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Film Finders: Award-Winning Films: Documentaries

Documentaries

“Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn't.”-- Mark Twain

 

 

 

Originally called "actuality" films, the term documentary was not coined until 1926. Early travel documentaries, or travelogues, documented the lives of non-Western people and were mostly associated with anthropologic studies. In the 1960s, the Cinéma vérité or "truthful cinema" style of documentary filmmaking laid the foundation for the modern documentary:  include following a person during a crisis with a moving, often handheld, camera to capture more personal reactions. Today documentary filmmakers are increasingly utilizing social impact campaigns with their films. Social impact campaigns seek to leverage media projects by converting public awareness of social issues and causes into engagement and action, largely by offering the audience a way to get involved. 

 

Scroll down to look at Academy Award winners for Documentary Feature and Current TV's Top 50 Documentaries. 

 

 Feel free to click on listed call numbers for additional information from DELCAT Discovery.

 

Academy Award Winning Documentaries

  

2017-Winner & Nominees

Abacus: Small Enough to Jail, DVD 19487

Faces Places = Visages Villages, DVD 19521

Icarus

Last Men in Aleppo, DVD 19310

Strong Island

2016-O.J.: Made in America, DVD 17963

2015-Amy, DVD 16901

2014-Citizenfour; DVD 16559HDDVD 421

2013-20 Feet from Stardom, DVD 14141   

2012-Searching for Sugar Man, DVD 12658

2011-Undefeated, DVD 12885

2010-Inside Job, DVD 9329; HDDVD 88

2009-The Cove, DVD 7042

2008-Man on Wire, DVD 5796

2007-Taxi to the Dark Side, DVD 5543

2006-An Inconvenient Truth, DVD 3014

2005-March of the Penguins, DVD 2246

2004-Born into Brothels, DVD 2078

2003-The Fog of War, DVD 1036

2002-Bowling for Columbine, DVD 707;

DVD 1628

2001-Murder on a Sunday Morning, DVD 4118

2000-Into the Arms of Strangers: Stories of the

Kindertransport, DVD 521

1999-One Day in September, DVD 446

1998-The Last Days, DVD 265

1997-The Long Way Home, DVD 13918 disc 6

1996-When We Were Kings, DVD 13680

1995-Anne Frank Remembered, DVD 1138

1994-Maya Lin: A Strong Clear Vision, DVD 13948

1993-I Am a Promise: The Children of Stanton

Elementary School, DVD 6126

1992-The Panama Deception, DVD 4791

1991-In the Shadow of the Stars, DVD 14037

1990-American Dream, DVD 833

1989-Common Threads: Stories from the Quilt,

DVD 14160

1988-Hotel Terminus: The Life and Times of

Klaus Barbie, DVD 8742

1987-The Ten-Year Lunch: The Wit and Legend

of the Algonquin Round Table

1986-(tie) Artie Shaw: Time is All You’ve Got

(tie) Down and Out in America, VHS 2342

1985-Broken Rainbow, DVD 14036

1984-The Times of Harvey Milk, DVD 2731

 

1983-He Makes Me Feel Like Dancin’

1982-Just Another Missing Kid

1981-Genocide: The Story of Man’s Inhumanity to Man,

 DVD 13918 disc 3

1980-From Mao to Mozart: Isaac Stern in China,

DVD 14094

1979-Best Boy, DVD 11159

1978-Scared Straight!, DVD 14195

1977-Who Are The DeBolts? And Where Did

They Get Nineteen Kids?

1976-Harlan County, USA, DVD 2639

1975-The Man Who Skied Down Everest

1974-Hearts and Minds, DVD 1597

1973-The Great American Cowboy

1972-Marjoe

1971-The Hellstrom Chronicle

1970-Woodstock, DVD 26; HDDVD 59

1969-Arthur Rubinstein-The Love of Life=

 L'Amour de la vie – Artur Rubinstein

1968-Journey into Self

1967-The Anderson Platoon, VHS 925

1966-The War Game, DVD 10910

1965-The Eleanor Roosevelt Story, eVideo

1964-World Without Sun= Le Monde sans soleil

1963-Robert Frost: A Lover’s Quarrel with the

World, DVD 12854

1962-Black Fox: The Rise and Fall of Adolf Hitler

1961-The Sky Above-The Mud Below, DVD 9162 disc 3

1960-The Horse with the Flying Tail

1959-Serengeti Shall Not Die

1958-White Wilderness

1957-Albert Schweitzer

1956-The Silent World= Le Monde du silence

1955-Helen Keller in Her Story

1954-The Vanishing Prairie

1953-The Living Desert

1952-The Sea Around Us

1951-Kon-Tiki, DVD 13400

1950-The Titan: Story of Michelangelo

1949-Daybreak in Udi

1948-The Secret Land

1947-Design for Death

1946-no award given

1945-The True Glory, DVD 4762 disc 2

1944-The Fighting Lady, DVD 13436

1943-Desert Victory, VHS 9265

Current TV's Top 50 Documentaries

Feel free to scroll over the titles for additional information from DELCAT Discovery.  

