Best Documentaries for Those in Need

Katie Nichols, Senior Editor

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In my free time (aside from writing and critiquing media), I love to watch documentaries– I try to watch at least 2 a week; I believe it is always good to learn something of some sort. All of my buddies ask for recommendations, so I decided to give them a few that I really enjoyed. Keep in mind: documentaries are informative with hints of persuasion embedded, so I’m not recommending these as a rhetorical device but as a source of entertainment and knowledge for those who may be interested.


Emotional Docs:

Child of Rage: explores the deep psychological issues of an adopted 5-year-old with homicidal tendencies towards her newfound family

Blackfish: exposes unfair treatment to Killer Whales and the corruption of SeaWorld towards animals and staff members

Too Young to Die: a series that captures the stories of impactful celebrities who died young while making a difference in the world

Nazi Concentration Camps: depicts real shocking footage of horrifying concentration camps after liberation


Psychology/Health Docs:

The Stanford Prison Experiment: a movie about the real controversial experiment of Dr. Philip Zimbardo at Stanford University

The Woman with 7 Personalities: a homemade doc about a woman with MPD who suffered deep and irreversible trauma

The Experimenter: a movie that circulates around the experiments of Stanley Milgram (aka, “The Milgram Effect in psychology)

The Nightmare: explores the deep reality of night terrors and the things that most people suffering from them have in common with one another

Attacking the Devil: sheds light on the epidemic of the use of controversial drug thalidomide and its shocking effects on children born from mothers who took it

Religious or Political Docs:

Reversing Roe: discusses different viewpoints on the subject of abortion, and efforts made in courtrooms to promote/halt it.

Holy Hell: exposes the shocking and abused lives of those in the Buddhafield Cult in California, filmed by one of the members who captured hundreds of footage

Jesus Camp: explores the ideas of the Pentecostal evangelical children and the Republican party, how it is ingrained in children’s minds by adults in their church

Lake of Fire: a documentary shot in black and white that centralizes on the heated issue of abortion among Americans

Scientology: Going Clear: talks about the workings of L. Ron Hubbard as a Sci-Fi writer and the cult-like activities the corrupt Church of Scientology exposed and put its members through

Prophet’s Prey: sheds light on the followers of Warren Jeffs, a cult leader who participated in numerous forms of abuse and led the FLDS.

The Most Hated Woman in America: a movie that clearly demonstrates the story of activist Madalyn Murray O’Hair: the woman who had prayer banned from public schools.


Music Docs/Films:

Amy: the story of the life and death of Amy Winehouse shown through multiple home videos and interviews with those close to her

Janis: Little Girl Blue: highlights of the musical career of Janis Joplin in the 1960s up until her death from the struggle of alcoholism and heroin

Woodstock… The Movie: documentary that captures the musical event known as Woodstock in ways of live footage, interviews with the artists, and performances

The Doors: When You’re Strange: rare exclusive footage from the rock band, The Doors, in the 1960s and 1970s, when they were in their prime

Walk the Line: this movie circulates around the life story of Johnny Cash, through issues with June Carter, drug abuse, prison, and of course, making music

About the Writer
Katie Nichols, Sr. Editor

As Senior Editor of The Posted Paw, Katie Nichols has been on staff since her sophomore year, and enjoys many artistic activities and the satisfaction...

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