in their lives during the last seven years.

Director: Michael Apted | Stars: Bruce Balden, Jacqueline Bassett, Symon Basterfield, Andrew Brackfield

Votes: 2,729

43. Paris Is Burning (1990)

R | 71 min | Documentary

82 Metascore

A chronicle of New York's drag scene in the 1980s, focusing on balls, voguing and the ambitions and dreams of those who gave the era its warmth and vitality.

Director: Jennie Livingston | Stars: Brooke Xtravaganza, André Christian, Dorian Corey, Paris Duprée

Votes: 13,466 | Gross: $3.78M

44. Black Harvest (1992)

Not Rated | 90 min | Documentary

Joe Leahy is the half-caste son of one of the first explorers of the Papua New Guinean interior. His relations with the local Ganiga tribe who work his coffee plantation on their land are ... See full summary »

Directors: Robin Anderson, Bob Connolly | Star: Joe Leahy

Votes: 186

45. Sweetgrass (2009)

Unrated | 101 min | Documentary, Adventure, Western

80 Metascore

In the summer of 2003, a group of shepherds took a herd of sheep one final time through the Beartooth Mountains of Montana, in the extreme north-west of the United States. It was a journey ... See full summary »

Directors: Ilisa Barbash, Lucien Castaing-Taylor

Votes: 970 | Gross: $0.21M