All Hail Netflix: Top Three Documentaries You Have to See (According to Me)

documentary-genre

Welcome back to the randomness! What is on deck today?

Documentaries I Love and Netflix Will Never Let Me Forget I Love

Netflix owns me. All hail Netflix.

What? What was that? Anyway, I have been watching many documentaries lately. As much as I love fictional stories, nothing beats a documentary. Documentaries are a gateway to worlds that I have never heard about. There are so many good documentaries out there but I want to talk about my top three that are available on Netflix right now.

Even if your first reaction to documentaries is ugh. Seriously. Hear me out on these three. They are worth the watch.

Top Three Documentaries on Netflix (in order of importance)

Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son about His Father (2008)

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I cannot write much about this documentary in terms of plot because it is important for people to experience the plot and emotions without any preconceptions. What I can tell you is very little.

The filmmaker, Kurt Kuenne’s best friend Andrew Bagby was killed in cold blood by his ex-girlfriend Shirley Turner. She ran away to Newfoundland but was caught and charged with the crime. She was let out on bail there while awaiting extradition. Meanwhile, she held a press conference announcing she was pregnant with Andrew Bagby’s child. Now Andrew’s parents have to play nice with the woman who killed their only son so they can see their grandson, Zachary. As time goes on…things take a turn.

You will need tissues. This is a very simplistic statement. I needed to stop the documentary, grab a pillow, and scream into it during certain parts. I was so upset and angry at what was happening to this lovely family I needed to express it. I also cried my eyes out. Do not let that deter you from watching.

After you watch this documentary (and you should watch) go to the Dear Zachary website for some updates. From this film came lots of good for other families that might find themselves in the same position as the Bagby’s did. This documentary is incredibly effective. It will pull at your heartstrings in ways that you never expected.

Just promise me you will not spoil it and look up the plot points of the internet. Promise?

 

 

June 17th 1994: ESPN Films 30 for 30 Series(2010)

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Yes. A sports documentary. Did not expect that one did you? Neither did I. (Tone shift alert!).

I came across the 30 for 30 Series on Netflix by accident. 30 for 30 is a place for filmmakers who want to cover specific events in sports history. It airs under the ESPN and their sister networks.

This documentary is about one day in time. June 17th 1994. This documentary has no talking heads or people to describe what is happening. It takes found footage of events and pieces them together so we, the audience, can put together our own stories, opinions and ideas about the day. It is awesome filmmaking technique.

The day covers Arnold Palmers final U.S. Open, FIFA World Cup, New York Rangers celebrating their Stanley Cup win, Game 5 of NBA Finals, Ken Griffey tying Babe Ruths record and the famous O.J. Simpson Bronco Chase. All of these events are tied together to create one hell of a day. Not only are the events used to create tension and drama, local newscasters, the general public and telephone calls are used to tie the stories together.

Even if you lived through this day or just barely remember, this film brings back the events of the day so clearly it was like you were their experiencing it. I was really interested in all the extra O.J. Simpson footage the movie used. As someone who was about 7 or 8 years old I have no recollection about this day. However after this film I feel like I could have been there…watching it all.

Scatter my Ashes at Bergdorf’s (2013)

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Another tonal shift. I am just full of surprises.  This fashion documentary looks at one of New York City’s famous luxury good department stores, Bergdorf Goodman.  Through interviews from store executives, employees, celebrities and designers, the movie paints of picture of how fast Bergdorf’s has become the store it has become today.

What I found the most fascinating was the business aspect of the fashion industry. The amount of time and money that goes into the business of running a luxury goods department store is staggering. It looks at this business from the department stores, the consumer and the designers end.  It was cool to see this glamourous business from different angles.

I like this documentary more for the business and numbers side than the look at their than their clothing and hiring practices..  I still recommend it because it is a bird’s eye look at a New York landmark. I have to look into a world that I would never had access to otherwise.

There are so many other documentaries that I like but I think I proved my point. Documentaries are a great way of discovering places and events you normally would not meet or known about.  I think I will always have a soft spot for documentaries for this reason alone.

What are your favorite documentaries? True crime fan or do you enjoy those documentaries that are light and airy? Tell me below! For now, the randomness has ended. Hope you enjoyed!

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