What are the Netflix's 10 Must-Watch Documentaries That Will Change the Way You See the World?

Netflix recently published a list of the 10 must-watch documentaries they currently have on their platform. Whether you’re looking to watch something serious, funny, or thought-provoking, these documentaries will do the trick and then some! 
Here are Netflix’s top 10 must-watch documentaries that will change the way you see the world.

10 must-watch Netflix Documentaries that will change the way you see the world.

10) Seaspiracy (2021)

Leonardo DiCaprio-backed documentary "Seaspiracy" was released on Netflix, to commentary from viewers and industry experts alike. The film, directed by Ali Tabrizi, explores topics such as plastic pollution, commercial whaling, and the human rights of the fishing industry.

The documentary raises some very real and important points about the dangers of overfishing, combined with a sensational narrative.  What are the facts, and what are we able to learn from the film?

Directed byAli Tabrizi
Distributed byNetflix
Release date March 24, 2021 (Netflix)
Running time89 minutes
Language English

Review of Seaspiracy 2021 Documentary on the Web:

IMDbRotten TomatoesGoogle Users
8.1/10 (‎30,779 votes)75% (‎8 votes)96% liked this film

9) The Social Dilemma (2020)

Netflix documentary-drama "The Social Dilemma" has stirred some to abandon their social media accounts but has little chance of undermining the giants it takes on.

According to "The Social Dilemma," the Internet's most popular products use a basic business model of tracking users' behavior to sell targeted ads and induce addiction. 
A combination of interviews with technology experts, including former employees of Silicon Valley giants, and PSA-style dramatic scenarios are used in the film to highlight the negative impacts of social media on average Americans.  As well as other issues, the film discusses how tech companies influence elections, ethnic violence, depression, and suicide rates. 

Interviewees in "The Social Dilemma" end by imploring viewers to "change the conversation" around technology.

Though there have been explanations from technology experts as to how effective they and their companies have been at leveraging human psychology to benefit from sales and subscriptions. Such speeches ultimately seem duller because it seems that the industry itself can't do more. The Social Dilemma still seems to place responsibility on us, the users, rather than those who ought to take a greater share.

Directed byJeff Orlowski
Distributed byNetflix
Release date September 9, 2020 (United States)
Running time94 minutes
CountryUnited States
Language English

Review of The Social Dilemma 2020 Documentary/Docudrama on the Web:

IMDbRotten TomatoesMetacriticGoogle Users
7.6/10 (‎81,828 votes)85% (‎68 votes)78%94% liked this film

8) The Mind, Explained (2019)

Explained has returned after almost a year of work behind the scenes. And this year, we are tackling a vital issue: 

  • What is in the refrigerator that we cannot remember?
  • Why, on average, is one in three people affected by anxiety disorders?
  • Or, what is the reason we can't remember most of the details of our own lives? 
  • We see strange images before we go to sleep at night. Do our dreams have any real meaning or significance?

The brand-new, five-part series, The Mind, Explained, explores this topic. Frequently, our thoughts are like dark boxes. Additionally, the stakes are high when we ask questions.

Genre Docuseries
Narrated byEmma Stone (S1), Julianne Moore  (S2)
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons2
No. of episodes10
Running time19–21 minutes
Original networkNetflix
Original releaseSeptember 12, 2019

Review of The Mind, Explained 2019 Documentary  on the Web:

IMDbGoogle Users
8/10 (‎5,374 votes)88% liked this TV show

7)  Downfall: The Case against Boeing (2022)

Netflix is releasing "Downfall: The Case against Boeing" soon. We see that many mishaps change how we perceive things forever. Those mishaps can also be the result of greed and a constant desire for more power or money. We cannot determine the purpose behind tasks in the corporate world. They could, of course, be deceptive as well, but then we're taking a risk.

The film is about two flights, Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302. The distinctive part of this crash is that both the Boeing's of the respective flights had the newly designed 'MAX 737 aircraft.'  The crashes of both these flights made many people believe that modern aviation was more of a hazard than a utility.

