Underground Film Journal

Streaming: Documentary

To find the most wonderfully challenging, thought-provoking and enduring documentaries ever made to watch online, just look below.

In The Mirror Of Maya Deren

This documentary examines how Maya Deren shaped the course of avant-garde filmmaking in the United States through works such as the iconic Meshes of the Afternoon (1943) and other films. Filmmaker Martina Kudlácek interviews those who knew Deren personally and features excerpts from her films as well as examining her unfinished work documenting Haitian voodoo rituals.

Director: Martina Kudlácek

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B.I.K.E.

A well-to-do young man attempts to become a member of the Brooklyn chapter of the infamous Black Label Bicycle Club, an anti-corporate organization that promotes living outside of society’s social norm. Starring: Anthony Howard, Waugh Amanda, Jennifer Bezak, Conrad Carlson

Director: Anthony Howard and Jacob Septimus

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Buzz One Four

Filmmaker Matt McCormick recounts the story of how his grandfather — a B-52 bomber pilot — almost accidentally blew up the entire U.S. Eastern seaboard in a nuclear holocaust. Features an amazing amount of military archival footage and personal home movies of the McCormick family.

Director: Matt McCormick

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All The Rage (Saved By Sarno)

This documentary profiles Dr. John E. Sarno, whose controversial approach to solving back pain has helped countless people, including comedian Larry David, radio personality Howard Stern and filmmaker Michael Galinksy.

Director: Michael Galinsky, Suki Hawley, David Bellinson

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American Arab

Iraqi-American filmmaker Usama Alshaibi explores the nature of his own family’s dual sense of identity, the experiences of other Arab Americans and the depictions of Arabs in mainstream media.

Director: Usama Alshaibi

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Plagues & Pleasures On The Salton Sea

This documentary reveals the troubled history of Salton Sea, which was once the site of a wonderful resort in the California desert, but soon turned into a fetid, largely abandoned area. Narrated by John Waters.

Director: Chris Metzler, Jeff Springer

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Cul De Sac: A Suburban War Story

This documentary examines the causes and ramifications of when Shawn Nelson, a plumber, stole a National Guard tank and drove it around the suburban streets of San Diego, California.

Director: Garrett Scott

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Spine Tingler! The William Castle Story

This documentary profiles William Castle — the horror movie producer and director of such as The Tingler, 13 Ghosts and House on Haunted Hill — and invented numerous theater experiences, like putting joy buzzers under audience seats and making ghosts fly overhead.

Director: Jeffrey Schwarz

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I Am Divine

This documentary chronicles the rise to fame of the iconic drag queen, Divine, who starred in John Waters’s films like Pink Flamingos, Female Trouble and Hairspray and shone as a disco diva, inspiring outsider performers for generations.

Director: Jeffrey Schwarz

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The Man Who Would Be Polka King

Documenting the true life story of Jan Lewan, a polka singing star who milked his fans for millions of dollars by involving them in a complicated Ponzi Scheme.

Director: Joshua Brown, John Mikulak

Streaming On:

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