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Documentaries Essay Examples and Topics

When writing essays on Documentaries, you may be struggling with topics, structure, and content. Don’t worry; we have collected some tips that will help you write the best Documentaries essay.

  • If you don’t have a topic yet, focus on a subject that you are passionate about. Do you care about climate change? Choose a documentary that examines environmental issues. Do you follow a healthy lifestyle? There are plenty of films about nutrition available. You can also search for a Documentaries essay topic online – this will surely give you some great ideas!
  • To ensure that your essay is structured well, create an outline before you begin writing. Start with a simple structure (introduction, main body, and conclusion) and add more sub-topics as you progress.
  • To make your essay stand out, pay a lot of attention to the analysis. You can find a film analysis worksheet online to help you structure this part of the paper. Using resources from the internet, you can also document analysis examples from other essays on the topic.
  • Finally, relate the content of your chosen film to current events to produce the best essay. Documentaries often focus on the topics that are pertaining to modern society, so this part should be easy. You can watch some television or check social media to see if you can find any news related to the chosen topic. Examining how the content of the documentary is relevant and applicable today will definitely earn you extra marks.

We hope that these tips will make writing your Documentaries essay much easier. To explore recent documentary films and watch them online, be sure to check out this website.

Great Big Story: Interview with Landon Meier

It is a part of the Human Condition series that make the representatives of the general public acknowledge the most extraordinary and distinctive individuals.

The Documentary “The Murder of Emmett Till”

The current paper discusses a documentary, "The Murder of Emmett Till," which presents the story of the death of Emmet Till, one of the most known victims of racial violence in the USA, and briefly [...]

“Too Big to Fail” by Curtis Hanson

If people take all their money out of the banks, what is that called? Explain why people would want to take their money out of the banks?

“Super Size Me” Documentary by Morgan Spurlock

The movie is a documentary on an experiment conducted on filmmaker Spurlock by himself so as to reveal the effects of eating fast foods. The movie concludes by authoritatively stating that fast foods are hazardous [...]

“Born into Brothels” Documentary Analysis

Title of the film: Born into Brothels: Calcutta Red Light Kids Date released: January 17, 2004 Producers: Zana Briski and Ross Kauffman I selected this movie due to the controversies that surround it.

Default: The Student Loan Documentary Critique

The documentary features personal student stories, as well as professional comments from the Student Loan Justice official, emphasizing that it is rather corporate than personal irresponsibility to blame for the existing situation.

“Consuming Kids” by Adriana Barbaro and Jeremy Earp

This made me think about two things: the professional work of the creators who managed to persuade me of the urgency of the problem and how, in essence, the same way of media influence is [...]

“Super Size Me” Documentary by Morgan Spurlock

Talking about the ethical side of the movie Super Size Me and its hard critics of McDonald's and the style of life offered by this company, it is necessary to admit that its author, Morgan [...]

The 2008 Banking Crisis in the Documentary “Inside Job”

Using the documentary "Inside Job", the paper presented below asserts that the malpractices of different banking experts, the ethical dilemma revolving around ratings agencies' actions, and the Gramm-Leach-Bliley and the Glass-Steagall Acts influenced the nature [...]

“Sun Ra: A Joyful Noise” Documentary Analysis

The overall essence of the film can be characterized as musically and visually complex due to the combination of seemingly separate worlds: Ra's deep philosophical monologues and the Arkestra's banter about Ra and his contribution [...]

The Documentary “Supplements and Safety”

The Frontline documentary, "Supplements and Safety," provides a thorough and insightful description of the main problems existing in the supplement industry: safety, regulation, and efficacy.

The Documentary “The Lost Libraries of Timbuktu”

The historic and exotic city is positioned strategically north of the large Niger River on the southern edge of the Sahara Desert. The text written in the margins was added after the original text of [...]

“The Great Depression: 1929-1939” Documentary

Despite the promises given by the President and the leaders of finance, the situation did not improve. The narrator remarks that people were losing hope, and no one knew how to improve the situation.

“Unacceptable Levels”: Film Analysis

The film describes the development of the chemical industry that began in the middle of the 20th century. This issue occurred for the first time in the history of the United States.

Film Analysis: “A Girl in the River”

The problem is aggravated by the fact that the majority of the population believes that honor killings are justified by the intention of the act.

The Film “Immigration Battle”: the DREAM Act

In conclusion, it is necessary to note that the film Immigration Battle shows the struggle of some people to make American society truly Democratic and just.

