Documentaries

by bellamerchant | created - 09 Jul 2018 | updated - 09 Jul 2018 | Public
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1. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Carole King: Natural Woman (2016)

TV-14 | 55 min | Documentary, Biography

Rare home movies, performances and photos help illustrate the life and career of songwriter-singer Carole King, from 1960s New York to Los Angeles in the 1970s to extensive present-day interviews with King and and those who know her best.

Director: George Scott | Stars: Carole King, Eugenia Klein, Sidney N. Klein, Joel Zwick

Votes: 53

3. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise (2017)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

Singer, dancer, activist and writer Maya Angelou inspired generations with boundary-pushing African-American writings. Trace her incredible journey as she unwraps untold aspects of her life with rare footage, photographs and her own words.

Directors: Bob Hercules, Rita Coburn Whack | Stars: Maya Angelou, James Baldwin, Diahann Carroll, Bill Clinton

Votes: 17

4. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Fats Domino and the Birth of Rock 'n' Roll (2016)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

The New Orleans rhythm and blues of Fats Domino helped aid integration in the South.

Director: Joe Lauro | Stars: David Bartholomew, Fats Domino, Cosimo Matassa, Clarke Peters

Votes: 41

5. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Janis: Little Girl Blue (2016)

TV-14 | 105 min | Documentary, Biography

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Director: Amy Berg | Stars: Peter Albin, Sam Andrew, Karleen Bennett, Brad Campbell

Votes: 39

6. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You (2016)

TV-PG | 84 min | Documentary, Biography

With unprecedented access to Norman Lear, his work and his massive personal archives, this documentary combines stories from his turbulent childhood and early career with his groundbreaking TV success and social activism.

Directors: Heidi Ewing, Rachel Grady, Annette Jolles | Stars: John Amos, Bea Arthur, Adrienne Barbeau, Valerie Bertinelli

Votes: 54

7. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Harper Lee: Hey, Boo (2015)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

One of the biggest American bestsellers of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird (1960), was thought to be the only novel by Harper Lee. However, on July 14, 2015, Go Set a Watchman was released,... See full summary »

Votes: 7

8. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Harper Lee: Hey, Boo (2015)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

One of the biggest American bestsellers of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird (1960), was thought to be the only novel by Harper Lee. However, on July 14, 2015, Go Set a Watchman was released,... See full summary »

Votes: 7

9. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Harper Lee: Hey, Boo (2015)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

One of the biggest American bestsellers of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird (1960), was thought to be the only novel by Harper Lee. However, on July 14, 2015, Go Set a Watchman was released,... See full summary »

Votes: 7

10. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Althea (2015)

TV-14 | 90 min | Documentary, Biography

Althea Gibson, a truant from the rough streets of Harlem, emerged as a most unlikely queen of the highly segregated tennis world of the 1950's. Say the name Althea Gibson to most people and... See full summary »

Director: Rex Miller | Star: Althea Gibson

Votes: 24

11. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: The Women's List (2015)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

Director Timothy Greenfield-Sanders spotlights 15 women who define contemporary American culture; included are Madeleine Albright, Margaret Cho, Edie Falco, Betsey Johnson, Alicia Keys, Nancy Pelosi, Rosie Perez and Wendy Williams.

Director: Timothy Greenfield-Sanders | Stars: Madeleine Albright, Gloria Allred, Laurie Anderson, Sara Blakely

Votes: 59

12. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Salinger (2014)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

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Director: Shane Salerno

Votes: 44

13. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Bing Crosby Rediscovered (2014)

TV-14 | 85 min | Documentary, Biography

American Masters looks at one of the most prolific entertainers in history; Bing Crosby. The special looks into his family life and into a career that spanned decades over film, music, and live entertainment.

