Best Documentaries Ranked by Tomatometer


Young@Heart (2007)

Adjusted Score: 90.806%
Critics Consensus: Full of endearing characters, this doc about a choir of "seniors behaving badly" is uplifting and delightful.
Synopsis: The Young@Heart Chorus is a vocal group from Northampton, MA, who have earned an international reputation for their unique interpretations... [More]

Adjusted Score: 92.704%
Critics Consensus: Though ostensibly an intimate look at the Dixie Chicks after their 2003 anti-Bush remark, the film achieves broader relevance by exploring how media, politics, and celebrities intertwine.
Synopsis: In 2003, Dixie Chicks lead singer Natalie Maines told a London concert audience that they were "ashamed the President of... [More]
Directed By: Barbara Kopple

Adjusted Score: 92.879%
Critics Consensus: Gripping, heartbreaking, and ultimately hopeful, Waiting for Superman is an impassioned indictment of the American school system from An Inconvenient Truth director Davis Guggenheim.
Synopsis: Every morning, in big cities, suburbs and small towns across America, parents send their children off to school with the... [More]
Directed By: Davis Guggenheim

Adjusted Score: 91.951%
Critics Consensus: Fascinating behind-the-scenes look at how Metallica survives one of their more turbulent periods.
Synopsis: A music documentary about the trials and tribulations of the heavy metal group Metallica as they cut their first album... [More]

Adjusted Score: 91.983%
Critics Consensus: A searing indictment of big business and greed, Who Killed The Electric Car? is a well-tuned doc that simultaneously entertains and enrages.
Synopsis: An investigation into the death and resurrection of the electric car, as well as the role of renewable energy and... [More]
Directed By: Chris Paine

Adjusted Score: 92.173%
Critics Consensus: Whether you think this mentally ill cult musician is worthy of being called a "genius," this document of his life is crafted with sincere respect and is fascinating to watch.
Synopsis: The Devil and Daniel Johnston is a stunning portrait of a musical genius that nearly slipped away. It depicts a... [More]
Directed By: Jeff Feuerzeig


The Corporation (2004)

Adjusted Score: 92.534%
Critics Consensus: The Corporation is a satisfyingly dense, thought-provoking rebuttal to some of capitalism's central arguments.
Synopsis: One hundred and fifty years ago, the corporation was a relatively insignificant entity. Today, it is a vivid, dramatic and... [More]


Tim's Vermeer (2014)

Adjusted Score: 93.049%
Critics Consensus: Entertaining and profound in equal measure, Tim's Vermeer uses its seemingly esoteric subject to pose fascinating questions about art and obsession.
Synopsis: Tim Jenison, a Texas based inventor, (Video Toaster, LightWave, TriCaster) attempts to solve one of the greatest mysteries in all... [More]
Directed By: Teller

Adjusted Score: 93.693%
Critics Consensus: Though not objective by any means, The Kid Stays in the Picture is irresistibly entertaining.
Synopsis: Robert Evans' rise from second-string actor (who really was discovered while lounging by the pool at the Beverly Hills Hotel)... [More]


Tarnation (2004)

Adjusted Score: 94.309%
Critics Consensus: Using music and home video footage to great effect, Jonathan Caouette has made a very personal and moving film.
Synopsis: Part documentary, part narrative fiction, part home movie, and part acid trip. A psychedelic whirlwind of snapshots, Super-8 home movies,... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Caouette

Adjusted Score: 93.452%
Critics Consensus: Penetrating Rivers' coarse image, this compelling documentary offers an honest, behind-the-scenes look at her career -- and at show business in general.
Synopsis: A glimpse into the comedic process and private dramas of legendary comedian and pop icon Joan Rivers as she fights... [More]
Directed By: Ricki Stern, Anne Sundberg


Into The Abyss (2011)

Adjusted Score: 94.764%
Critics Consensus: Another probing, insightful look at an interesting subject, Werner Herzog explores the American prison system with passion and not politics.
Synopsis: In his fascinating exploration of a triple homicide case in Conroe, Texas, master filmmaker Werner Herzog probes the human psyche... [More]
Directed By: Werner Herzog


Senna (2011)

Adjusted Score: 94.966%
Critics Consensus: Even for filmgoers who aren't racing fans, Senna offers heart-pounding thrills -- and heartbreaking emotion.
Synopsis: Spanning his years as a Formula One racing driver from 1984 to his untimely death a decade later, Senna explores... [More]
Directed By: Asif Kapadia


