Get your pick from popular and award winning features available as Foxtel Play documentaries.
Informative, educational, and inspiring: a good documentary allows us to look behind the curtain and into the real lives, struggles, and stories that are too good to be fiction. Lovers of documentaries won’t be disappointed with a Foxtel subscription. Here is our pick of the best.
- March of the Penguins
- The Crash Reel
- Bill Cunningham New York
- The September Issue
- Stories We Tell
- The Armstrong Lie
- All This Mayhem
- Twenty Feet from Stardom
- Lagerfeld Confidential
Foxtel Now two weeks free trial
Get free trial for two weeks now at Foxtel Now
March of the Penguins
March of the Penguins follows the fascinating survival instinct of emperor penguins as they embark on an annual mating ritual in the most uninhabitable place on Earth - Antarctica. It’s narrated by Morgan Freeman, who brings more than touch of wonder to this incredible journey.
Runtime: 80 minutes
IMDB rating: 7.0
Awards: Academy Award for Best Documentary (2006), plus 23 more awards.
The Crash Reel
An exhilarating, moving, and finally inspiring story about a professional snowboarder, who suffers a nearly fatal accident and a traumatic brain injury weeks before the Olympics. His tale of achievement and recovery addresses issues of love, family, and passion, and the strength of the human spirit .
Runtime: 108 minutes
IMDB rating: 8.2
Awards: Melbourne International Film Festival Award for Most Popular Documentary (2013), Documentary Special Jury at Seattle International Film Festival (2013), Cinema Eye Honors Award for Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction Filmmaking for Television (2014) plus 9 more awards.
Bill Cunningham New York
The elusive Bill Cunningham is perhaps one of the most influential street fashion photographers, living an almost ascetic existence in his lifelong quest to capture ensembles from the streets of New York. The documentary follows his life, his motivation, and his 35 year career.
Runtime: 84 minutes
IMDB rating: 7.9
Awards: Chlotrudis Award for Best Documentary, plus 9 nominations.
This documentary follows the U.S. quad rugby team as they fight their way to the 2004 Paralympic Games in Athens. Challenging assumptions about ability and disability, the film is an in-depth look at their lives, the circumstances that lead to their disabilities, and details the extreme push for glory playing full-contact rugby from a wheelchair.
Runtime: 88 minutes
IMDB rating: 7.8
Awards: Austin Film Critics Award for Best documentary (2005), British Film Institute Award Special Mention (2005), Gotham Award for Best Documentary (2005), plus 15 other awards.
The September Issue
Following revered editor Anna Wintour and her team, The September Issue documents the fashion-forward team as they prepare for the Vogue September Issue in 2007. An insider look at what it takes to design trends, dictate fashion, and exude style as the best in the business.
Runtime: 90 minutes
IMDB rating: 7.0
Awards: Cinema Eye Honors Award for Audience Choice (2010), Sundance Film Festival Award for Cinematography (2010).
Stories We Tell
Telling the intimate and intertwines tales of the family of Sarah Polley, Stories We Tell follows the film maker and actress as she unravels a secret kept for years about her own identity.
Runtime: 108 minutes
IMDB rating: 7.6
Awards: Alliance of Women Film Journalists award for Best Documentary Feature Film (2012), Australian Film critics association Award for Best Documentary (2014), CinEuphoria award for Best Documentary (2014), plus 23 other awards.
The Armstrong Lie
The definitive documentary chronicling the sports legend Lance Armstrong: cancer survivor and seven-time winner of the Tour de France, as well as his fall from grace in the wake of revelations about his doping.
Runtime: 124 minutes
IMDB rating: 7.2
Awards: Golden Trailer Award for Best Documentary TV Spot (2014).
All This Mayhem
In the early nineties Melbourne brothers Ben and Tas Pappas were riding high – ranked as number one and two in the world as vert skateboarders. But the effects of a wild skateboarding subculture, drug use, and a chaotic life took their toll and ended in tragedy.
Runtime: 104 minutes
IMDB rating: 8
Awards: Australian Film Institute AACTA Awards for Best Direction in a Documentary, Best Editing in a Documentary, Best Original Music Score in a Documentary 2015.
Twenty Feet from Stardom
Giving long-overdue applause to the backup singers that made some of the most lasting pop hits what they are, Twenty Feet from Stardom explores the lives of singers who spent their careers just out of the spotlight.
Runtime: 91 minutes
IMDB rating: 7.4
Awards: Academy Award for Best Documentary in 2014, plus 20 other awards.
After three years of filming, Lagerfeld Confidential offers a window into the life of the elusive and controversial designer: Karl Lagerfeld. The audience is allowed into his daily work, his life, and his past.
Runtime: 89 minutes
IMDB rating: 6.7
Awards: Nominated for a Zurich Film Festival Award.
- Also read: Foxtel Play review
- Also read: What you need to know about Foxtel
- Also read: Netflix v Foxtel
- Also read: Quickflix v Netflix v Stan v Foxtel v Everyone else