Documentary films serve as a great digital and visual craft made to understand and unearth historical events of significance, past tragic occurrences, biographies and profound truths. There cannot be a better way of gaining knowledge especially in this digital era. Here’s a look at the top 5 documentary films of all time:
O.J.: Made in America
A 2017 documentary produced and directed by Ezra Edelman is about the life and legacy of football star OJ Simpson from the start of his career to his popularity as a football player to his trial for the murders of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and friend Ron Goldman in 1994, acquittal, and imprisonment for another crime 13 years later. This incredible documentary highlights racism and American culture through the life of Simpson. The documentary won the Academy Award in 1946 for Best Documentary Feature at the 89th Academy Awards. The movie can be watched for its portrayal of American culture and racism.
Man on Wire
A 2008 documentary film directed by James Mars chronicles a French high-wire artist Philippe Petit’s high-wire walk between the Twin Towers of New York’s World Trade Center on 7 August 1974. Petit’s performance had lasted almost one hour and the title of the film is adapted from the police report that led to arrest and later release of Petit. The film received great critical acclaim and won several awards including the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature at the 81st Academy Awards.
Life in a Day
A 2011 documentary directed by Kevin Macdonald is a great concept in film making. The film showcases the series of original video clips that were submitted to YouTube. The clips selected from 80,000 clips show occurrences from around the globe on a single day on 24 July 2010. The film incorporates scenes selected of footage from 192 nations. Made very ingeniously, the movie leaves the viewer to reflect on the humorous, tragic and ordinary moments of everyday life. It can be enjoyed for its novel concept.
Seeds of Destiny
A 1946 documentary directed by David Miller is about the plight of millions of children in the wake of the Holocaust who were homeless, parentless, orphaned, and in poor health. Considered to be the most brutal act in the history of mankind, the Holocaust occurred during World War II in which Nazi Germany murdered approximately 6 million European Jews. This 20-minute film produced by the Defense Department of The US Army War Department won the Oscar for Best Documentary Short Subject in 1946. It throws great light on tragic events in wake of the Holocaust and is a must watch for history lovers.
I Am Alive: Surviving the Andes Plane Crash
A 2010 documentary directed by Brad Osborne is a recreation of an air crash in Andes Mountains followed by the victim’s struggle and determination to survive. On October 13, 1972 the Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 was carrying 45 people, including a rugby union team, their friends and family crashed in the remote Andes in extremely heavy snowpack of minus 34.765 degrees latitude. Narrated from the viewpoint of survivor Nando Parrado, the film showcases the struggle to survive in the mountains for 72-days while feeding on the dead people’s bodies and then followed by a 37-mile trek out of the mountains. The documentary fathoms the extent to which human survival instincts can help him/ her win over any despairing situation in life.