Documentary The Best Documentaries About Filmmaking  

Ranker Film
156 votes 32 voters 4k views 36 items

List Rules Documentaries about filmmaking, filmmakers, and the film industry.

This list of the best documentaries about filmmaking has been ranked by the community and includes popular and recognizable titles, along with some independent films. What is the best documentary about filmmaking? Vote up your favorite documentaries below, that look at the art of making movies.

As you vote, the order of the list will change to see which documentary about filmmaking is the best. This list currently includes titles such as Hearts of Darkness, Overnight, and Dangerous Days.

 Documentaries are nonfiction and made with the intention of displaying reality for historical purposes or to educate those watching the film. Most documentaries are driven by independent filmmakers and those passionate about the topics they are portraying.
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Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse is a 1991 documentary film about the production of the 1979 feature film Apocalypse Now.

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Vanessa Paradis Lost in La Mancha is a 2002 documentary film about Terry Gilliam's unfinished film The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, a film adaptation of the novel Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes. It was shot ...more

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Mick Jagger, Claudia Cardinale, Werner Herzog Burden of Dreams is a feature-length documentary and making-of directed by Les Blank, shot during and about the chaotic production of Werner Herzog's 1982 film Fitzcarraldo, filmed in the ...more

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Dangerous Days

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American Movie is a 1999 documentary directed by Chris Smith. The film chronicles the real 1996-1997 making of Coven, an independent horror film directed by an independent filmmaker named Mark ...more

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Alexander Beyer, Rüdiger Vogler, Alex Sendrowitz This haunting film about a film examines a classic Nazi propaganda movie used by historians for decades to provide insight into the realities of life in the Warsaw Ghetto in 1942. The recent ...more

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Darren Aronofsky, Matt Stone, Atom Egoyan This Film is Not Yet Rated is a 2006 American documentary film about the Motion Picture Association of America's rating system and its effect on American culture, directed by Kirby Dick and ...more

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The portrayal of Native Americans in cinema. / Cree filmmaker Neil Diamond takes an entertaining, insightful, and often humorous look at the Hollywood Indian, exploring the portrayal of North ...more

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Audience of One is an award-winning 2007 documentary directed by Michael Jacobs that was premiered on 9 March 2007 at the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Texas.

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Christian Sellers Most people don't set out to produce a horrible film, so how exactly does it happen? This documentary about 1989's Troll 2 - often referred to as the "worst movie in history" - ...more

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Peter Bogdanovich, Paul Winfield, Robert Wise Orson Welles' movie stirs the ire of publisher William Randolph Hearst, the man who the film was patterned after.

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Imaginary Witness: Hollywood and the Holocaust is a 2004 documentary history film directed by Daniel Anker.

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Iran: A Cinematographic Revolution Iran: A Cinematographic Revolution is a 2006 documentary film written by Nicolas Bertrand and Nader T. Homayoun and directed by Nader T. Homayoun.

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Phillip Adams, Steve Bisley, Briony Behets Not Quite Hollywood: The Wild, Untold Story of Ozploitation! is a 2008 Australian documentary film about the Australian New Wave of 1970s and '80s low-budget cinema. The film was written and ...more

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Buster Keaton Buster Keaton Rides Again is a 1965 documentary film about the filming of Buster Keaton's film The Railrodder, which was also released in 1965. Although it is a production documentary, this film ...more

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Salma Hayek, George Clooney, Juliette Lewis Full Tilt Boogie is a 1997 documentary directed by Sarah Kelly. It chronicles the production of the 1996 film From Dusk Till Dawn. It features extensive interviews with the cast and crew ...more

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Document of the Dead is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Documentaries About Filmmaking
George A. Romero, Tom Savini, Ken Foree Document of the Dead is a 1979 documentary film by American filmmaker Roy Frumkes that was largely shot during the production of the 1978 film Dawn of the Dead. Originally a 66 minute feature, ...more

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Sylvester Stallone, Audrey Hepburn, Ava Gardner Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff is a 2010 documentary film that explores the work of the cinematographer Jack Cardiff. It reviews his work and with the input of many of his ...more

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Gerard Damiano Inside Deep Throat is a 2005 American documentary film about the 1972 pornographic film Deep Throat and its effects on American society.

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Copyright Criminals "Computers, software, and even mobile phones have radically altered our relationship to mass culture and technology—providing consumers with the tools to become producers (or “remixers”) of ...more

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Bérénice Bejo, Romy Schneider, Jacques Gamblin "The French director Henri-Georges Clouzot is renowned for suspenseful classics such as Le Salaire de la peur (in English, The Wages of Fear) and Diabolique. Now this incredible documentary ...more

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Lars von Trier, Patrick Bauchau, Alexandra Vandernoot The Five Obstructions is a Danish film of 2003 by Lars von Trier and Jørgen Leth. The film is a documentary, but incorporates lengthy sections of experimental films produced by the ...more

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Overnight is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Documentaries About Filmmaking
Rachel Blanchard, Anthony LaPaglia, James D'Arcy Overnight is a 2010 comedy romance film directed and written by Valerie Breiman.

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Side By Side is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Documentaries About Filmmaking
Stephan Metzbauer added Side by Side is a 2012 American documentary film directed by Christopher Kenneally. It was produced by Justin Szlasa and Keanu Reeves. It premiered at the 62nd Berlin International Film Festival ...more

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Killing Priscilla

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Light Keeps Me Company is a 1999 documentary film directed by Carl-Gustaf Nykvist.

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Unknown Chaplin is an acclaimed three-part 1983 British documentary series about the career and methods of the silent film luminary Charles Chaplin, using previously unseen film for ...more

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The Wild Bunch: An Album in Montage The Wild Bunch: An Album in Montage is a 1996 American short documentary film directed and edited by Paul Seydor. The occasion for the creation of this documentary was the discovery of 72 ...more

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Official Rejection Kevin Smith, Traci Lords, Bryan Singer

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It's All True is an unfinished Orson Welles feature film comprising three stories about Latin America. "My Friend Bonito" was supervised by Welles and directed by Norman Foster in ...more

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A documentary of Arnold Schwarzenegger's gubernatorial campaign in California.

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AMERICAN SCARY is a look at the nation's tradition of horror hosting, from Zacherley to A. Ghastlee Ghoul. With interviews and footage from major hosts from the 1950s to the present day, such as ...more

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William Shatner, Henry Rollins, Ben Folds William Shatner's Gonzo Ballet is a feature-length documentary film about a ballet by Margo Sappington called "Common People", which was set to the music of William Shatner and Ben ...more

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The Last Mogul: The Life and T... is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Documentaries About Filmmaking
The Last Mogul: The Life and Times of Lew Wasserman Jimmy Carter, Larry King, Suzanne Pleshette The Last Mogul: The Life and Times of Lew Wasserman is a biographical documentary directed by Barry Avrich.

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Strictly Background Geoffrey Gould, Terry Bolo, Cecilia Hartfeld For decades, film and TV audiences have watched their favorite stars with little thought for the people standing behind them. "Strictly Background" explores the charm and determination ...more

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Prisoner of Paradise is a 2002 documentary film directed by Malcolm Clarke and Stuart Sender, and produced as a British-Canadian-American collaboration. The film tells the true story of Kurt ...more