Civil Rights Movement in “Freedom Riders” Documentary

As a commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of freedom movements, Nelson's movie is a story of segregation and racism, abhorrence, courage, and the general brutality of the depicted events.

Texas in 70s: “La Raza Unida Chapter” Documentary

The speaker talks about the events that happened in the 1970s in the state of Texas. This interview is a part of the CRBB collection of videos about the history of the La Raza Unida [...]

Barrios and Barriers: The Tucson Civil Rights Era

Although the second decade of the 21st century seems to be far away from the events described in the film racial issues continue to be one of the most heated topics not only in Arizona [...]

“Freedom Riders” a Documentary Movie by Firelight Media

The main goal of this paper is to discuss the impact that the media had on the progress of the civil rights movement and highlight strategies implemented by civil rights organizations.

The Documentary “Berkeley in the Sixties” by Mark Kitchell

The film begins with the off-screen narrator telling the audience that throughout the sixties, the University of California remained at the forefront of people's struggle to be in the position to take full advantage of [...]

The Documentary “Last Train Home”

The social issues that have been shown in the documentary are living condition of migrant workers in cities, the growing gap between the children and their absentee parents, and the change in the position of [...]

“Nostalgia for the Light” by Patricio Guzman

The reason for this is apparent the deployment of such an approach will naturally prompt the audience to think of what is being discussed as such that directly relates to what happened to be their [...]

The Documentary “Genocide”

According to the documentary, genocide is the outcome of mass hysteria. After that, the international community will be able to have an impact on the decisions of political leaders.

Documentary Film “The Immigration Battle”

In recent years, the issue of deportation separating families has come to the forefront of the movement, which can be seen in the movie.

“Return of the River” by John Gussman and Jessica Plumb

The livelihoods of the members of Elwha Klallam tribe, who were not officially considered the US citizens until the late 1920s, were destroyed by a flood that followed the construction of the dam.

The Documentary “Origins of Yoga: Quest for the Spiritual”

In the film, it is noted that people who decided to devote their lives to the practice of yoga would leave their homes, "abandon the conventional life" and the "householder stage" to "wander around in [...]

The Documentary “Freedom Riders”

The movie reveals that the activists of the 1960s capitalized on the changing media landscape in an attempt to pursue their aims.

“Freedom Riders” by Stanley Nelson

Having invited many participants and witnesses to star in the movie and having included numerous original recordings of the events that happened in 1961, Nelson became able to create a profoundly impressive account of one [...]

The Documentary “Immigration Battle”

In their documentary Immigration Battle film, Shari Robertson and Michael Camerini show the human factor and the guilt of both the Democrats and the Republicans regarding this failure to end the deportations.

The Documentary “Triumph of the Nerds”

The introduction of personal computers to the market revolutionized almost every aspect of human life today."Triumph of the Nerds" is a 1996 documentary about the history of personal computing since the creation of the first [...]

“Street Fight” a Film by Cory Booker

The main goal of this paper is to discuss the concepts of leadership and power, using examples that are presented in a film Street Fight. His slogans emphasized the importance of changes in the leadership [...]

Oman in “Routes of Incense to Those of Black Gold”

However, these symbols are also used in the documentary in order to accentuate the direction in the author's story from discussing different ways followed by the country during its development to accentuating the core of [...]

“The Retirement Gamble”: Privatizing Social Security

This paper uses "The Retirement Gamble" film and other scholarly articles to not only discuss the pros and cons of privatizing social security, but also to reflect on some of the pertinent issues raised in [...]

The Documentary “Inequality for All?”

As competition continues to become fierce in the global market, more companies will be expected to engage in different malpractices thus threatening the lives of more people. Experts also believe that this problem will continue [...]

Hip Hop Culture in “The Otherside” Documentary

Regardless numerous discussions about Hip Hop, this culture remains to be a considerable part of human life that helps to understand that such issue as racial profiling is not only something that is required by [...]

“Race – The Power of an Illusion” Documentary

One of the most amazing facts uncovered in the process of viewing the first episode of the "Race The Power of an Illusion" documentary is that people of different races have significant genetic coincidences.

The Status of Jamaica in the “Life and Debt”

Jamaica was one of the countries that benefitted from the IMF and the World Bank funds. The money from the financiers required a structured payment that the country could not live up to immediately.

The Documentary “Life and Debt”

The film aims to analyze the relation of the IMF to the process of globalization. The process of globalization and the cooperation of the countries with the IMF are affecting the countries of the third [...]

