Feed Your Mind With These Documentaries from Netflix and Apple TV+

We say intelligence is sexy, so get fit with these thought-provoking releases!
Wednesday 7 April 2021
Photo: Netflix

Are you over the mind-numbing rotation of drama series and action films? Looking to nourish the mind with some real-world information? Your favourite content streaming platforms might just have the fix for your quest for self-enrichment. From the ocean and the desert to the tracks and the stage, these documentaries pull back the curtains from these mostly hidden experiences and lets you walk a mile in their shoes. 


My Octopus Teacher

Burnt out from constantly overworking himself, filmmaker Craig Foster made the call to go back to what felt good: the ocean. In his free-diving adventures, he stumbled upon a curious octopus. Over a year, he had gained her trust and grew fond of her. 

Foster experienced immense self-discovery and reflection, learning much from his new eight-limbed mollusc friend. Follow his award-winning journey (and the octopus’s) in My Octopus Teacher



Seaspiracy is one of the latest documentary films to shake the world of fishing. In this exposé, British filmmaker Ali Tabrizi travelled the world to uncover the conspiracy behind the world’s commercial fishing industry. 

Although developed with a story-telling technique, Tabrizi has put some real elbow grease into the makings of this documentary. He and his partner collected footages with hidden cameras from ports and markets to document the atrocities and just how large a scale it’s operating at. Multiple interviews, particularly with key individuals in the marine conservation organisations, proved that some of these operations lack the comprehension necessary to address the matter for which they are fighting. 

Seaspiracy is a hard yet necessary viewing. There will be upsetting clips, so steel yourselves for that.


Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry 

The chance to follow the meteoric ascension of a star is one in a million. In Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry, viewers are taken on a journey into Eilish’s creative process, particularly the creation of the singer-songwriter’s debut studio album When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?.

The documentary features both soul-stirring and heart-wrenching moments in her life. A riveting watch, you will get to know the star beyond her on-stage persona. In this exclusive film, Eilish shows her human (and assertive, young adult) side, and how she is more than her ethereal voice. 


Secrets of the Saqqara Tomb

Take a trip to the desert from the comforts of your couch. 

The film documented the discovery of a tomb dating back to the 25th century BC. A team of local archaeologists explored new passageways, shafts and tombs at the Saqqara necropolis, leading to one of the most significant finds in nearly 50 years—a perfectly preserved tomb. 

The tomb belongs to Wahtye, a high-ranking priest who walked the Earth during Egypt’s Fifth Dynasty. The two-hour docu feature provides a unique and unprecedented window into the lives and deaths of one man and his family. 


Formula 1: Drive to Survive

This 10-episode long docu-series is the third instalment of the collaboration between Netflix and Formula 1. Witness first-hand how the drivers and teams battle it out for victory in the 2020 World Championship.

The year was unlike any other. Fans were given unprecedented behind the scenes access to the season which saw the sport dramatically halted in Australia due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Later that year, it made a thrilling restart in Austria. Intense battles, fierce rivalries, unexpected podiums and Lewis Hamilton’s incredible seventh world title will ensure the series is one of the most action-packed yet. 


The Last Dance

Co-produced by ESPN Films and Netflix, The Last Dance is a series that revolves around Michael Jordan’s career, particularly his final season with the Chicago Bulls. 

The award-winning documentary used never-before aired footage from the 1997-98 Bulls season, which was Jordan’s final season with the team. Coach Phil Jackson noted that this was the last time the world would ever see the greatest player of all time and his extraordinary teammates in full flight. 

The series features exclusive footage from a film crew that had an all-access pass to the Bulls, as well as interviews with many NBA personalities including Jordan, Dennis Rodman, Steve Kerr, Scottie Pippen and Phil Jackson.