Looking for something to watch on Netflix. Whether you’ve found yourself in a show hole or just hate wasting time scrolling titles ad nauseam, we’ve handpicked five of the best documentaries on Netflix released over the last five years.
1. The Bleeding Edge (2018)
A $400 billion industry. The potential to innovate healthcare to futuristic levels. A deadly cost to patients in need. The Bleeding Edge explores the truth behind the medical device side of the healthcare industry, specifically in highlighting the possibility that the relaxed regulations can produce dire consequences for patients. Although it must be noted that the facts presented came under scrutiny, the documentary is worth a view for those curious about how, where, and why certain devices make it into our healthcare systems.
2. Don’t F**K with Cats: Hunting an Internet Killer (2019)
A man anonymously killed two cats on camera then released it onto the internet, sending amateur sleuths into a frenzy. The manhunt is on to find and identify one of Canada’s most disturbing citizens. His abuse continues as viewers search for clues through screen grabs. What they find is far more than an animal abuser — a murderer.
3. My Octopus Teacher (2020)
At first pass, one would be forgiven for skipping My Octopus Teacher. Part nature documentary, part surprisingly heart-warming tale of an unlikely friendship, wading into the waters of South Africa where an octopus grows increasingly comfortable with a local filmmaker. Follow their friendship as it progresses over a year’s time, as this stunning creature shares her world with the curious filmmaker. The documentary opens our eyes to the mysteries of the deep, the intelligence of its lifeforms, and the potential for co-species friendships in the most unlikely of places.
4. Worn Stories (2021)
If you weren’t given peace from Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, Worn Stories might be a better fit for your viewing pleasure. This documentary miniseries is a comfortable eight half-hour episodes, a.k.a. something you can binge on a Saturday afternoon. Real people pull the most meaningful pieces of clothing from their closets and share the stories within the stitching. It’s a shallow premise that’s universally relatable: who among us doesn’t have a hat, t-shirt, or a pair of shoes that we can’t part with because it’s been laundered with our personal history and embroidered with an experience that we never want to part with.
5. The Pez Outlaw (2022)
Even the most nostalgic and obsessive collectors might think twice about popping the head on The Pez Outlaw, but with a 100 percent critic and 82 percent audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, this fish-out-of-water story is worth the watch. Meet Steve Glew, your average joe from Michigan who began smuggling Pez dispensers from Europe into the United States in the 1900s. The pacing and storytelling of the documentary are as intriguing and exciting as the film itself. This operation was far from child’s play. As Glew started to rake in millions, he drew the ire of “The Pezident” himself.
Nick Dauk | Contributing Writer