Cults The Best Documentaries About Cults  

Ranker Film
3.1k votes 1.6k voters 239.5k views 33 items

List Rules Documentary films about cults and religions.

This list of the best documentaries about cults has been voted on by movie lovers. This list includes popular and recognizable titles, along with a lot of independent films about cults, with videos. What is the best documentary about cults? This list will give you a good idea.

With every vote, the order of the list will be changed to see which documentary about cults comes out on top. If you don't see your favorite on the list, add it along with the titles below so that others may vote on it as well. The list currently includes titles such as The Endless Summer, Burden of Dreams and Mondo Cane.

Documentaries are nonfiction and made with the intention of displaying reality for historical purposes and to educate those watching the film. Most documentaries are driven by independent filmmakers and those passionate about the topics they are portraying. These documentaries about cults cover many different topics and types of cults.

Vote up your favorite cult documentaries below or add one that you found interesting that isn't already on the list.
list ordered by
1
400 50
Jonestown: The Life and Death ... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Rebecca Moore, Janet Shular, Tim Carter
Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple, is a 2006 documentary film made by Firelight Media, produced and directed by Stanley Nelson. The documentary reveals new footage of the incidents ...more
2
555 86
Holy Hell is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
carlybobarly added Will Allen, Dimitrius Pulido, Phillipe Coquet
Holy Hell is a 2016 American documentary film by Will Allen about his experiences as a member of the Buddhafield cult for twenty-two years. The cult's leader, who has several names but is ...more
3
214 52
The Source Family is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Ahom Aquarian, Isis Aquarian, Elena Michaels
The Source Family is a 2012 feature documentary film directed by Jodi Wille and Maria Demopoulos that recounts the story of Father Yod, Ya Ho Wa 13 and the Source Family. The Source Family was a ...more
4
237 67
Jesus Camp is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Mike Papantonio, Lou Engle, Becky Fischer
Jesus Camp is a 2006 American documentary film directed by Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing about a charismatic Christian summer camp, where children spend their summers being taught that they have ...more
5
86 11
Scientology and the Aftermath is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
AlyssaBartoshevich added Scientology and the Aftermath Leah Remini, Mike Rinder, Chantal Dodson

In this hourlong docuseries, actress Leah Remini turns investigative reporter, she says, to "share the shocking truth about Scientology," the secretive, controversial church that Remini herself was a member of for years.

6
135 35
Children of God is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Sylvia Padilla, Miriam Padilla, Helen Mirren
"Johnny, a white Bahamian artist from Nassau, is depressed and creatively uninspired. Under instructions from his teacher, he relocates to the rural island of Eleuthera, where he meets the ...more
7
83 13
Wild Wild Country is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Shabana Malone added
Wild Wild Country (Netflix, 2018) is a documentary series directed by Maclain and Chapman Way. When Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh AKA Osho, the world's most controversial guru, builds a utopian city ...more
8
31 2
Going Clear: Scientology and t... is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Sue Freer Kameka added Lawrence Wright, Mark Rathbun, Monique Rathbun
Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief is a 2015 documentary film directed by Alex Gibney. Deconstructing the church's claims by presenting a condensed history of Scientology and its ...more
9
123 36
I Escaped a Cult is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
I Escaped a Cult Brent Jeffs, Warren Jeffs, Rebekah Schmierer
10
70 30
The Manson Family is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Sage Stallone, Jim Van Bebber, Marc Pitman
The Manson Family is a 2003 American crime drama film. The film covers the lives of Charles Manson and his "family" of followers.
11
64 30
Sons of Perdition is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Bruce Barlow, Deloy Bateman, Michelle Benward
"In the polygamist community cultivated by the notorious (and now incarcerated) "prophet" Warren Jeffs, women are a commodity, children are reared to be ignorant, and free thought ...more
12
51 26
The End of the World Cult is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
The End of the World Cult Michael Travesser
13
46 30
Gates of Heaven is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Lucille Billingsley, Zella Graham, Cal Harberts
Gates of Heaven is a 1978 documentary film by Errol Morris about the pet cemetery business. It was made when Morris was unknown and did much to launch his career.
14
21 9
deprogrammed is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
blackdecaf added deprogrammed Balavanta Das, Hridayananda Das Goswami, Ted Patrick
15
32 21
Triumph of the Will is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Triumph of the Will is a 1935 propaganda film directed, produced, edited and co-written by Leni Riefenstahl. It chronicles the 1934 Nazi Party Congress in Nuremberg, which was attended by more ...more
16
29 24
Crumb is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Robert Crumb
Crumb is a 1994 documentary film about the noted underground cartoonist Robert Crumb and his family. Directed by Terry Zwigoff and produced by Lynn O'Donnell, it won widespread acclaim. It was ...more
17
20 15
American Commune is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
American Commune is 2013 documentary film written by Rena Mundo Croshere, and directed by Rena Mundo Croshere and Nadine Mundo.
18
21 18
Marjoe is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Marjoe Gortner, Sarah Kernochan
Marjoe is a 1972 American documentary film produced and directed by Howard Smith and Sarah Kernochan about the life of evangelist Marjoe Gortner. It won the 1972 Academy Award for Best ...more
19
13 10
Burden of Dreams is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
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
20
16 14
Haxan: Witchcraft Through the ... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
William S. Burroughs, Benjamin Christensen, Elith Pio
This silent docu-horror masterpiece is a study of how superstition and the misunderstanding of diseases and mental illness led to the hysteria of witch-hunts.
21
14 12
Fall From Grace is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
22
10 9
Join Us is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Deborah Melz, Joaquin Sullivan, Raymund Melz
23
10 11
A Dog's Life is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Mondo cane is a documentary written and directed by Italian filmmakers Paolo Cavara, Franco Prosperi and Gualtiero Jacopetti. The film consists of a series of travelogue vignettes that provide ...more
24
0 0
Ranker Video
Hail Satan?
Hail Satan? is a 2019 American documentary directed by Penny Lane. An examination of The Satanic Temple, including its origins and grassroots political activism.
25
4 5
God Willing is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Documentaries About Cults
Carrie Kargel added Nina Persson, Janne Carlsson, Georgi Staykov
God Willing is a 2006 romantic drama film directed by Amir Chamdin and co-written with Martina Stöhr and Erik Egler.