Directed byRory Kennedy
Distributed byNetflix
Release date February 18, 2022
Running time89 minutes
CountryUnited States
Language English

Review of Downfall: The Case Against Boeing 2022 Documentary  on the Web:

IMDbRotten TomatoesGoogle Users
7.4/10 (‎10,812 votes)91% (‎32 votes)86% liked this film

6) Abstract: The Art of Design (2017)

The Netflix series "Abstract: The Art of Design" made its debut in 2017. The premiere season of the show, which was nominated for an Emmy, laid bare the creative processes of emerging designers in several disparate fields.  The show also introduced an idea that has endured through the second season design is a method that any person can learn and apply in almost any industry.

This means that an excellent design can be found anywhere, no matter where we are or what we are doing.  Through creative thinking, even the best designers want to make sure that their designs go unnoticed but maintain the simplicity and usefulness of the product.

As a result, their work has shaped and is still impacting our environment.

Genre Documentary
Created byScott Dadich
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons2
No. of episodes14
Running time42–48 minutes
Original networkNetflix
Original releaseFebruary 10, 2017 – September 25, 2019

Review of Abstract: The Art of Design 2017 Documentary on the Web:

IMDbRotten TomatoesTop Documentary FilmsGoogle Users
8.3/10 (‎5,476 votes)100% (‎8 votes)8/10 ‎(19 votes)94% liked this film

5)  Formula 1: Drive to Survive (2019)

Netflix's "Formula 1: Drive to Survive" series has brought the world of F1 to the homes of a whole new audience, and viewers have found themselves gripped as the show's cameras traveled into the inner sanctums of the paddock's 10 teams.

Following the show's successful return in February, we spoke to one of Drive to Survive's Executive Producers, Paul Martin, to get a first-hand account of how the show came together.

Keep reading to find out what Lewis Hamilton was like to work with, the darkest moment of the program's production so far, and why meeting Guenther Steiner was crucial to making Formula 1: Drive to Survive a success.

Genre Docudrama
Created byFormula One Netflix
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons4
No. of episodes40
Running time27–51 minutes
Original networkNetflix
Original release8 March 2019 – present (September 2022)

Review of Formula 1: Drive to Survive 2019 Docudrama on the Web:

IMDbGoogle Users
8.6/10 (‎39,250 votes)94% liked this TV show

4)  13th (2016)

Ava DuVernay directed 13th, a documentary film. In the documentary, the goal was to bring attention to the issue of modern 'slavery' in the United States, the criminalization and incarceration of African-Americans, and politicians' response to these issues (Netflix, 2016).  Therefore, the documentary is interesting not only to African Americans who suffer from prejudice and discrimination but also to social activists. In this paper, we will examine DuVernay's position on incarceration in light of modern realities and reflect on the ideas presented in the film.

"13th" should concentrate on both my emotions toward the film as well as its explanation of the historical foundations of the contemporary practice of locking up a sizable number of black males in American prisons.

Additionally, the most striking thing is when the interviewees offer proof to support the claim that this issue is the product of the commercial and political game that is focused on maximizing profits and adapting the concept of slavery to contemporary realities. 

I now have a better understanding of the genesis of the situation, and I'm confident that anyone seeking to investigate the topic of prejudice towards African Americans and overcrowding in American jails from many angles would find this video to be informative.

Genre Documentary/History
Directed byAva DuVernay
Original languageEnglish
Country United States
Running time100 minutes
Original networkNetflix
Release dateOctober 7, 2016 (United States)

Review of 13th, 2016 Documentary/History on the Web:

IMDbRotten TomatoesMetacriticGoogle Users
8.2/10 (‎35,513 votes)97% (‎110 votes)83%89% liked this film

3) Kiss the Ground (2020)

The new documentary "Kiss the Ground" warns us that soil mismanagement is a kryptonite for our society and environment.  Fortunately, it's a flaw that can be fixed—as long as we find a way to overturn the conventional agricultural practices of the past. Although the obstacles seem imposing, many individuals are willing to kiss the ground and champion the natural beauty of our planet, one instance of which is the film Kiss the Ground, recently selected for the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival. 

The point is very clear: The presence of dirt is an indication of air pollution and we're getting lots of warning signs. Thanks to our ineptitude, it's like an interconnected node that's short-circuiting - and that's to blame for all of our ecological woes.  Not only are there global warming and desertification, but there are also various social problems to account for. 

For example, in the event of the failure of the food system, the need for sustenance, and the hunger and despair this creates, present a receptive audience - a fertile ground for radical groups spouting radical views.