Director: Robert Trachtenberg | Stars: Louis Armstrong, Fred Astaire, Pearl Bailey, Tony Bennett

Votes: 80

14. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Billie Jean King (2013)

TV-PG | 84 min | Documentary, Biography

For the first time, American Masters profiles a sports figure: Billie Jean King, a determined woman who has been a major force in changing and democratizing the cultural landscape. American... See full summary »

Director: James Erskine | Stars: Peaches Bartkowicz, Rosie Casals, Hillary Clinton, Margaret Court

Votes: 66

15. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Jeff Bridges: The Dude Abides (2011)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

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Director: Gail Levin | Star: Jeff Bridges

Votes: 80

16. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Troubadours: Carole King/James Taylor & the Rise of the Singer-Songwriter (2011)

Unrated | 101 min | Documentary, Biography

58 Metascore

A musical journey tracing the lives and careers of James Taylor and Carole King, pillars of the California singer/songwriter scene, which converged in and around LA's Troubadour Club in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Director: Morgan Neville | Stars: Lou Adler, Peter Asher, Paul Body, Ursula Britton

Votes: 96

17. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Sam Cooke: Crossing Over (2010)

TV-14 | 54 min | Documentary, Biography

A documentary capturing the life of Sam Cooke.

Director: John Antonelli | Star: Danny Glover

Votes: 68

18. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Trumbo (2009)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

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Votes: 45

19. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Garrison Keillor: The Man on the Radio in the Red Shoes (2008)

Not Rated | 86 min | Documentary, Biography

America's foremost humorist and commentator, Garrison Keillor takes his skits and jokes, music and monologues across the country in his traveling radio show, spinning his stories into ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Rosen | Stars: Pat Donahue, Richard A. Dworsky, Garrison Keillor, Tom Keith

Votes: 104

21. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Pete Seeger: The Power of Song (2008)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

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Votes: 54

22. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Zora Neale Hurston: Jump at the Sun (2008)

TV-14 | 83 min | Documentary, Biography

Author Zora Neale Hurston died in poverty in 1960 but today her novels are read throughout the world. Her controversial life story is explored in this biopic.

Director: Samuel D. Pollard | Stars: Kim Brockington, Cab Calloway, Frank Robertson Jr., Marceline Hugot

Votes: 57

23. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Marvin Gaye: What's Going On (2008)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

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Director: Samuel D. Pollard | Star: Jesse L. Martin

Votes: 70

25. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Carol Burnett: A Woman of Character (2007)

TV-PG | Documentary, Biography

Comedienne Carol Burnett's early show business aspirations were to perform in live theater on Broadway, craving the instant gratification from a live audience. Her sensibilities were shaped... See full summary »

Director: Kyra Thompson | Stars: Carol Burnett, Betty White, Kenny Solms, Tim Conway

Votes: 87

26. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: The World of Nat King Cole (2006)

TV-14 | 55 min | Documentary, Biography

Edited version of an 89 minute UK documentary on the life of the singer with recollections from family, friends, and famous fans.

Director: Ian A. Hunt | Stars: Eden Ahbez, Pearl Bailey, Harry Belafonte, André Benjamin

Votes: 49

29. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Marilyn Monroe: Still Life (2006)

TV-14 | 55 min | Documentary, Biography

Explores Monroe as the icon of the 20th century via photography, perhaps, her greatest "love affair".

Director: Gail Levin | Stars: Eve Arnold, Cecil Beaton, Patricia Bosworth, Louis Calhern

Votes: 85

30. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Walter Cronkite: Witness to History (2006)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

Walter Cronkite was the man who gave us the news for two tumultuous decades in the late 20th century. As historian, journalist and author David Halberstam says in praise of the great CBS ... See full summary »

Director: Catherine Tatge | Stars: Katie Couric, Chip Cronkite, Kathy Cronkite, Walter Cronkite

Votes: 52

31. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Bob Newhart: Unbuttoned (2005)

TV-14 | 84 min | Documentary, Biography

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Director: Kyra Thompson

Votes: 65

32. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Sweet Honey in the Rock: Raise Your Voice (2005)

TV-14 | 84 min | Documentary, Biography

Filmmaker Stanley Nelson captures the history of African-American a cappella group Sweet Honey In The Rock and follows their 30th anniversary concert tour. The film includes footage from ... See full summary »

Director: Stanley Nelson | Stars: Arnaé, Ysaye M. Barnwell, Nitanju Bolade Casel, Aisha Kahlil

Votes: 52

33. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: James Dean: Sense Memories (2005)

TV-14 | 54 min | Documentary, Biography

Documentary exploring the life and career of James Dean.

