Classic DOCS

Classic DOCS

A rotating selection of twenty-five of the most heavy-hitting, and/or iconic docs in OVID's collection, almost all of which are only streaming here on OVID.

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Classic DOCS
  • Sherman's March

    Directed by Ross McElwee • Documentary • 1986 • 155 minutes

    When First Run released Ross McElwee's Sundance Award winning Sherman's March in 1986, it went on to become one of the largest grossing documentaries ever. Audiences and critics alike fell in love with McElwee's "quirky, funny and fasci...

  • Forever

    Directed by Heddy Honigmann • Documentary • 2006 • 95 minutes

    Through a leisurely tour of the world-famous Père-Lachaise cemetery in Paris, the final resting place for legendary writers, composers, painters and other artists from around the world, FOREVER provides an unusually poignant, emotiona...

  • The Sorrow and the Pity

    3 items

    Newly Restored in HD!

    From its first release at an underground theater in Paris, this account of France's occupation under Nazi regime has been acclaimed as one of the most moving and influential films ever made. Director Marcel Ophüls interviewed the residents of Clermont-Ferrand who remembered...

  • 56 UP

    Directed by Michael Apted • Documentary • With Bruce Balden, Jacqueline Basset, Symon Basterfield, Andrew Brackfield, John Brisby, Suzanne Dewey, Nicholas Hitchon, Neil Hughes, Lynn Johnson, Paul Kligerman, Susan Sullivan, Tony Walker, Charles Furneaux • 2012 • 138 minutes

    ”Give me the child ...

  • Third Avenue: Only the Strong Survive

    Directed by Jon Alpert • Documentary • 1980 • 60 minutes

    This Emmy Award-winning documentary tells the stories of six "ordinary" people who live or work along New York City's Third Avenue, which runs for sixteen miles through Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx, cutting through the complex social...

  • Far from Vietnam

    Directed by Jean-Luc Godard, Joris Ivens, William Klein, Claude Lelouch, Chris Marker, and Alain Resnais • Documentary • 1967 • 115 minutes

    Initiated and edited by Chris Marker, FAR FROM VIETNAM is an epic 1967 collaboration between cinema greats Jean-Luc Godard, Joris Ivens, William Klein, Clau...

  • Night Mail

    Directed by Harry Watt & Basil Charles Wright • Documentary • 1936 • 23 minutes

    A cornerstone of British documentary, Harry Watt and Basil Wright's NIGHT MAIL, with music by Benjamin Britten and verse by W.H. Auden, stands as a beacon for John Grierson's original purpose for documentary - to mak...

  • Brickmakers (Chircales)

    Directed by Marta Rodriguez & Jorge Silva • Documentary • 1972 • 42 minutes

    Remastered! Considered a classic Latin American and Colombian documentary film, Brickmakers chronicles the search for a film production methodology that could be adapted to the sociopolitical conditions of Latin America....

  • On the Bowery

    Directed by Lionel Rogosin • Documentary • With Ray Salyer, Gorman Hendricks, Frank Matthews • 1956 • 65 minutes

    On the Bowery chronicles three days in the drinking life of Ray Salyer, a part-time railroad worker adrift on New York’s skid row. When the film first opened in 1956, it exploded on t...

  • How to Build an Igloo

    Directed by Douglas Wilkinson • Documentary • 1949 • 10 minutes

    A demonstration of igloo-building in Canada's Far North, showing how the site is selected and how blocks of snow are used to make a snug shelter in only an hour and a half. As the camera follows each stage, the commentary explains t...

  • Lonely Boy

    Directed by Wolf Koening, Roman Kroiter • Documentary • 1962 • 26 minutes

    The story of popular singer Paul Anka. He rose from obscurity to become the idol of millions of adolescent fans around the world. This film takes a candid look at both sides of the footlights as well as the promotion indus...

  • Le Joli Mai

    Movie

    Filmed just after the March 1962 ceasefire between France and Algeria, LE JOLI MAI documents Paris during a turning point in French history: the first time since 1939 that France was not involved in any war.