The Documentary “Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes”

Hip-Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes is a documentary movie that helps not only to understand the nature of hip hop but to connect a single style of music with the necessity of such crucial issues [...]

The Documentary “How Hackers Changed the World?”

The documentary provides detailed information, as to what were the process's sub-sequential phases, while presenting the audience with the excerpts from the interviews with the most prominent members of Anonymous and promoting the idea that [...]

Documentary Films Concept and Definition

The definition of documentary films addresses such features as the level of control, the institutional base, the structure of texts, and the attitude towards viewers.

The Movie “The Central Park Five”

The movie "The Central Park Five" is a vivid example of the way mass media have distorted the truth and led to the imprisonment of five innocent men.

“The Gate of Heavenly Peace” Movie by Spence

The political environment portrayed in the movie features a turbulent situation in the country and the efforts to preserve the history of China.

The Documentary “Nas: Time Is Illmatic”

In the documentary film entitled Nas: Time is Illmatic dedicated to the twentieth anniversary of the Nas' debut album, the history of the musician's life and the album is revealed to the viewer.

The Documentary “Muscle Shoals”

The challenge of the musicians described in the movie was that they struggled to find their own styles and sound to compete with the mainstream music of the time.

“Slavery by Another Name” Documentary

To assure the existence of the social and historical support, the movie is presented in the form of the documentary and can be viewed by an extended audience to spread awareness about the drawbacks of [...]

The Documentary “The Lost World of Communism”

Romania was no exception, and the period from the 1960s to the 1980s is known as an epoch of the Ceausescu dictatorship. It reveals the dreadful truth about the power of the Ceausescu family and [...]

“Wild Carpathia III” by Charlie Ottley

This area can be named the heart and soul of rural Romania because ancient traditions and customs are carefully kept there despite the globalization and modernization of the world. There is no spirit of death; [...]

The Documentary: “Wild Carpathia in Romania”

What was particularly interesting is that the area is a rare example of almost pristine nature and forest life in the entire Europe, which means that Wild Carpathia has a great potential in being an [...]

“The Cove” a Documentary by Rick O’Barry

In a bombshell revelation, the documentary purports that the Japanese populous is mostly unaware of the activities that go on in the cove. In the end, O'Barry has to be escorted out of the meeting [...]

American Food Industry in “Food, Inc.” Documentary

The film was developed between 2007 and 2009 with the aim of exposing the negative aspects of commercialization and mechanization of the American food production industry.

“The World According to Monsanto” Documentary

The company has been criticized for a long time by the ecological organizations and opponents of GMOs; in 2013, 2014 and 2015 the waves of protest against the company spread across the world.

“NOVA: Battle of the X-Planes” Documentary

The documentary film NOVA: Battle of the X-Planes throws light on the functioning of the aircraft industry. In particular, much attention is paid to the cooperation of companies representing this industry with military agencies, especially [...]

Park Avenue: Money, Power and the American Dream

This is one of the drawbacks that should be taken into account by the viewers who want to get a better idea about the causes of the problems described in the movie.

Drug War in “Baltimore: Anatomy of an American City”

The "strengths of this theory make it effective towards describing the behaviors of many individuals in the society". Many individuals engage in criminal activities due to lack of the required resources.

Pop Culture in “Young and Restless in China” Film

The film Young and Restless in China is a documentary highlighting the struggle of nine Chinese youths who face different challenges and opportunities in the new China society.

Children and Poverty in “Born into Brothels” Documentary

The desire to cognize the meaning of life involves the quest for the internal integrity and constancy of the personality. The fact of belonging to a particular cultural group, in which there are standards and [...]

Social Issues in “Born into Brothels” Film

It is possible to apply the feminist theory to consider a family featured in the film. In Shanti's family, this is also the case, and her mother is afraid of her daughter's future as the [...]

“The 11th Hour” Environmental Documentary

Thus, to overcome the catastrophic events and to predict the worsening of the situation, it is important to answer questions about the causes of the processes and the ways to cope with the ecological crisis.

“Expo: The Magic of the White City”

One of the details that can attract attention of the viewers is that the film-makers include many vivid photographs which highlight the magnificence of this exposition.

“Her Brilliant Career” a Documentary by Jean Holland

The documentary supports the writings about the gender discrimination by illustrating how the vice is perpetuated in the workplace. There are a number of solutions that can be implemented to end gender discrimination in the [...]

