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Ashley Madison, To Kill a Tiger, and More Must-See Netflix Documentaries

Best Netflix Documentaries: Ashley Madison: Sex, Lies and Scandal

Who doesn’t love a good Netflix documentary? They educate, inform, and entertain, and often, leave your jaw hanging in shock. This month, the streaming giant has dropped several new must-see documentaries, including the upcoming new release Ashley Madison: Sex, Lies and Scandal.

The new documentary chronicles the rise, fall, and rebirth of a website that has impacted countless couples and families. Interviews with former employees and clients work to present an unflinching look at what happens when millions of secrets are exposed at once, told through the eyes of a group of people who experienced it firsthand.

Watch the Trailer for Ashley Madison: Sex, Lies and Scandal:

Ashley Madison: Sex, Lies and Scandal will be released on May 15. Of course, this is just one of many documentaries the platform has to offer, so there’s plenty for you to watch right now.

Recently, Netflix added 2024 Academy Award nominee To Kill a Tiger to its library. Directed by Nisha Pahuja, To Kill a Tiger follows Ranjit, a farmer in India who takes on the fight of his life when he demands justice for his 13-year-old daughter, who has been sexually assaulted. Within his community, Ranjit’s decision to support his daughter is virtually unheard of, and his journey unprecedented.

It’s a difficult, often infuriating and harrowing watch, but ultimately, To Kill a Tiger is a powerful and important film.

Watch the trailer for To Kill a Tiger:

If To Kill a Tiger sounds too confronting or isn’t what you’re after, though, there are plenty of other options on the platform. To make your life easier, we’ve compiled a list of best documentaries on Netflix for you. Whether you’re after a true crime investigation that will send you down a Google rabbit hole, a behind-the-scenes look at one of the biggest names in Hollywood, an eye-opening documentary about nature and culture, or a look into a niche community you know nothing about, Netflix has something for you.

Without further ado, here are the best documentaries streaming on Netflix Australia right now.

The Best Documentaries Streaming on Netflix

Abducted in Plain Sight

Directed by: Skye Borgman
Synopsis: The twisting, turning, stranger-than-fiction true story of the Brobergs, a naive, church-going Idaho family that fell under the spell of a sociopathic neighbour with designs on their 12-year-old daughter.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

For those unfamiliar with Abducted in Plain Sight, there’s just truly nothing that can prepare you for the story to come. It has to be seen to be believed, and even then, it feels unbelievable. Once you’re done with Abducted in Plain Sight, you can also watch A Friend of the Family, the limited series based on the case, on 7 Plus.

Amanda Knox

Directed by: Brian McGinn and Rod Blackhurst
Synopsis: American exchange student Amanda Knox is convicted and eventually acquitted for the 2007 death of another student in Italy.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

A gripping look at the Amanda Knox case, sensationalist journalism and true crime culture, Amanda Knox is a fascinating and compelling watch.

The Antisocial Network: From Memes to Mayhem

Directed by: Giorgio Angelini and Arthur Jones
Synopsis: A group of lonely teenagers formed an online community and bonded over their isolation, but their collective beliefs warped reality.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

An intriguing and often concerning film, The Antisocial Network offers a candid look at the impressionable hive mind of 4chan. The documentary charts the site’s rise, and explores the impact that 4chan and other similar sites have had on today’s cultural climate and politics.

Athlete A

Directed by: Bonni Cohen and Jon Shenk
Synopsis: Follow the Indianapolis Star reporters that broke the story about USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar’s abuse and hear from gymnasts like Maggie Nichols.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

A thorough documentary that investigates how the toxic culture of the USA gymnastics team festered and evolved into the abusive environment it became. Athlete A is an important but gruelling watch that gives victims a voice and shows the importance of good journalism.

Camp Courage

Directed by: Max Lowe and Ryan Brophy
Synopsis: In this documentary, a girl displaced by the war in Ukraine heads to a summer camp in the Alps with her grandmother, testing the limits of her bravery.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

An inspiring short documentary, Camp Courage looks at both the trauma of war and the impact it has on children. It’s a film about the resilience of children as they work to overcome their challenges and move forward with their lives.

Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution

Directed by: James Lebrecht and Nicole Newnham
Synopsis: Down the road from Woodstock, a revolution blossomed at a ramshackle summer camp for teenagers with disabilities, transforming their lives and igniting a landmark movement.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Nominated for Best Documentary Feature at the 2021 Academy Awards, Crip Camp is an important, unmissable story about the fight for disability rights. More than just a history lesson, Crip Camp is also a warm, uplifting documentary that will keep you hooked from start to finish.

The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson

Directed by: David France and Mark Blane
Synopsis: Victoria Cruz investigates the mysterious 1992 death of Black gay rights activist and Stonewall veteran, Marsha P. Johnson. Using archival interviews with Johnson, and new interviews with Johnson’s family, friends and fellow activists.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

An emotional, heartfelt look at Marsha P. Johnson’s life and activism for the LGBTQ+ community. A timely reminder of how far we’ve come, and how far we have to go.

The Deepest Breath

Directed by: Laura McGann
Written by: Laura McGann
Synopsis: A champion and expert safety diver seemed destined for one another. Despite different paths taken, they meet at the pinnacle of the free-diving world, experiencing the thrilling rewards and inescapable risks of chasing dreams through the depths of the ocean.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

If Free Solo had you on the edge of your seat, The Deepest Breath is the documentary for you. With incredible underwater cinematography, and an emotionally compelling narrative, The Deepest Breath also plays like a thriller that will keep you hooked from start to finish.

Descendant

Directed by: Margaret Brown
Synopsis: Follows descendants of the survivors from the Clotilda, the last ship that carried enslaved Africans to the United States, as they reclaim their story.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

A powerful, necessary documentary that aims to draw the line from past to present. As the descendants tell the story of their ancestors, the film offers a dynamic picture of the long-reaching, ongoing impact of slavery.

The Elephant Whisperers

Directed by: Kartiki Gonsalves
Synopsis: Bomman and Bellie, a couple in South India, devote their lives to caring for an orphaned baby elephant named Raghu, forging a family like no other that tests the barrier between the human and the animal world.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Nominated for Best Documentary Short at the 2023 Academy Awards, The Elephant Whisperers packs a lot into its 41-minute runtime. A heartwarming, hopeful and compelling story.

Fantastic Fungi

Directed by: Louie Schwartzberg
Synopsis: Fantastic Fungi is a descriptive time-lapse journey about the magical, mysterious and medicinal world of fungi and their power to heal, sustain and contribute to the regeneration of life on Earth that began 3.5 billion years ago.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

An engaging and educational documentary that is, well… fantastic. With incredible time-lapse photography, this is a visually stunning work that’s sure to captivate and uplift.

Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened

Directed by: Chris Smith
Synopsis: An exclusive behind the scenes look at the infamous unraveling of the Fyre music festival.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Perhaps the most meme-d documentary on the list, the story behind the disastrous Fyre Festival is even more unbelievable than the events that unfolded.

The Greatest Night in Pop

Directed by: Bao Nguyen
Synopsis: On January 25th 1985, dozens of the era’s most popular musicians gathered in Los Angeles to record a charity single for African famine relief. Setting egos aside, they collaborated on a song that would make history.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Recorded on January 25, 1985, “We Are the World” was a benefit single released to raise money for famine relief in Africa, and brought many of the biggest names in music of the 1980s together on one song. It went on to become one of the best selling singles of all time, and won four Grammy Awards.

The Greatest Night in Pop is a must-see for music fans of all ages, as it takes the viewer on a journey through one of the industry’s biggest events in modern history.

Heroin(e)

Directed by: Elaine McMillion Sheldon
Synopsis: Three women fight to break the cycle one life at a time.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Released before DopesickPain Hustlers and All the Beauty and the Bloodshed brought widespread awareness to the opioid epidemic, Heroin(e) put the crisis in the spotlight. Nominated for Best Documentary Short at the Academy Awards, Heroin(e) is an intimate and unflinching look at the destruction the opioid epidemic has had on West Virginia.