The all-encompassing solution is offered as being deceivingly simple: As the dirt is converted to the soil through a regenerative ethic, so it is our salvation.  Soil-related issues come up because people underestimate how powerful and resistant to natural disasters it is.  To increase its worth, we need to make the soil more noticeable in the public and political spheres. Subterranean just needs some human affection.

Sadly, this documentary is just as questionable as many other docs out there. Using some bite-sized pieces of data designed to go viral and providing no analytical insights. Its style never veers totally outside the realms of sanity, like Food, Inc. or Secret Ingredients, etc. 

When it does depart from the verifiable fact it suffers predictable generalizations about chemical agriculture, GMOs, etc. ignoring the important contribution that whipping-boy technologies make to this cause!

Genre Documentary
Directed byJoshua Tickell, Rebecca Harrell Tickell
Original languageEnglish
Country United States
Running time1 hour 24 minutes
Original networkNetflix
Release dateApril 2020 (United States)

Review of Kiss the Ground, 2020 Documentary on the Web:

IMDbRotten TomatoesGoogle Users
8.2/10 (‎6,842 votes)88% (‎8 votes)87% liked this film

2) The Minimalists: Less is Now (2021)

Joshua and Ryan are called "The Minimalists". They currently live with as little as possible in their documentary called The Minimalists, shown on Netflix. In the fervor of a new year, a new me atmosphere, this new documentary does something unique and distinctive. 

Utilizing a fast-paced commercial culture, the jarring images and intimate depictions of materialism and wealth present a limited perspective on life in America, one that the audience finds refreshing.

Ultimately, the message is that less is more.  To achieve success, decide on a few crucial points that both partners agree on and leave the rest to the imagination. 

The Minimalists would like to test and disturb the audience that is rich with what they want to ask: Can one get away with not having?

Directed byMatt D'Avella
Original languageEnglish
Country United States
Running time53 minutes
Distributed byNetflix
Release dateJanuary 1, 2021

Review of The Minimalists: Less Is Now, 2021 film on the Web:

IMDbCommon Sense MediaGoogle Users
5.9/10 (‎4,188 votes)2/573% liked this film

1) Daughters of Destiny (2017)

Five daughters of Indian families live in one of the world’s poorest and most powerful caste groups: the Dalit. In the four-part documentary series daughters of Destiny on Netflix, the story is told from their perspectives. 

The four episodes explore the development of the girls at Shanti Bhavan, an unusual co-ed school in Tamil Nadu.  Throughout the four episodes, the girls range in age from 7 to 23. In the future, we expect these girls, as well as all the students at Shanti Bhavan, to be able to support them, help their families and communities escape poverty, and make a positive impact on the world.

The series Freehold won an Academy Award for Best Documentary Short, in 2007. Freehold follows kids as they work to redefine themselves, gender, and class and build a new future for the generations who will follow them. 

Composed with input from an Academy Award and Emmy Award-winning composer, the journey takes its listeners through various emotions, climaxing with an original song.

Genre Documentary
Created byVanessa Roth
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes4
Running time56-65 minutes
Original networkNetflix
Original releaseJuly 28, 2017

Review of Daughters of Destiny, 2017 Documentary on the Web:

IMDbFacebookGoogle Users
8.6/10 (‎931 votes)5/5 (277 votes)84% liked this film


Overall, these ten documentaries will have a lasting effect on how you view the world. Hopefully, this list helps you discover some great new shows to watch for yourself and learn about some of the most pressing issues in our society today! 

We hope that you enjoy all of these Incredible Netflix Documentaries. They cover a wide range of topics from historical events to current affairs, social justice, and life’s mysteries; but regardless of what they're about, they're must-watch material. We've personally seen all of them at least once or twice so if we recommend something it means it's a worthy investment in your time!

Lastly, if you enjoyed reading our suggestions please share them with your friends - we love recommending great films!

Here is the list of Netflix’s top 10 must-watch documentaries that will change the way you see the world!

  • Seaspiracy 
  • The Social Dilemma
  • The Mind, Explained
  • Downfall: The Case against Boeing
  • Abstract: The Art of Design
  • Formula 1: Drive to Survive
  • 13th
  • Kiss the Ground
  • The Minimalists: Less is Now 
  • Daughters of Destiny