“Berlin Airlift” – Cold War History

The pathetic living conditions of the people provoked feelings of hatred towards the four forces that were contesting for the ownership of the city.

“The Berlin Airlift” – Lessons and Emotions

After the blockade of the major infrastructure that linked Berlin to the rest of the world, the Soviet forces piled pressure on their competitors to quit Berlin.

Documentary Movie Analysis: “Jesus Camp”

Through the roles played by Tory, Rachael and Levi, the audience is in a position to understand events in the camp, the learning process and purported gifts that children can use to draw America back [...]

The Documentary “The Invisible War”

The systematic cover-ups of assault cases illuminate how patriarchy and the lack of accountability have made sexual violence against servicewomen to persist in the military.

Documentary Film “Young and Restless in China”

One by one, they appear during the film, first to be introduced and then for the revisit so that the viewers know the beginning and the development of their stories.

“Babel” and “Super Size Me”: Documentaries Analysis

It becomes evident that Susan has to be taken to a hospital, but chaos is created due to the miscommunications between the different parties such as the fellow passengers, the villagers, the local authorities, and [...]

“The Massacre” Episode of “The War of Lebanon”

The movies include interviews with key figures that took place in the events, as well as with eyewitnesses, and contain vast visual evidence filmed during the time of war."The Massacre" is the tenth episode of [...]

“Fat and Proud” vs “I Used to Be Fat” Documentaries

The fact that they are comfortable and proud of their big size is amazing and leaves a considerable number of people to wonder what is there in fatness that the women should be proud of.

‘Obama’s Deal’ Documentary Analysis

After the struggle which was won by the president following the singing of the health reform, a surprise in the support that the president and his party had enjoyed was realized to have faded from [...]

US Soldiers in Restrepo Documentary

The film is remarkable and deserves credit as it enables the civilians to understand the experiences of the soldiers in a war zone.

Disease Topic in the Docudrama “And the Band Played On”

This docudrama describes the outbreak of AIDS epidemics in the United States in the eighties. Furthermore, this film depicts the efforts of medical workers and researchers to limit the spread of this disease.

African-Americans in the Documentary “Pride”

The film is commendable due to its appeal in overcoming racial barriers of prejudice, racism, and stereotype projected against African-American by proving that blacks are equally capable to the whites. The cultural differences and ways [...]

Documentary Analysis “America’s Safest Tires”

The main objective of the film was to demonstrate that the new tire made by the Fich Tire Company was superior to other tires in the market. The woman in the film is the secretary [...]

“Daughter from Danang” a Film by Gail Dolgin

For instance, in the movie, 'Daughter from Danang', Heidi's adoptive mother plays a major role in terms of showing her the need to forego her Vietnamese culture in order to fit into the American way [...]

The Documentary “Taboo: Blood Bonds”

One of the things that attracted my attention is that women have to ensure the wellbeing of children almost independently, while their spouses do not have to take many responsibilities. This is one of the [...]

“The Other F-Word”: Documentary Film

The analysis attempts to develop a comprehensive understanding of the identities and identity formation through music and the consequences of these identities to the individuals involved.

Social Determinants of Health: Documentary “Unnatural Causes”

According to the outcomes of the complex analysis that targeted four Louisville districts, the citizens demonstrate contrastive rates of health prevention performance, which is highly dependent on the factor of financial income.

“The American Southwest: Are We Running Dry?” Documentary

The documentary highlights that despite the harsh climate in the Southwest, there is the hope of addressing the water demands of the expanding population with the adoption of appropriate policies.

“The Guide: A Biologist in Gorongosa”

Since the movie titled The Guide: A Biologist in Gorongosa sheds some light on the specifics of the Gorongosa nature and helps understand the connection between its key elements, it can be considered a rather [...]

Cuban Missile Crisis Documentary

During a long period of time, the government of the Soviet Union denied the fact of the presence of their missiles in Cuba.

“Please Vote for Me”

There is no use denying the fact that it is one of the most fast-growing economies in the world and, that is why it is rather efficient and, moreover, it is possible to predict the [...]

“Cuban Missile Crisis: Three Men Go To War”

The film Cuban Missile Crisis: Three Men Go To War produced by the Public Broadcasting Service throws light on the actions of the political leaders who were involved in the confrontation that could result in [...]

Documentaries – Capitalism: A Love Story by Michael Moore

Moore's "Capitalism: A Love Story" examines the effects of capitalism on the American society. The film struggles to maintain a balance between the positives of capitalism and its negatives.