Icarus

Directed by: Brian Fogel
Synopsis: When Bryan sets out to uncover the truth about doping in sports, a chance meeting with a Russian scientist transforms his story from a personal experiment into a geopolitical thriller.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Icarus is the kind of film that feels organic as it unfolds from one story into another, holding your attention throughout the journey. A must-see for sport and documentary fans alike, Icarus also won Best Documentary Feature at the 2018 Oscars.

King of Clones

Directed by: Aditya Thayi
Synopsis: From human cloning research to a scandalous downfall, follow the life and work of Korea’s most notorious scientist, Hwang Woo-suk.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Although the topic of human cloning is scientifically complex, King of Clones is engaging, informative and educational in a way that remains accessible to the viewer throughout.

Long Shot

Directed by: Jacob LaMendola
Synopsis: When Juan Catalan is arrested for a murder he didn’t commit, he builds his case around raw footage from the popular TV show, Curb Your Enthusiasm (2000).
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Long Shot is a short documentary of an almost unbelievable story that puts the flaws of the United States’ justice system in the spotlight. At 39 minutes, it’s a short watch that will hook you in quickly.

The Marsha Mitchell Effect

Directed by: Anne Alvergue and Debra McClutchy
Synopsis: The Cabinet wife who spoke out during Watergate and the Nixon administration’s campaign to gaslight her into silence.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

A 40-minute history lesson about Marsha Mitchell, the woman who spoke out during the Watergate scandal. It’s quick, it’s engaging, it’s informative. If this one piques your interest, we also recommend watching Gaslit on Stan, which is the limited series based on Marsha Mitchell, in which Julia Roberts stars as Mitchell.

Miss Americana: Taylor Swift

Directed by: Lana Wilson
Synopsis: A look at iconic pop artist Taylor Swift during a transformational time in her life as she embraces her role as a singer/songwriter and harnesses the full power of her voice.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

There are few people currently on this planet who are as famous as Taylor Swift is. Miss Americana takes us behind the headlines to give us an idea of who Swift is as a person — what her creative process looks like, what drives her, the pressures she feels, and more.

Moonage Daydream

Directed by: Brett Morgen
Synopsis: A cinematic odyssey exploring David Bowie’s creative and musical journey. From visionary filmmaker Brett Morgen, and sanctioned by the Bowie estate.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Spectacular doesn’t begin to cover it. Moonage Daydream is a fascinating, kaleidoscopic film that defies the traditions of rock documentaries to create a truly unique viewing experience.

My Octopus Teacher

Directed by: Pippa Erlich and James Reed
Synopsis: A filmmaker forges an unusual friendship with an octopus living in a South African kelp forest, learning as the animal shares the mysteries of her world.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Winner of Best Documentary Feature at the 2021 Academy Awards, My Octopus Teacher is a nature documentary that delivers on visuals and then some.

ONEFOUR: Against All Odds

Directed by: Gabriel Gasparinatos
Synopsis: This documentary traces the meteoric rise of Australia’s first drill rap stars, defiant in the face of police’s efforts to stop them from performing.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

An engaging, compelling, and deeply frustrating watch, ONEFOUR: Against All Odds depicts ONEFOUR’s defiant rise to fame in the face of a targeted effort from the New South Wales police to ban the group from performing live.

The on-camera police featured in the film defend their actions with a somewhat astonishing lack of remorse, in a story that’s bound to remind anyone familiar with NWA of the systemic racism that hip-hop artists from non-white backgrounds face daily.

Operation Varsity Blues: The College Admissions Scandal

Directed by: Chris Smith
Synopsis: Reenactments drive this documentary investigating the mastermind behind a scam to sneak the kids of rich and famous families into top US universities.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

We all love a good, old-fashioned Hollywood scandal, but thankfully, Operation Varsity Blues: The College Admissions Scandal takes us beyond the headlines to explain the environment that allows it to happen in the first place.

Pamela: A Love Story

Directed by: Ryan White
Synopsis: Follows the life of pop culture icon Pamela Anderson, including never-before-seen archival footage and personal journals.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

In the ’90s, Pamela Anderson was one of the most famous women in the world, which means she was one of the most scrutinised women in the world. Pamela: A Love Story is a sincere and thoughtful look at Anderson’s life beyond the headlines, and beyond her life as the blonde bombshell of Baywatch.