    Part I, "A Prayer from the Eiffel Tower," documents personal attitudes and feelings arou...

  • The Society of the Spectacle

    2 items

    Six years after the publication of his Situationist classic The Society of the Spectacle, Guy Debord released this semi-experimental, essay-film adaptation. Using the classic Situationist technique of “détournement” (think pre-digital remixing), Debord overlays a dizzying array of still and film ...

  • Last Grave at Dimbaza

    Directed by Chris Curling and Pascoe Macfarlane • Documentary • 1974 • 55 minutes

    In 1969, a small group of South African exiles and British film students formed Morena Films in London to produce films about apartheid. By 1974, they produced one of the first, and certainly the most influential, ...

  • The Battle of Chile
    Movie + 2 extras

    The Battle of Chile

    Movie + 2 extras

    On September 11, 1973, President Salvador Allende's democratically-elected Chilean government was overthrown in a bloody coup by General Augusto Pinochet's army.

    Patricio Guzman and five colleagues had been filming the political developments in Chile throughout the nine months leading up to that...

  • Milestones

    Directed by Robert Kramer and John Douglas • Documentary • 1975 • 195 minutes

    MILESTONES is a lilting, free-associative masterpiece that follows dozens of characters — including hippies, farmers, immigrants, Native Americans, and political activists — as they try to reconcile their ideals with t...

  • A Grin Without a Cat

    Directed by Chris Marker • Documentary • 1977 • 178 minutes

    Newly restored! A GRIN WITHOUT A CAT is Chris Marker's epic film-essay on the worldwide political wars of the 60's and 70's: Vietnam, Bolivia, May '68, Prague, Chile, and the fate of the New Left.

    Released in France in 1978, restored a...

  • Waiting for Fidel

    Directed by Michael Rubbo • Documentary • 1974 • 57 minutes

    Inside Fidel Castro's Cuba with a movie-making threesome whose hope is that Fidel himself will star in their film. The filmmakers are Joseph Smallwood, former Newfoundland premier, Geoff Stirling, radio and televison owner, and Michael ...

  • Two films by Fronza Woods

    Directed by Fronza Woods • Documentary • 1979 • 24 minutes

    Part of the mediamaking movement that first gave centrality to the voices and experiences of African American women during the late Seventies and early Eighties, these two re-releases are no less groundbreaking today.

    KILLING TIME is an...

  • Tongues Untied

    Directed by Marlon Riggs • Documentary • 1989 • 55 minutes

    The seminal documentary on Black gay life, Emmy Award-winning director Marlon T. Riggs’ 1989 Tongues Untied uses poetry, personal testimony, rap and performance (featuring poet Essex Hemphill and others), to describe the homophobia and r...

  • Decasia

    Directed by Bill Morrison • Documentary • 2002 • 67 minutes

    Often compared to Stan Brakhage, Bill Morrison created DECASIA entirely with decaying, old found footage, melded to the music of Bang on a Can's Michael Gordon, performed by the 55 piece basel sinfonietta. The result is a delirium of de...

  • From The East

    Directed by Chantal Akerman • Documentary • 2003 • 110 minutes

    FROM THE EAST retraces a journey from the end of summer to deepest winter, from East Germany, across Poland and the Baltics, to Moscow. It is a voyage Chantal Akerman wanted to make shortly after the collapse of the Soviet bloc "befo...

  • Nostalgia for the Light

    Directed by Patricio Guzmán • Documentary • 2010 • 90 minutes

    Master director Patricio Guzmán travels 10,000 feet above sea level to the driest place on earth, the Atacama Desert, where atop the mountains astronomers from all over the world gather to observe the stars. The sky is so translucent ...

  • No Home Movie

    Directed by Chantal Akerman • Documentary • 2015 • 115 minutes

     The final film from groundbreaking auteur Chantal Akerman, NO HOME MOVIE is a portrait of her relationship with her mother, Natalia, a Holocaust survivor and familiar presence in many of her daughter's films.

    "At the center of Chan...