TV

5 Netflix documentaries you should watch right now

Who's ready to learn some stuff?

By Georgia Lake

Step away from that show you've been obsessively watching for the past two weeks! If you're in need of a binge-break, why not try something a little more informative?

These five captivating documentaries on Netflix are sure to give your curious brain something to think about. Less complicated drama plots that are tough to follow, and more "yes it would do me some good to learn about real-world issues right now".

BEFORE THE FLOOD (2016)

Oscar-winner and UN Messenger of Peace, Leonardo DiCaprio, created Before the Flood alongside Academy Award-winning filmmaker Fisher Stevens. Presented by National Geographic, the team travels the globe to investigate the consequences of man-made global warming and the lengths we are taking to reduce it.

Leo crosses five continents, exploring the sunny-day flooding in Florida, melting glaciers in the Arctic Circle, rampant deforestation in Indonesia, and much more. He meets with leading scientists and political names, from Elon Musk and Piers Sellars, to the Pope and Barack Obama, and queries them on how they're fighting the threat of climate change.

Not only does this film outline how these problems have progressed, but also suggests ways we can minimise our global footprint. We can guarantee you'll learn something new from this doco.

SAVING CAPITALISM (2017)

Immediately you might think "now why would we want to save capitalism?" – And that's the exact response Robert Reich wants.

Robert, former Secretary of Labor under Bill Clinton, presents a documentary based on his book Saving Capitalism, where he discusses the increasing divide between the rich and not-so-rich.

It showcases the widening gap between American people, with interviews with everyone from farmers, to fast-food workers, to successful business people and lobbyists.

Through this he unpacks how the American system is skewed to favour the rich. Roberts explains that when it comes to politics, everyone wants to be heard. Many of us know this is not the case, and this film provides some ideas for how we can change this.

WHAT THE HEALTH (2017)

Want to learn about what the health organisations don't want you to know? From the creators of award-winning film Cowspiracy, filmmaker Kip Anderson uncovers the secret to preventing chronic diseases, and why the big companies aren't talking about it.

This one's super interesting as it essentially exposes the roots of America's biggest killers - such as diabetes, obesity, cancer and heart disease - and discusses the real reason why they're so common.

With insights from the most-trusted American health non-profit organisations, Kip presents a juicy doco that leaves you wanting more.

An eye-opener for everyone curious about how our health is influenced by large corporations.

NOBODY SPEAK: TRIALS OF THE FREE PRESS (2017)

Nobody Speak assesses the current state of journalism, shedding light on wealthy figures in powerful positions who challenge publications' right to free press.

The film looks at the Hulk Hogan sex tape scandal, and how Hodan sued Gawker Media for breaching his privacy and damaging his reputation.

The case was backed by Peter Thiel, a wealthy entrepreneur who had a vengeance against the unlucky publication, which in turn declared bankruptcy after being charged with $140 million in damages.

FITTEST ON EARTH: A DECADE OF FITNESS (2017)

To finish on a lighter note, we've chosen a more inspiring documentary to end with, rather than carrying on the doom and gloom vibe.

2016 was the 10th anniversary of the Reebok CrossFit Games. In celebration, the brand created a behind-the-scenes documentary that follows a group of athletes through a gruelling 15-day competition to decide who the fittest men and women are.

Delving into athletes' training programs and obsessive minds, the film looks at what sets a CrossFit competitor apart from any other sportsperson.

You've got the strongest, fittest, most undeniably incredible people in the world competing against each other in excruciatingly strenuous and testing exercises… while you're probably watching with a glass of wine and thinking "I'll start tomorrow".

If you want motivation, this one's for you!

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