 

Academy Award Nominated

Academy Award Winner

 

Compiled by editors from the Current TV television network, this list features 50 of the most influential and/or important documentary films from the past 25 years.

 

 

1. Hoop Dreams, dir. Steve James (1994); DVD 1729

2. The Thin Blue Line, dir. Errol Morris (1988); DVD 1843

3. Roger & Me, dir. Michael Moore (1989); DVD 1175

4. Waltz with Bashir, dir. Ari Folman (2008); DVD 6266

5. Super Size Me, dir. Morgan Spurlock (2004); DVD 1259

6. The War Room, dirs. Chris Hegedus and

      D.A. Pennebaker (1993); DVD 1262

7. The Celluloid Closet, dirs. Rob Epstein and

     Jeffrey Friedman (1995); DVD 2706

8. An Inconvenient Truth, dir. Davis Guggenheim

      (2006); DVD 3014

9. Trouble the Water, dirs. Tia Lessin and Carl Deal

      (2008); DVD 6520

10. Grizzly Man, dir. Werner Herzog (2005); DVD 2354

11. Paris Is Burning, dir. Jennie Livingston (1990);

       DVD 7768

12. Bowling for Columbine, dir. Michael Moore

      (2002); DVD 707; DVD 1628

13. The Fog of War, dir. Errol Morris (2003); DVD 1036

14. Dark Days, dir. Marc Singer (2000); DVD 4987

15. Crumb, dir. Terry Zwigoff (1994); DVD 7061

16. Bus 174, dirs. José Padilha and Felipe Lacerda

      (2002); DVD 1363

17. Street Fight, dir. Marshall Curry (2005); DVD 2403

18. Food, Inc., dir. Robert Kenner (2008); DVD 6900;

       HDDVD 55

19. Touching the Void, dir. Kevin Macdonald (2003);

       DVD 1017

20. Capturing the Friedmans, dir. Andrew Jarecki (2003);

       DVD 826

21. Exit Through the Gift Shop, dir. Banksy (2010);

       DVD 8612

22. Dixie Chicks: Shut Up and Sing, dirs. Barbara Kopple

       and Cecilia Peck (2006)-DVD 3419

23. The Eyes of Tammy Faye, dir. Fenton Bailey (2000);

       DVD 526

24. Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood

       Hills,dirs. Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky

       (1996); DVD 2127

25. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, dir.

       Alex Gibney (2005); DVD 2349

26. Murderball, dirs. Henry Alex Rubin and Dana Adam

      Shapiro (2005); DVD 2253

27. Tarnation, by Jonathan Caouette (2003); DVD 2421

28. Gasland, by Josh Fox (2010); DVD 8565

29. Man on Wire, by James Marsh (2008); DVD 5796

30. Fahrenheit 9/11, by Michael Moore (2004); DVD 1483

31. Jesus Camp, dirs. Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing

       (2006); DVD 3208

32. Dogtown and Z-Boys, dir. Stacy Peralta (2001);

        DVD 1506

33. Tongues Untied, dir. Marlon Riggs (1989); DVD 3568

34. Brother's Keeper, dirs. Joe Berlinger and Bruce

        Sinofsky (1992); DVD 7015

35. Paragraph 175, dirs. Rob Epstein and Jeffrey

       Friedman (2000); DVD 9041

36. Taxi to the Dark Side, dir. Alex Gibney (2007);

       DVD 5543

37. Inside Job, dir. Charles H. Ferguson (2010);

       DVD 9329; HDDVD 88

38. March of the Penguins, dir. Luc Jacquet

       (2005); DVD 2246

39. Biggie & Tupac, dir. Nick Broomfield (2002); DVD 761

40. When We Were Kings, dir. Leon Gast (1996);

        DVD 13680

41. The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters, dir. Seth

       Gordon (2007); DVD 655

42. Catfish, dirs. Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman

       (2010); DVD 8776

43. When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts,

        dir. Spike Lee (2006); DVD 3180

44. Burma VJ, dir. Anders Østergaard (2008);

       DVD 8262

45. The Decline of Western Civilization Part II:

The Metal Years, dir. Penelope Spheeris (1988); DVD 16371

46. Little Dieter Needs to Fly, dir. Werner Herzog

         (1998)-DVD 4568

47. One Day in September, dir. Kevin Macdonald (1999);

        DVD 446

48. The Kid Stays in the Picture, dirs. Nanette Burstein

         and Brett Morgen (2002); DVD 2623

49. Madonna: Truth or Dare, dir. Alek Keshishian

       (1991); DVD 9971

50. Spellbound, dir. Jeffrey Blitz; DVD 944

Subject Guide

Meghann Matwichuk's picture
Meghann Matwichuk
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