There are many types of geeks — photography geeks, math geeks, gaming geeks, history geeks, movie geeks, health geeks — the list goes on! Although some of these areas are very different, I believe that geeks all hold some common attributes. Geeks are obsessive, once we find an interest, we will normally spend a lot of time doing it. This obsession normally turns in to a desire to understand the ‘behind the scenes’ of their interest, going from a consumer, to a creator.
Documentary is a genre that I love for this very reason. It takes a subject and explores it in new and exciting ways that I have never seen it before.
This list of documentaries for geeks all have this in common. They give you a behind the scenes look at a person, a place, an industry and in some cases, a complete movement. These are all films that I have seen, so be sure to leave your comments with all the ones I missed!
The King of Kong: Fistful of Quarters
Diehard video game fans compete to break World Records on classic arcade games.
The September Issue
A documentary chronicling Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour’s preparations for the 2007 fall-fashion issue.
Documentary about an aspiring filmmaker’s attempts to finance his dream project by finally completing the low-budget horror film he abandoned years before.
Page One: Inside the New York Times
Unprecedented access to the New York Times newsroom yields a complex view of the transformation of a media landscape fraught with both peril and opportunity.
Being Elmo: A Puppeteer’s Journey
The Muppet Elmo is one of the most beloved characters among children across the globe. Meet the unlikely man behind the puppet – the heart and soul of Elmo – Kevin Clash.
A documentary about typography, graphic design, and global visual culture.
How Much Does Your Building Weigh, Mr. Foster?
The film traces the rise of one of the world’s premier architects, Norman Foster, and his unending quest to improve the quality of life through design.
A documentary that examines the relationship between celebrity and society.
Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead
An unconventional and uplifting story of two men from different worlds who each realize that the only person who can save them is themselves.
Disclaimer: I worked as the Australian Community Manager for Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead.
A feature-length documentary about our complex relationship with manufactured objects and, by extension, the people who design them.
The Greatest Movie Ever Sold
A documentary about branding, advertising and product placement that is financed and made possible by brands, advertising and product placement.
Spellbound follows eight teenagers on their quest to win the 1999 National Spelling Bee.
Exit Through the Gift Shop
The story of how an eccentric French shop keeper and amateur film maker attempted to locate and befriend Banksy
Catfish is a riveting story of love, deception and grace within a labyrinth of online intrigue.
Bill Cunningham New York
A cinematic profile of the noted veteran New York City fashion photographer.
What are your favourite documentaries? Let us know in the comments!
Josh is a Melbourne Blogger, Filmmaker/Video Editor and online consultant who enjoys the web, photography, graphic design, writing and travel. Josh is the founder of Melbourne Geek. Josh has a travel website, Now Explored.