Netflix has brought some of the world’s best documentaries into our homes… But which ones should you be watching?
When Netflix launched last year in the UAE, it gave us instant access to some of the best film and television programmes available.
With scores of powerful documentaries exploring a wide variety of topics and human stories, it’s not just about binge-watching the latest courtroom drama or Marvel spinoff.
Here are our pick of the best documentaries on the service today.
Abstract: The Art of Design
Design shapes the world: it’s all around us, from the shoes on our feet and the phone we possess to the home where we lay our head at night. Shining the spotlight on some of the most influential illustrators, architects, photographers and even typographers of our time, Abstract is an eight-part series by Netflix that explores the influence of creativity and design. Learn the processes behind iconic patterns, the people who create works of art and what influences these people to innovate and push the boundaries.
The world is at a crossroads as conservation efforts to halt climate change and save species from extinction meet unprecedented challenges from powerful interest groups and the damaging effect of ignorance. Virunga tells the story of four people fighting to protect the last remaining mountain gorillas from war, poaching and other dangers in Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo. This inspiring film demonstrates the power of the human spirit and the conflict of interest that blights efforts to save some incredible animals from harm.
We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists
Criminals? Freedom fighters? Trolls? The hacking collective known as Anonymous has been called many things but the influence the group has had in the past few years has been significant. Exploring the rise of ‘hacktivism’, We Are Legion follows the evolution of underground hacking networks from their humble beginnings goofing around on websites to becoming perpetrators of widespread civil disobedience. Pests? Heroes? It all depends on your perspective.
Tales by Light
They say a picture is worth a thousand words and it’s true. Sometimes a single image can be more poignant, immersive and insightful than words could ever convey. Following professional photographers around the world as they seek the perfect pictures, Tales By Light shows the thought process behind the lens and the lengths some snappers will go to in order to get the ideal shot. Putting you firmly in the frame of a globetrotting shutterbug, you’ll be amazed at the reality behind the images and the human stories they capture.
You might not know the name Dean Kamen but you’ll definitely know his greatest invention, the Segway. In SlingShot, the eccentric inventor turns his hand to creating a water purification device of the same name with the aim of solving the world’s water crisis and saving thousands of lives. You can follow the journey from early development stages to deployment, find out what makes this scientist tick, and in particular, learn what drives him to help ease the suffering of millions across the world.
Coming soon and new to Netflix
Making a Murderer
The documentary series following the murder cases filed against Steven Avery caused a storm when it hit our screens in December 2015. Back to tell the rest of the story and delve further into the details, the second series is predicted to be a huge hit when it comes to Netflix this year.
This Netflix original film tells the story of a scientist who proves the existence of the afterlife leading to a global existential crisis. Starring Jason Segel, Rooney Mara and Robert Redford, this dark feature film, which was released on 31st March, echoes the plot of a Black Mirror episode – a drama that’s also available on the streaming service.
With its 80s vibe, excellent casting and winning combination of sci-fi and fantasy, Stranger Things was the surprise hit of 2016. With a highly-anticipated second season due to drop later this year, there’s still time to binge-watch the first season before we head back to Hawkins, Indiana once more.