Tabloid (2011)

Adjusted Score: 94.966%
Critics Consensus: It's far from his most thought-provoking work, but Tabloid finds Errol Morris as smart, spirited, and engaging as ever.
Synopsis: Thirty years before the antics of Lindsay Lohan and Britney Spears were regular gossip fodder, Miss Wyoming Joyce McKinney made... [More]
Directed By: Errol Morris

Adjusted Score: 95.741%
Critics Consensus: Dave Chappelle's Block Party is a raucous return to the spotlight for the comic, buoyed by witty, infectious humor and outstanding musical performances.
Synopsis: A genuine crowd-pleaser, "Dave Chappelle's Block Party" spotlights comedy superstar Dave Chappelle as he presents a Brooklyn neighborhood with its... [More]
Directed By: Michel Gondry


Grizzly Man (2005)

Adjusted Score: 96.276%
Critics Consensus: Whatever opinion you come to have of the obsessive Treadwell, Herzog has once again found a fascinating subject.
Synopsis: This documentary centers on amateur grizzly bear expert Timothy Treadwell, who periodically journeyed to Alaska to study and live with... [More]
Directed By: Werner Herzog


Super Size Me (2004)

Adjusted Score: 96.461%
Critics Consensus: Entertaining doc about the adverse effects of eating fast food.
Synopsis: Why are Americans so fat? Two words: fast food. What would happen if you ate nothing but fast food for... [More]
Directed By: Morgan Spurlock


Sicko (2007)

Adjusted Score: 98.981%
Critics Consensus: Driven by Michael Moore's sincere humanism, Sicko is a devastating, convincing, and very entertaining documentary about the state of America's health care.
Synopsis: Acclaimed filmmaker Michael Moore sets out to investigate the American healthcare system. Sticking to his tried-and-true one-man approach, Moore sheds... [More]
Directed By: Michael Moore


The Gatekeepers (2013)

Adjusted Score: 97.602%
Critics Consensus: Strikingly stark, brutally honest, and rivetingly assembled, The Gatekeepers offers essential perspective on a seemingly intractable war from some of the men who fought it.
Synopsis: Charged with overseeing Israel's war on terror-both Palestinian and Jewish- the head of the Shin Bet, Israel's secret service is... [More]
Directed By: Dror Moreh


Tickled (2016)

Adjusted Score: 97.571%
Critics Consensus: Tickled uses an investigation into a silly-seeming subculture as the launching point for thought-provoking insights into online bullying and the destructive abilities of the internet.
Synopsis: After stumbling upon a bizarre "competitive endurance tickling" video online, wherein young men are paid to be tied up and... [More]
Directed By: David Farrier, Dylan Reeve

Adjusted Score: 97.037%
Critics Consensus: Effectively stirring and bolstered by thrilling visuals, The Eagle Huntress uses its heartwarming message to fill up a feature that might have made for an even more powerful short film.
Synopsis: THE EAGLE HUNTRESS follows Aisholpan, a 13-year-old girl, as she trains to become the first female in twelve generations of... [More]
Directed By: Otto Bell

Adjusted Score: 98.145%
Critics Consensus: This candid, powerful and informative documentary illuminates some of the myths surrounding its dual subjects: global warming and Al Gore.
Synopsis: Humanity is sitting on a time bomb. If the vast majority of the world's scientists are right, we have just... [More]
Directed By:

Adjusted Score: 96.277%
Critics Consensus: Delightful and strangely moving.
Synopsis: Directed by Luigi Falomi and Mongolian documentary maker Byambasuren Davaa, Die Geschichte vom Weinenden Kamel (The Story of the Weeping... [More]

Adjusted Score: 97.064%
Critics Consensus: Encounters at the End of the World offers a poignant study of the human psyche amid haunting landscapes.
Synopsis: Werner Herzog confirms his standing as poet laureate of men in extreme situations with "Encounters at the End of the... [More]
Directed By: Werner Herzog

Adjusted Score: 98.434%
Critics Consensus: The Queen of Versailles is a timely, engaging, and richly drawn portrait of the American Dream improbably composed of equal parts compassion and schadenfreude.
Synopsis: The Queen of Versailles is a character-driven documentary about a billionaire family and their financial challenges in the wake of... [More]
Directed By: Lauren Greenfield

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