7 Documentaries to Stream (2023)

While the weather outside remains more conducive to staying inside with a coffee, a blanket, and a good book it’s also a perfect time to catch up on the latest documentaries available to stream. I’ve blogged about documentary recommendations before, but here’s the latest titles that are queued up, and ready for me to watch over the coming weeks. I’m not suggesting that you show these in your classroom, although some have content that you might want to view and discuss with your students, depending on their age. I’ve included links to the documentary website (many include great associated resources) if one exists, plus the most pertinent Twitter link related to the title.

The 1619 Project (Hulu)

I listened to the podcast, and I’m slowly reading the book. Now comes the Hulu six-part 1619 Docuseries, which is an expansion of “The 1619 Project” created by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones and the New York Times Magazine. The series seeks to reframe the country’s history by placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of Black Americans at the very center of our national narrative.

@nhannahjones

1619books.com

Fight the Power: How Hip Hop Changed the World (PBS)

Hip Hop has provided a constant soundtrack to my life, and as a fan of the Golden Age of Hip Hop, I’m very excited to dive into this documentary. Chuck D of Public Enemy explores Hip Hop’s political awakening over the last 50 years. With a host of rap stars and cultural commentators he tracks Hip Hop’s socially conscious roots. From The Message to Fight The Power 2020, he examines how Hip Hop has become “the Black CNN.”

PBS documentary page

Athlete A (Netflix)

Athlete A spotlights the horrific sexual abuse of hundreds of young athletes by USAG team doctor Larry Nassar, and shines an even brighter light on the team of individuals working to hold USA Gymnastics and Lassar Nassar accountable. In training its lens on athletes vying for a coveted spot on the American Olympic team, as well as junior gymnasts coming up the ranks, Athlete A investigates systemic abuse and institutionalized corruption within the world of gymnastics.

@AthleteAFilm

Athlete A official page

Changing the Game (Hulu)

A documentary on a hot topic right now. With decisions regarding transgender individuals and athletes being made across the country, CHANGING THE GAME seems like a must-watch. It takes us into the lives of three high school athletes—all at different stages of their athletic seasons, personal lives, and unique paths as transgender teens.

@ChangingGameDoc

ChangingGameDoc.com

The Janes (HBO Max)

In the spring of 1972, police raided an apartment on the South Side of Chicago where seven women who were part of a clandestine network were arrested and charged. Using code names, fronts, and safe houses to protect themselves and their work, the accused had built an underground service for women seeking safe, affordable, illegal abortions. They called themselves “Jane.”

HBO documentary page

15 Minutes of Shame (HBO Max)

This one might be of use when considering conversations about navigating online behaviors. 15 MINUTES OF SHAME is a timely, eye-opening roller-coaster ride through the world of public shaming. This documentary film examines social behavior by embedding with individuals from across the U.S. who have been publicly shamed or cyber-harassed – while exploring the bullies, the bystanders, the media, psychologists, politicians and experts in between. 15 MINUTES OF SHAME is about one of the most pressing and unaddressed issues of modern life, brought to you by the people who know it best.

HBO documentary page

Bill Russell: Legend (Netflix)

Highlighting a player who was the GOAT before the GOAT was even a term. The official synopsis explains that the documentary serves as the “definitive bio-doc” on “the greatest champion in the history of American sports,” tracing Russell’s history on the court and off, paying special reverence to his work as a Civil Rights pioneer. “From the humblest of beginnings, Russell went on to lead each and every one of his basketball teams to championships — two California State High School Championships, two back-to-back NCAA titles, a gold medal at the 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games and 11 championship titles in his 13-year career as a Boston Celtic (his last two as the first Black head coach in NBA history, while still playing for the Celtics),” the description reads. “Bill’s story is innately and uniquely intertwined with the 75-year history of the NBA, and the story of America’s last eight decades.”

**BONUS 8th DOCUMENTARY**

Stand (Showtime)

Raw and unflinching examination of the courageous and remarkable life of basketball star and social justice activist Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf. Born Chris Jackson, he overcame tremendous adversity to reach the NBA and found his true calling when he converted to Islam. His decision not to stand for the national anthem, however, turned him from prodigy to pariah. Told candidly by Abdul-Rauf himself more than 20 years later it’s the remarkable story of one man who kept the faith and paved the way for a social justice movement.

Other popular #slowchathealth blog posts that you might like are:

9 Netflix Documentaries to Watch this Spring (2019)

9 Netflix Documentaries to Watch This Summer (2018)

9 Netflix Documentaries to Watch This Summer (2017)

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