Director: Gail Levin | Stars: Mark Rydell, Martin Landau, Eli Wallach, William Bast

Votes: 85

34. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Annie Leibovitz: Life Through a Lens (2006)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

This film traces the artistic self-realization of Annie Leibovitz, from childhood through the death of her beloved friend, Susan Sontag, and includes snippets of Leibovitz's last visual ... See full synopsis »

Director: Barbara Leibovitz | Stars: Mikhail Baryshnikov, Graydon Carter, Hillary Clinton, George Clooney

Votes: 455

35. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Sketches of Frank Gehry (2005)

PG-13 | 83 min | Documentary, Biography

71 Metascore

A look at the life and work of the renown architect.

Director: Sydney Pollack | Stars: Frank Gehry, Sydney Pollack, Julian Schnabel, Charles Arnoldi

Votes: 1,479 | Gross: $0.44M

36. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Andy Warhol: A Documentary (2006)

TV-14 | 240 min | Documentary, Biography

86 Metascore

Ric Burns unearths rarely seen footage and offers keen observations on the life and artistic influence of Andy Warhol.

Director: Ric Burns | Stars: Laurie Anderson, Irving Blum, Salvador Dalí, Candy Darling

Votes: 333

37. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Willa Cather: The Road Is All (2005)

TV-14 | 90 min | Documentary, Biography

This documentary tells the story of a woman who invented herself from scratch. As a child, Willa Cather was taken from her comfortable home in Virginia into the wild Nebraska frontier--a ... See full summary »

Director: Joel Geyer | Stars: Joan Acocella, Willa Cather, Richard Giannone, Vivian Gornick

Votes: 58

38. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Ernest Hemingway: Rivers to the Sea (2005)

TV-14 | 90 min | Documentary, Biography

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Director: DeWitt Sage | Stars: Kate Burton, James Naughton

Votes: 75

39. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: No Direction Home: Bob Dylan (2005)

Not Rated | 359 min | Documentary, Biography

A chronicle of Bob Dylan's strange evolution between 1961 and 1966 from folk singer to protest singer to "voice of a generation" to rock star.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Bob Dylan, B.J. Rolfzen, Dick Kangas, Liam Clancy

Votes: 10,714

41. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Cary Grant: A Class Apart (2004)

TV-MA | 87 min | Documentary, Biography

American Masters explores the life and career of Cary Grant (born Archie Leach) with celebrity interviews.

Director: Robert Trachtenberg | Stars: Helen Mirren, Cary Grant, Jeanine Basinger, Ralph Bellamy

Votes: 475

42. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Judy Garland: By Myself (2004)

TV-14 | 116 min | Documentary, Biography

Actress Judy Garland tells her own story through recordings she made while preparing to write her autobiography.

Director: Susan Lacy | Stars: Harris Yulin, June Allyson, Del Armstrong, Desi Arnaz

Votes: 196

43. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Willie Nelson: Still Is Still Moving (2002)

TV-14 | 84 min | Documentary, Biography

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Director: Steven Cantor | Star: Willie Nelson

Votes: 45

45. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Finding Lucy (2000)

TV-14 | Documentary, Biography

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Director: Pamela Mason Wagner | Stars: Edie Adams, Desi Arnaz Jr., Desi Arnaz, Lucie Arnaz

Votes: 93

46. American Masters (1985– )
Episode: Bob Marley: Rebel Music (2000)

TV-14 | 90 min | Documentary, Biography