Period. End of Sentence.

Directed by: Rayka Zehtabchi
Synopsis: Indian women fight the stigma surrounding menstruation and begin manufacturing sanitary pads.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Winner of Best Documentary Short at the 2019 Academy Awards, Period. End of Sentence. is an important look at the fight to end period stigma that will educate and inspire.

The Saint of Second Chances

Directed by: Jeff Malmberg, Morgan Neville
Synopsis: Mike Veeck, son of legendary Major League Baseball owner Bill Veeck, blows up his father’s career and then spends the next few decades learning the value of a second chance.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

If you’re in the mood for an engaging documentary that will tug at your heartstrings, look no further than The Saint of Second Chances. It’s fun, it’s funny, and it has Charlie Day (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) playing Mike Veeck in re-enacted scenes. What more could you want, really?

Sly

Directed by: Thom Zimny
Synopsis: The nearly fifty year prolific career of Sylvester Stallone, who has entertained millions, is seen in retrospective in an intimate look of the actor, writer, director-producer, paralleling with his inspirational life story.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

For fans of Rocky, Rambo, or any of Sylvester Stallone’s work, Sly is a must-watch. Stallone tells the story of his life and career with honesty and insight, and taps into his rarely-seen vulnerable side, which may surprise the viewer.

The Speed Cubers

Directed by: Sue Kim
Synopsis: Discover the special bond — and uncommon competitive spirit — shared by the world’s Rubik’s Cube-solving record breakers in this documentary.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

If you’re in the mood to deep dive into a niche community you likely know nothing about, The Speed Cubers is a great way to spend 40 minutes. A heartwarming, earnest, and feel-good short documentary you won’t regret.

Stamped From the Beginning

Directed by: Roger Ross Williams
Synopsis: A hybrid documentary/scripted feature based on Dr. Kendi’s National Book Award-winning Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

A compelling, thought-provoking and passionate film, Stamped from the Beginning is a look at the myths, lies, and racist tropes that have permeated culture for centuries, tracing them back to their origins.

Take Care of Maya

Directed by: Henry Roosevelt
Synopsis: As a medical team tries to understand 10-year-old Maya Kowalski’s rare illness, they begin to question her parents. Suddenly, Maya is in state custody – despite a family desperate to bring their daughter home.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

A challenging, heartbreaking and often infuriating watch, Take Care of Maya is a compelling, well-told story that will stay with you long after the film’s end.

Tell Me Who I Am

Directed by: Ed Perkins
Synopsis: After losing his memory in an accident, Alex Lewis trusts his twin brother, Marcus, to tell him about his past only to discover that he’s hiding a dark secret about their childhood.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

As stylish as it is harrowing, Tell Me Who I Am is an undeniably gruelling watch that you won’t be able to tear your eyes away from. An unmissable, unbelievable, and unforgettable film.

Three Identical Strangers

Directed by: Tim Wardle
Synopsis: In 1980 New York, three young men who were all adopted meet each other and find out they’re triplets who were separated at birth. But their quest to find out why turns into a bizarre and sinister mystery.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Related: The Cruel True Story Behind Netflix’s Three Identical Strangers

What Jennifer Did

Directed by: Jenny Popplewell
Synopsis: When Jennifer Pan calls 911 to report that her parents have been shot, she becomes the primary focus of a captivating criminal case.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Despite the fact that the viewer either already knows what Jennifer did or can guess within the first few minutes of the runtime, What Jennifer Did is a gripping watch throughout.

Yellow Door: ’90s Lo-fi Film Club

Directed by: Lee Hyuk-rae
Synopsis: This intimate documentary explores a bygone era of cinematic passion and the emergence of young film enthusiasts in South Korea, including Bong Joon Ho.
Where to watch: Streaming on Netflix

Nostalgia enthusiasts and cinephiles, this one’s for you. Yellow Door is a sweet trip down memory lane that invites the viewer into their circle as the participants reconnect and reflect on a bygone era.

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